Colly Brook Primroses

Primroses on the Colly Brook. Over the years I have got to know the best spots, but this was a new one.

One of the seasonal cues for spring are the flowers that appear on Dartmoor. The best flowers to photograph are the primroses, that come out in late march, and the bluebells which come out in late may. In the past I have photographed the Primroses along a nearby stream (the Colly Brook) many times so I was looking forward to producing the timelapse. It was pretty awkward getting this timelapse set up due to the confined space I was working in but it worked out in the end. One … [Read more...]

Bluebells

Bluebells clinging to a steep slope

During May and into July I made repeated visits to Burrator Woods to photograph the bluebells. Like all the other native flowers the bluebells were late this year by a week or two. When they eventually came into flower at the start of June however, they did not disappoint. In previous years the bluebells have been a bit washed out and thin on the ground. I have watched with amusement as beginner photographers who likely hadn't seen a good covering attempted to recreate the kind of saturation … [Read more...]

Black Tor Sunset

black-tor-sunset

I'd planned to spend the evening shooting bluebells. One of the problems with being in woodland is that you cant see what the sky is doing and when I walked briefly out of the wood and saw the sky I made an immediate decision to change plans. Running back to the car with the time-lapse rail under my arm I realised I didn’t have time to get to any of the locations I had planned to shoot at sunset. First I tried Leeden Tor, but once up there I found only 1 strong composition and … [Read more...]

Brentor Mist

brentor-mist

6 years ago I made my first early morning hikes onto Dartmoor with my camera. On the way up from Peter Tavy you have an almost constant view across to Brentor and often I have seen mist gliding down the valley below. The prominence of Brentor makes it pretty clear that in perfect conditions only the church would rise above the mist and I've previously thought how great it would be to capture it like this. On this particular summer morning mist had been forecast and I got up at 03.40 … [Read more...]

Milky Way Timelapse on Staple Tor

I've known for some time that the early hours of the morning around midsummer tend to be the best time to photograph the Milky Way, but like so many of my photography plans, weather and life have got in the way. When Guy and I discussed plans for our time-lapse film of Dartmoor we were keen to include a number of night scenes (there are plenty still in the pipeline). Top of my list was Staple Tor which I knew could be photographed from a number of points as the night progressed. I camped up … [Read more...]

It's been a great learning experience shooting these timelapses. There are plenty of hurdles to overcome and it's been a fairly steep learning curve (not least with regards to software and processing!). One thing that becomes increasingly apparent are the benefits of preparation, planning and dedication. We have 11 months left now to shoot our timelapse so we are into the 'no second chances' phase of our timelapse. If the Autumn is bad or the snow doesn’t come in winter then we can't wait till …

Up to this point LRTimelapse has been fantastic and we have been using the slideshow export feature of Lightroom, along with LRT presets, to create our clips. Whilst LRTimelapse itself does a stunning job of transitioning between exposures, essentially creating frames that are ready to compile, there are limitations. The biggest issue is that you cant do slow and smooth crop transitions (so called Ken Burns) without introducing some jitter. The moves just aren't smooth enough and if there is one …

LRTimelapse transition problems

LRTimelapse is a fantastic peice of software for producing timelapses with Lightroom. However lightrooms own limitations result in slight jitter if you introduce a slow 'Ken Burns'. I think in future I will consider using LRTimelapse for the RAW metadata setting and aftereffects for the compilation and transition. Incidentally, this problem isn't really apparent with a fast crop transition. I understand its largely due to the fact that Lightroom cannot do sub-pixel cropping. This comparison … [Read more...]

I had hoped that this would be the first video to 'make the cut' so to speak, but the motion is a little too slow and there is a wobble at about 5 seconds which ruins it. Next time around I will also select a slightly wider aperture, I think the sunstar produced at f19 is just a tiny bit too big! …

I've been away from Dartmoor for the passed couple of weeks so no new time lapses to share. However I did shoot a rooftop test from my (shared) house in Bristol. This test was really just to practice the 'Holy Grail' exposure transition method and try and get my first professional quality sequence! This was the most stringent test to date in terms of exposure transitions. Through the hour long capture sequence the exposure was changed by 3 stops in 1/2 stop increments. The process of manually …