Archive for the ‘Timelapse’ Category

Flower blooming

Epiphyllum oxypetalum is a species of cactus. Flower blooms once a year, at night for a few hours, and is pollinated by bats or moths. The flower is in full bloom only for a short time. Soon it starts to wilt.

I captured a timelapse sequence of a flower blooming and beginning to wilt in a span of about 4-5 hours.

Street traffic

I hate traffic, especially since it has quadrupled in last few years on the street i live on. But I enjoyed making a short timelapse of this. The uncompressed format is better. The compression on vimeo upload has spoiled it to certain extent.

How do you like it? Hope to make longer and better timelapses soon.


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Timelapse is the technique where each captured frame in a sequence is played back at a rate much faster than it was captured at. A flower blooming, captured over a day or two, seen in matter of few seconds is an excellent example of time lapse.

There are many good articles that tell you how to do a timelapse. Couple of good articles/FAQs on timelapse:


Timothy Allen‘s

But, the objective of this article is to show what happens if you don’t follow some of the guidelines those articles profess, or How not to shoot timelapse.

I was bored on yesterday afternoon and thought of shooting a small timelapse. Here’s the result:

This timelapse sequence was made for about 15minutes, as a compilation of about 300 images. That roughly translates to 1 image per 3 seconds.

The funny part is, I didn’t use a tripod or an intervalometer. I shot it with support of my footware, manually clicking 300+ images. Stupidity some would say. I say, good learning on first attempt of timelapse.

Why do you need tripod? Mainly for stability. If the images are not captured from a fixed point, there will be flickrs or jitters in the timelapsed video. More so if the time line compressed more. This is evident in the above video at various instances.

I tried to give the dolly tripod effect by moving the camera bit by bit, but it didn’t turn out as expected :))

You can get away shooting without tripod for smaller timelapses, but you can’t for longer ones.

Why do you need intervalometer? Intervalometer automatically triggers a shot ever X seconds, for a pre-set exposure interval. If the sequence of images are captured at a fixed interval, the motion in the timelapsed video gives a smoother look wrt frames seen per second.

In the above video, between 2 to 3 seconds, you see that the clouds move slower than in the rest of the video. Also, a bird flies from bottom mid-left to top mid-left. I captured more frames per unit time during that time period than i did for rest of the shoot. Shooting more frames than at the fixed interval time gives somewhat ‘slow motion’ effect in that segment (if done properly that is). This is something that cannot be achieved with a intervalometer (or I am not aware of such a intervalometer).

If you want a timelapse without jitters/flickering and constant motion, use a tripod and intervalometer.

P.S.: If there is any intervalometer with which i can over ride the timer, to capture more frames per second for some time period (dynamically) to create slow motion effect, let me know asap.

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