Sitting at home in Exeter one Sunday afternoon flicking through the met office weather I soon came to the relalisation a sunset was potentially on the cards. Deciding where to go on the other hand is always up for debate Do I go to a location we already have footage of or do I head to somewhere new that I haven't been to before? After a look at the map and a whizz around Google Earth I took off in the car to Yar Tor in hope of capturing some of the heather. I arrived in plenty of time and the …

Bowerman’s Nose under Moonlight

Bowerman's Nose under moonlight

Returning to shoot the same scene can feel a little frustrating when you know you could have potentially saved time and effort. But coming back and learning from your previous mistakes and with more knowledge certainly feels satisfying, especially when you know you've captured what you set out to do. After my previous night time visit to Bowerman's Nose I knew that using the dolly and having the moonlight would transform the scene. Again, this required another wild camp so I could monitor the … [Read more...]

This was to be my first real attempt at a sunrise timelapse using the Stage Zero Dolly. I was feeling pretty anxious as all the thoughts that the timelapse won't come together because of a small mistake, poor timing, equipment failure (Anything that could go wrong really!) With the potential of mist forecast I awoke very early and made the 25 minute journey onto the moor, as I got closer I began to drive through patches of mist which just seemed to get thicker the higher I got until it …

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...]

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...]

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...]

A promising yet optimistic weather forecast the other weekend gave me plenty of excuses to get out onto the moors to try out a couple of timelapse tests. I shot a couple of sequences, both in JPEG and RAW to see the differences in processing time and the use of memory. Now I say the word unfortunately loosely when talking about the resolution of the Nikon D800 but when one uncompressed RAW file can be as large as 80mb it certainly causes a few problems, not only with the size of memory cards, …

I'm feeling pretty chuffed right now. Don't worry, I didn't do anything clever, I just used a simple peice of software called LRTimelapse to put together a 'Holy Grail' sequence. The 'Holy Grail' in time-lapse photography is capturing a sequence of images from day to night or vice versa. This requires exposure changes during the sequence often resulting in visible steps. The holy grail is to come up with a solution with no such steps visible; a seamless sequence. I won't go into details here …

More tests this weekend over at Black Tor... I have a vision of this being one of the locations in the opening sequence to show the solitude of the moor. Guy has some great ideas too. I went there with heavy clouds overhead and the odd break passing through, perfect conditions in many respects. One thing that I didn't account for were the numerous ten tors groups using Black Tor as a meeting point. I got so fed up of waiting that eventually I started intercepting the groups and directing them …

Before we started the project Guy and I knew there would be a technical learning curve. Whilst we are both well versed in the techniques of capturing professional quality stills the techniques of time-lapse are a little different and require some further learning. Key amongst these is the time compression aspect of time-lapse photography. You need to select a suitable capture interval and shutter speed so that the scene you are shooting is turned into a smooth video. You can imagine for example …