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Old 03-08-2012, 01:00 PM   #1
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Default Time Lapse photography of my workshop build? How do I do it???

I have a spare Windows XP desktop and a Canon ZR500 digital camcorder. I'd like to use them (or a cheap but higher quality webcam) to make a stop motion movie of the upcoming workshop build beside my house. I've got a great window in the house to film out of and with only a 3 week build time it should be a small manageable project. However, I don't have a clue on how to get started. Anyone ever do something like this? Ideas?

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Old 03-08-2012, 01:10 PM   #2
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I'm sure someone can chime in on this with a camcorder, but I have done all my time lapse videos with stills. You set up the camera to take shots at what ever interval you want. Then compile them in a editing suite (i use premier) and you can increase or decrease to speed to what ever effect you want.
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:15 PM   #3
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get something like this: http://granitebaysoftware.com/Produc...uctGBTEOS.aspx

let XP run the camera, then putting all the stills together is easy.
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:17 PM   #4
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Did you use a regular camera or some sort of USB web cam type device? I would have mentioned my camera as a tool I could have used but I'm sure my wife will be out taking pictures of the work while it is being done. I wanted something I could set up and leave running for 3 weeks.
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:19 PM   #5
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it's all the same once connected through the usb...
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:21 PM   #6
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Maybe I'll dig into Windows Movie Maker and see if it will handle everything for me. Hmmm....
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:25 PM   #7
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doubtful. but im sure you can find a freeware program like i linked that can.

basically once you plug your camera in, it's essentially a webcam that can be controlled directly through software.
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Old 03-08-2012, 02:58 PM   #8
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I have found a freeware program, Monkey Jam, that might fit the bill. I'll experiment with it tonight and see what I can come up with.

http://monkeyjam.org/

AFAIK, there is no way to automate taking the pictures with this program. It works fine if I click the mouse each time I want a pictures but other than that, it does not do what I need it to. Ugh...

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Old 03-08-2012, 03:10 PM   #9
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w00t!
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Old 03-10-2012, 06:35 PM   #10
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OK, my dumb *** was calling it stop motion photography and I was getting no where. It is amazing what you can find if you actually use the correct terminology (time lapse photography). Anyway, here is my first test movie. I filmed 2.5 hours of a shadow on the wall. Sky Studio Pro took 81 pictures (even though I told it to take a pic every 1 minute and I filmed for 147 minutes???). The pics were 640x480 and took 70MB disc space. I used Monkey Jam to create the uncompressed AVI. Monkey Jam crashed several times while creating the 6 second movie. I'll have to play with it some more...

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Old 03-16-2012, 08:56 PM   #11
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OK, test #2 has been completed (understanding the software better and shooting where the workshop will actually be built). Well, this was actually test #3. The real test #2 was made shooting through a window. The afternoon sun was causing a mirror image off the window. I have since built a rig that will let me have the window partially opened but only leave a small hole for the camera to look through. Charleston, SC has a horrible pollen problem at this time of year (everything is completely covered in yellow pollen and it would really ruin the interior of my house) and we are also already using air conditioning so this fix was a nice one.

This is a 10 second film made from 265 pictures over the course of 7 hours:

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Old 03-16-2012, 11:15 PM   #12
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omg white truck!

that's pretty cool.
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Old 03-16-2012, 11:20 PM   #13
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I have no idea why she insists on parking her truck in my picture???
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Old 03-17-2012, 08:17 PM   #14
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Not sure if anyone is interested in this or not but here is test #3. I took pictures at 3x the frequency of the last test and did some action in the middle (starts @ 0:20). FWIW, I was cleaning an old broken compressor a friend gave me. Cleaning it took 1.5 hours and shows up as 7 seconds on the movie.


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Old 03-17-2012, 11:24 PM   #15
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do you plan to edit out "night time" so you can see only the daytime construction stuff?

that last test is pretty good. everything looks very smooth.
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Old 03-18-2012, 12:37 AM   #16
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Yes, I'm sure there will be a ton of editing. Any breaks in the action on construction will have to be cut out and I'm sure that some stuff will just flow better on camera than other things will. I'm going on the assumption that I will only be able to use half the pictures that I take. I'd really like it to be a 3 minute video because anything longer than that will start to get a little boring but I won't know until everything is finished.
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Old 03-18-2012, 01:55 AM   #17
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I'll have to do something like this, I experimented with the time lapse stuff on my gopro, but never figured out how to turn them into a movie.

So you're using Monkey Jam for this?
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Old 03-18-2012, 11:05 AM   #18
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Sky Studio Pro
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Old 03-19-2012, 02:32 PM   #19
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Very cool. Your neighbor's lawnmower looks supa fazt!
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Old 03-27-2012, 07:56 PM   #20
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Well, we are three days into the work (today was really the first full day - the other two days were only around 4 hours of work total) and I am already over my goal of 3:00 max. I did not want the video to be this long but I think I'm going to have to make a long one and then speed it up somehow to make it more condensed. Still, the project (the video project) looks like it is coming along fine. There is a of editing in this so far (cutting out a second here and a second there).

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