A Traveler and his Cat exploring America.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Time Lapse Video

No doubt many of you have seen time lapse videos online by now.  Most all are just fascinating to watch not to mention stunningly beautiful.  Time lapse had always intrigued me and I've wondered if I could ever do one.  Well with a few failed attempts in filming and some stumbling about through all the post production procedures just to get to the final product, I finally pulled it off.

The subject matter and location of this is of little interest.  After a couple goof-ups with the camera, I tried once again just sitting the camera in the window of my study on a rainy day in order to get some footage to work with. This is a little over an hour of time compressed down to 22 seconds.  I could slow it down but didn't want to bore my viewers on something unremarkable.  You can just make out some cloud movement, the tree moving, plus cars and people zipping by.  You don't do clouds on an overcast day but again, this was just an exercise.

I am pretty pleased with myself figuring it all out and being successful.  I made notes all along the way and feel confident that I can do more with less struggle.  The next challenge will be adding some music and putting multiple clips together but for now I'll stick to simple stuff like this.  Hopefully while on the road, particularly in the desert, I can get some more material to work with and post another.

You will recall the little device I made for holding the iPhone on a tripod.  You can see the pictures here.  Later I got to thinking as to just what is out there to be had made specifically to hold a smart phone on a tripod?  I ended up on Ebay and good grief, for $5.45 I could get a proper holder even with a little tripod to go with it!  And so I did.

                 The hook shaped piece is spring loaded.           Even the little legs extend out.

I have the phone in there turned around the wrong way but you get the idea how it works.  
The holder will screw onto a standard tripod also.


  1. well done on your experiment with time-lapse photography John, great too the little tripod; all set up for some more experimenting now

  2. Very good experiment with time lapse. I see that you also get a collection of iphone tripods. Hope to see some more time lapse movies in the future.

  3. You are nice experimenting. I stick to plain photographing so far, but love to watch your results.

  4. neat that you figured out how to do it. and i like the purchased tripod. :)

  5. Cool job on the time lapse. Like you said, the ones I've seen on line have been truly beautiful. I can't wait to see some of your future work, John.

    On the tripod, I also rigged up a way to hold my phone with an L bracket and a rubber band and did a video on youtube about adding a solar panel to my 5th wheel trailer entirely with my cell phone.

  6. Clever to figure out the time-lapse process, John. I bet you will have a lot of fun with this on your trip.



  7. Great successful time-lapse.
    Love seeing what can be done with that camera.

  8. Glad you found something fun to do on a rainy day. :)

  9. My D800E has a "timelapse" setting, so you don't need to do any post-processing. It's kind of annoying, though, to have to listen to the shutter clicking every few seconds. But the whole time lapse gets recorded in a single file, so it's real easy. You can even play it back in your camera right on the spot.


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