Time Lapse Techniques

Outdoor Workshop

Wispy clouds gently fly past the viewer, thousands of stars rotate in the night sky overhead, and the sun rapidly falls below the horizon revealing the stars in the dusky sky. Einstein wrote that time is relative and we have come to expect events to occur at specified rates. However, through the magic of timelapse photography, flowers can bloom and die in mere seconds, shadows can race across mountainous landscapes, and city traffic streaks through city highways.

Surely you have seen amazing timelapse sequences in nature films, on YouTube and Vimeo and even in commercial films. Speeding up the rate at which some events occur will often reveal details that would not be obvious when seen at their normal rate. Manipulation of time to see events that are not apparent to the unaided eye include highspeed video to slow down rapidly occurring events and timelapse photography to speed up events which can occur over minutes, hours, or even days and weeks! Highspeed video requires specialized equipment that is rather expensive. Remarkably, timelapse photography doesn’t require a lot of expensive equipment and most digital cameras are capable of creating these images. Since the images are composed of separate still images, video capability isn’t necessary.

Timelapse photography is becoming more and more popular with the advent of digital photography and can make for great imagery either by themselves or as an “add on” to a multimedia show.  We will walk you through the process of making striking timelapse image sequences in the field and give direction on how to turn them into movies to be later inserted into a movie format or multimedia show.  

Activity Level
Low.  Light hiking of up to 1/4 mile could be required for the best angles.

Things to know
This workshop will be held at Mirror Lake / McNenny Fish Hatchery.

What to bring
Lenses from wide angle to telephoto work great and a good tripod is a must.  Bring LOTS of memory cards and batteries as Time Lapse photography eats lots of both.