A step by step guide to making a time lapse using a GoPro
A friend of mine recently asked me about exactly how to make a finished time lapse from his GoPro shots.
GoPro’s have become very popular, and just one of their useful functions is the ability to make time lapse movies.
Most folk get a bit exasperated though as the GoPro doesn’t spit out nice tidy TL movies, and you have to do a little bit of work to achieve the finished article.
Well its very straightforward and I’ve made this little instructional video to show you the steps required.
Steps 1 and 2 I haven’t covered in the video as these are applicable to your camera and your computer, the most relevant stuff about editing the shots and then making the video within Quicktime Pro is the heart of the matter
Ideally you will need a copy of Adobe Lightroom and I am going to assume you have a basic understanding of this program.
You will definitely need a copy of Apple’s Quicktime 7 Pro for Mac or Windows this is £20 and will make time lapses a doodle as you will see. It’s also a really useful program for all sorts of video related tasks, and well worth the price.
Here is the link.
Here is the rough breakdown of tasks.
1) Shoot your time lapse shots, I usually shoot at the lowest resolution, about 5 or 7mp there is no need to use any higher resolution unless you want to do some serious cropping, in fact 2mp would be enough for HD viewing. I normaly shoot at 1 shot per second, this means that when we make the movie and it is played back at 25 frames per second then our film will be 25x faster than normal speed. This forms the basis of all time lapse calculations. i.e. if you shoot at 1 shot every 2 secs then the end result will be 50x faster than normal, or conversely if you shoot at 2 shots per second then the end result will be 12.5x normal speed. Of course you can use any rate you like, and dependent on the subject faster or slower will be more suitable.
2) Copy the pictures from the memory card into a named folder, this folder GoProJan13Card3 was already on my hard drive from a trip. In this case there is 905 pictures which based on our previous calculation will give us a 905/25 = 36 seconds long finished video.
3) We will then import these pictures into Adobe Lightroom, where we will edit the shots en masse.
4) We will then export these pictures en masse into a new folder inside the original folder called LREdited
5) We will then open Quicktime 7 and proceed to make our movie using tools within Quicktime 7
6) We will then export this movie to a compressed H264/MP4 file.