The time-lapse is a brilliant way to show off progress in a video form. You can compress hours, days or even months into seconds with a time-lapse, potentially showing off building projects, construction or complex time-consuming processes. Here are some tips and tricks for how to use time-lapse in corporate video.
Time-lapse v Sped-up Video
There are a few different ways to shoot a time-lapse video. One way is to shoot video for the duration of your time-lapse and with a program like Adobe Premiere Pro, speed it up by hundreds or thousands of percent. This method has it’s limitations as you will be limited more by resolution, but can be more convenient to set up if you are already using a video camera.
The more involved but potentially higher quality option is to use a Digital SLR camera. There are three main advantages to shooting with a DSLR:
- Higher resolution
- RAW data
- Motion blur
The higher resolution will come with the fact that most DSLRs these days take stills that are 20+ Megapixels, giving you the resolution to zoom in, slide across and reframe your timelapse, giving it another layer of movement.
As your sequence will be made up of these individual still frames, you can use the RAW capabilities of the SLR to have more room to edit your timelapse and fix any minor issues you might experience with colour or changing light conditions.
With a DSLR you will also have more options with the style of the timelapse. By opening the shutter for a bit longer you can add motion blur to your subjects. This will work especially well with moving human subjects as it will leave a trail behind them, giving a more stylised look.
You’ll need basically three things to create a timelapse:
The first two are pretty self-explanatory, but if you have never used an intervalometer before it can be a new experience. An intervalometer is a relatively inexpensive device that releases the shutter of your camera at regular intervals of your choosing. This saves you the labour intensive process of pressing the shutter button manually hundreds of times in a row, so it is well worth the investment.
Editing your timelapse can be tricky and is a matter of finding what speed you want compress your images into. This can simply be a matter of trial and error to find out what looks the best for your project. You may need to speed up your sequence by 10,000 % depending on the timeframe of your shoot.
Using our Sony A7s, the process was quite simple. You can import all your JPG as a sequence and your timelapse will be recognisable when you play through. You can then alter the speed settings, and make any colour corrections to the whole clip, as opposed to doing it with the individual frames.
If you are looking to capture a time-lapse for your next project, get in touch with Dream Engine today.
Ryan Spanger is one of Melbourne’s most respected and sought-after video production professionals. Ryan founded Dream Engine in 2002, and specialises in helping medium to large corporates, government departments, and the non-proﬁt sector to connect with their audience more effectively by using video.