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Tracking the sun's position


show more Tracking the sun's position provides you with in-depth training on Photography. Taught by Richard Harrington as part of the Creating Time-Lapse Video show less
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Tracking the sun's position

Rich: We need to determine the overall interval. How much time are we going to try to capture here? Now, one thing we might be trying to do is record where the sun is at a particular point in time. Maybe I want to see the sun move from one side to the other. Now in this case the sun is already getting ready, it's gone behind the mountains. We're getting towards the end of our day. That's okay, I'm not going to worry about the sun but let me show you how I track it. I like to use an app called Sun Seeker. It's available for both IOS and Android, and one of the cool things about it is when I flip it over into 3D View.

It actually uses the camera in my phone so I could turn my body and it's going to show me where the sun is at this point in time. For example, maybe we're doing some locations scouting, because actually, I'm coming back here tomorrow to do some more shooting. So, why don't we pick where the sun's going to be tomorrow, so we can get another shot. And I see that tomorrow morning. The sun is going to come up right about over there.

And it looks to me like it's going to cross around 6 a.m.. And it looks like it's going to cross the mountain there around 6:30, it's going to break the screen. It will go above the mountain range around 6:30. I also can check that information. The good news here is that we have a details list and this shows me the sunrise and sunset for my current location. I guessed 6:30, it says it rises at 6:21 AM. Of course, I guessed 6:30, because there's a mountain range over there.

And so it looks to me that around 6:20 it's going to break the horizon. Probably around 6 a.m., it's going to light up the sky. And around 6:30 it's going to just start peaking past that mountain. Where this all comes into play is you want to determine your interval. In this case, let's say I want to go ahead and record for about 20 minutes. We need 360 frames. That's pretty straightforward. But I want those frames spread out over 20 minutes.

Well, how many seconds is that? So, 20 minutes times 60 seconds in a minute, means that I've got 1,200 seconds to work with. And so I need 360 frames recorded over those 1,200 seconds. So that's easy. I take the 1,200, I divide it by the 360, and I get, of course, a nice easy number of 3.3333333, a nice infinite number. Well, that's okay. Why don't I just go one shot every three seconds and that'll get me pretty close to what I need.

So now that I know the interval, I can go ahead and get the camera ready to shoot.

Tracking the sun's position
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Tracking the sun's position provides you with in-depth training on Photography. Taught by Richard Harrington as part of the Creating Time-Lapse Video

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