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Learn how to speed up time and create compelling visual effects with time-lapse photography. Join Rich Harrington in the field as he captures nature's patterns at Red Rock Canyon in southwestern Nevada, and shows how to frame your scene and choose the proper camera settings. He'll show you how to capture great images, whether you're using a DSLR camera and a motorized slider or just a smartphone you have handy. Then join him back in the studio to transform your still footage into a storytelling time-lapse video, using tools like Photoshop, Premiere Pro, and Final Cut Pro.
This course was created and produced by Rich Harrington. We are honored to host this content in our library.
Rich: Once you've imported an image sequence, you need to make a couple decisions about frame rate. One, is the frame rate you're going to deliver. Is it a 24p, video file? Or 5994 for HD broadcast? And you also need to decide, what is the frame rate,that you want to interprete the imported frames as. Both of these are easy to control. Let's start with the Clip itself. If I right click on a clip I could choose Interpret Footage > Main. You can also access this from the File menu and choose Interpret Footage. what I need to do now is assign a frame rate.
I can be very specific like 23.76, or I can assign a frame rate of, say, 12 frames per second. Ultimately, it's up to you to decide how many frames are going to be used throughout. I'll typically assign the frame rate that matches my video delivery. So, 23.976, in this case, is going to match my delivery format. While you're at it, you can also deal with other aspects, but there are no things like alpha channels. Nor are we going to be separating fields. So, I'll just press Return to apply that. And you'll see the duration of the clip has been reinterpreted as three seconds. I'll now add this to a new composition.
Typically, I'll click the new comp icon and use the preset category. It's up to you to decide what is your delivery frame rate and size. I'll generally stick with the square pixel sizes. So, you'll see these here, the ones labelled HDTV use square pixels. Ones that are just labelled HDV or DVCPRO tend to use non-square pixels. And this is often used by professional video cameras for tape-based formats. But generally speaking, the square pixel equivalent is the better choice.
So, let's choose that and I'll assign the same frame rate to match. And I'll name my comp. At this point, I could drop the clip down. Now, this particular shot is shorter than my composition setting. Using the composition settings, I can easily adjust and decide what is the desired duration. So, if I wanted an eight second shot, I could just type that in and click OK. Still, my shot is not long enough.
When I shot this in the field, I had plenty of frames to fill this out but let's just imagine that you didn't get enough frames or you wanted to slow the time-lapse down. Fortunately, you can stretch it right inside of AfterEffects. Right click on the Column header, and choose Columns, Duration, or Columns, Stretch. This gives you two ways to change the duration. If I wanted this to be an eight second exactly, I could do that.
But I'll tell you this much. Stretching something 266.6666666666666 times is a lot of math. I'm better off just switching that to 300% and letting it smooth it. Doing things like doubling, tripling or halving the frame rate is a lot easier for the computer to do. By stretching this clip 300%, I'm essentially telling After Effects to show each frame for three frames. So, for every still that I shot in the field, it's going to keep that up for three frames before it goes to the next.
Now, you can decide to have it jump from those or blend in between. And we'll take a look at the advanced Frame blending next.
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