In this post I was writing a few words about time lapses. At that time I had little knowledge about this interesting and challenging photographic and video-graphic technique as one of my statements was: “Creating time lapses is not difficult.” Now I realize it was my enthusiasm which was “speaking”. In reality as I would find out later creating quality lapse movies proves to be pretty challenging and good preparations, technique and even software are required.
At first glance it looks simple and straight-forward: you put the camera on a tripod, do the framing and composition, start the intervalometer and let the camera shoot for a specific amount of time and with a specific frame rate. Then you either assemble the shots into a movie by using specialised software or the camera does this for you if it has this feature. Is it so simple? Well … urghhh … not quite! There are more things that might need to be taken into consideration. Missing a single detail might ruin the whole movie and cost several hours of wasted time and resources!
I’ll elaborate on this but first let me provide you a free advice: use this technique sparingly. The time lapse is meant to show the viewer a phenomenon that can’t be easily spotted with a naked eye. Good examples might be: a flower that opens within a few days, melting snow or ice, a specific place from sunrise till midnight or a make-up session. Try to be as original and creative as possible, the moving clouds lapse is already too “mainstream” (and often boring!). Not every scene is meant to be converted into a lapse movie.