Time Lapse over 6 months in remote location at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Special Mounts and Applications


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old February 8th, 2006, 05:55 AM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Ireland
Posts: 159
Time Lapse over 6 months in remote location

Hi all

I want to record the changing season from around now until mid summer. I want to shoot multiple locations and in some locations I want to introduce movement into the shot...

Note: I will not be able to leave the camera in the location for the duration of the shoots for obvious reasons :)

What I have tried to do is setup the camera and try to identify the spot exactly every time. Then make sure the camer is pointing at the exact same position so that when I merge the footage later it does not jump about.

Othere thing I'd like to do is rotate the camera slowly. Final effect would be to see the scene change from spring into summer as it pans around.

Q1: Is there any software for mac that will use my last weeks shooting as an overlay so that I can realign the camera exactly for the still shots?

Q2: How can I rotate my camera slowly? Not by hand I presume...

Q3: Any ideas on tripod mounts? My budge is small so ideas on how to build mounts that can be resued would be cool.

Ok, there are probably more issues that I need to be aware of... I'm listening

Thanks in advance
Donie
__________________
Macbook Pro 2.0Ghz and Canon XL2
Donie Kelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 8th, 2006, 08:35 AM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Posts: 624
I'd sugest looking into having part of the mount remain fixed in the location. - much like a geographical survay marker.

Ideally I'd sugest a 100% solid mount, like pourd concrete. Or many attached to a permenent object, like a larger boulder, or a building perhaps.
Then have an indexing key to lock a caled panhead to.

I'm thinking: Dig a hole, and fill it with concrete, but put a square tube into the contrete before it sets. Then have a panhead with angles marked (or use a potractor) that uses a sqaure mount to lock it into position over or into that sqare tube.

Or even somethign that dones't lock into position, but allows you to use a scale against a local stationary object.

DUH! (I'm thinking as I type) .. or you could just use a compass to set your pan angle!

And if you can't use a physical referance at the location, try GPS, or better yet, ranging (Where you line up two distant objects - one pair will put on you a line, 2 pairs will give you an absoloute position.)

Also, maybe you can shoot a little wide and then fine tune by cropping?

There's just some brainstorm ideas, let us know how it turns out!

- Mikko
Mikko Wilson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 8th, 2006, 08:48 AM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Philadelphia, PA, USA
Posts: 548
Instead of stabilizing by hand, you could use tracking software such as the features in After Effects Pro to stabilize the resulting "video".

For panning, perhaps you could shoot panoramic photos at each shoot, stitch them together with something like RealViz Stitcher to get individual frames that have a 180 degree field of view horizontally, then do the pan as an animation once you have a sequence of very wide, stabilized frames. This approach has the added benefit of letting you CHANGE the direction and/or speed of the pan long after the photography was completed.

Mmmm. Sounds like a fun project. :)
__________________
Nick Jushchyshyn Matchmoving, Compositing, TD
imdb
Nick Jushchyshyn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2006, 01:19 PM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Croydon, England
Posts: 277
Suggestion for positioning - if you're taking a laptop or monitor along on the shoot to monitor your camera output, a cheapass solution is to get a sheet of clear acetate and stick it over the monitor/laptop screen, frame up the shot then draw all the landmarks onto the acetate using a cd marker pen. Make sure you mark the position of the corners of the screen as well just in case you have to remove the acetate. Then, next time you return to your location stick the acetate back over the screen, the acetate will show exactly where everything should sit on the screen. To help you find your original position, You could also use spray paint around the feet of your tripod to mark where on the ground you set up (put the feet in plastic bags beforehand so that you don't permanently paint your equipment!)

For the moving shots, If your finished video is to be in standard definition, get hold of an HDV camera for the scenes you want as moving scenes. Film as a wide static shot on HDV, then zoom into the image in the edit suite and pan around within the original HDV frame - because of the higher HDV resolution you should be able to zoom in a lot before it looks any different to your standard DV footage

Hope this helps
Paul Jefferies is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2006, 04:44 PM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 795
check out iStopMotion from boinx:

http://www.istopmotion.com/

I know it allows you to overlay the previous frame over the live video; not sure if you can do it with a saved file though.

edit: I played around with it and you can shoot a frame, save the project, and then re-open it later and overlay the last frame (or any frame, for that matter) over the live video, so I think it might be the best solution for what you are trying to do.

Last edited by Evan Donn; February 9th, 2006 at 11:53 PM.
Evan Donn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2006, 04:27 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Ireland
Posts: 159
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan Donn
check out iStopMotion from boinx:

http://www.istopmotion.com/
Hi Evan

Thansk for that. SOunds like it's exactly what i need. Thanks to all the othere for your suggestions. I'll post the finised shot in the summere if I can make it do what I need.

Donie
__________________
Macbook Pro 2.0Ghz and Canon XL2
Donie Kelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2006, 06:52 AM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 547
Quote:
Q1: Is there any software for mac that will use my last weeks shooting as an overlay so that I can realign the camera exactly for the still shots?
The first After Effects suggestion is good.

A different way to do it is to align each frame with the "difference" mode blending them. This highlights edge detail and misalignment between the images, making it pretty easy to super-impose them and get them optimally alligned.

-Steve
Steven White is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2006, 06:53 AM   #8
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Ireland
Posts: 159
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven White
A different way to do it is to align each frame with the "difference" mode blending them. This highlights edge detail and misalignment between the images, making it pretty easy to super-impose them and get them optimally alligned.
-Steve
I must try that. Thanks for the tip...

Donie
__________________
Macbook Pro 2.0Ghz and Canon XL2
Donie Kelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 12th, 2006, 07:24 AM   #9
Trustee
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Sydney Australia
Posts: 1,570
I was once asked about doing something like this for building project but they wanted several POVs. Never ended up doing the job but the simplest answer was security style cameras and a HD recorder. Mains power was available but even if not could be done with several cheap fixed still cameras. Having to go back to the site everyday was the killer part of the problem so being able to leave it running for a week or a month would have been a life saver.
Bob Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 12th, 2006, 10:33 AM   #10
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: US & THEM
Posts: 827
Hmm

no matter how accurate you think you can match up the shots youre gonna get jitter, the eye is sensitive to even a few pixels jitter so with that flashing at 25 fps it might bring on a fit:)

my thoughts are

1 use a still camera - at least 6 mega pixel

2 shoot slightly wider to give you some cropping space

3 use stabilization software to remove misalignments

4 peg out three points so you can always place the tripod in the same place - also mark your tripod with the height, pan and tilt angles

5 as for panning - overlap your still shots by 20% and use panoramic software to produce a panoramic still - then pan within that still using your NLE

6 exposure is gonna be a big problem - so get yourself a Kodak grey card and set exposure to that - it will still throb a little so you may be stuck in post for a while
__________________
John Jay

Beware ***PLUGGER-BYTES***
John Jay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 12th, 2006, 05:37 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: san miguel allende , gto , mexico
Posts: 644
In addition to istopmotion which has onion skinning , you can stabilize with istabilize- both mac solution for less than $100. If you want hd , you can use the hd plugin for istopmotion and then use a dslr to capture. Always shoot the same hour. Another solution is use film. They're many s8 cameras that have a built in invalometer. Kurth
Kurth Bousman is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Special Mounts and Applications

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:16 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network