Eastern Sierra Sunrise Timelapse

Eastern Sierra Sunrise Timelapse

I have a lot of timelapse sequences that I haven’t gotten around to processing yet, but here’s one from sunrise this morning!

Timelapse videos are easy to create on your DSLR. There are many software packages which will facilitate the process, some better than others, but I’ll describe the simple and relatively low cost workflow that I currently use. You’ll need software on your PC which can convert a sequence of JPEG files to timelapse video. I use VirtualDub (free download) to create an AVI format video, then I use MPEG Streamclip (free download) to convert the huge .AVI file to a much smaller (albeit lower quality) MPEG-4 for online use. Here’s the process from shooting to finished video:

Clean your camera sensor. It is hard enough to remove dust from one image… picture having to do that 300 times. Even copying dust removal from one image to the others, the data changes over time (from shot to shot), so it really won’t work well across the whole sequence. It’s far, far better to remove the dust up front. Clean your camera sensor!.

Put your camera on a sturdy tripod. Install a fully charged battery and a blank, freshly-formatted memory card which can handle several hundred images.

Compose your image expecting to lose some of the vertical information if you’ll convert the sequence to HD video with a narrow HD shape (16:9 aspect ratio).

Manually focus your camera and switch off automatic focus. If you forget to do this, your camera will insert delays in the sequence as it hunts for focus, making the playback jerky at best. Worst case, your camera may lose focus and you’ll end up with a whole lot of blurry images.

Make some test shots to determine best exposure. If practical, set exposure manually so it won’t change from shot to shot and cause flashing (flicker) as different exposures come up during playback. If the light will change a lot during shooting (sunrise and sunset), you can use automatic exposure, but then the exposure during the video is artificially stagnant, and you’ll need to to "deflicker" the timelapse to reduce flashing from frame to frame when producing the video. You will learn some very interesting and important things about your DLSR in this process! When your DSLR changes the exposure up or down 1/3 stop from shot to shot, simply "fixing" the exposure during editing will not result in similar-looking images from shot to shot! Even adjacent images taken a fraction of a second apart may have different white balance, and a slight exposure change also affects contrast, color saturation, and so on. Once you’ve gone through the process a few times your whole approach will change and you’ll try to maximize quality and consistency in-camera, not during editing.

Shoot several hundred images in a row. You can make the timing from frame to frame consistent using an Intervalometer Trigger (external timer), or you can simply hit the shutter release over and over (perhaps use the display of the prior image on the camera rear LCD as your cue to trigger the next shot and keep them at a fairly consistent rate). Remember that your finished product will be 30 frames per second, so you’ll need 300 images for each 10 seconds of video. I recommend shooting in RAW format so you can adjust the exposures during editing, especially if you shoot at sunrise or sunset where the light will change over the course of your timelapse.

Read your camera’s files into your editing software and crop them to the 16:9 aspect ratio of HD video. Remember that you have far more resolution in your DSLR than you need for HD video, so you can perform a "digital zoom" and focus on only a portion of your original camera image. Software strong in batch editing such as Adobe Lightroom (free trial available) will enable you to apply a consistent crop, exposure adjustments and even spot removal across the entire sequence of images. You’ll also want to impose one consistent white balance across the entire sequence. Some video processing software (such as Adobe Premiere I believe) will even let you specify a starting crop and a different finishing crop, then calculate a zoom and pan across your sequence of images.

Save your files in sRGB JPEG format at 1280 x 720 resolution for video to be used on sites like YouTube or Flickr that only allow smaller 720p HD format video, or save them at 1920 x 1080 resolution for 1080p video to be uploaded to sites such as Vimeo. If you’ll use the VirtualDub software, it will want you to point to the first image in the sequence then look for a sequential numbered file, so if you used automatic exposure bracketing while shooting you may be editing and saving every third file, but you can rename them sequentially so VirtualDub can order them properly.

Read the sequence into VirtualDub. It’s important to notice when trying to import them that in the dialog box where you’re looking for the first file to select, the file format has a drop-down menu which enables you to specify that it should look for an image sequence in JPG format.

Add filters as desired, in the order that you want them to apply. For example, Virtualdub can crop and resize larger JPEGs, perform sharpening at the new lower resolution, and you can search for and install a third party "MSU deflicker" filter to improve image consistency from frame to frame across the whole video. Check your frame rate and for maximum quality (but shorter result) change the default 10 frames per second to 30.

Save the video in AVI format. That’s a very high quality format, so it may save a file of a gigabyte or more! Enjoy this high quality file on your computer (or read it into video editing software to burn it to Blue-Ray DVD).

To create smaller files for online sharing, read your .AVI file into MPEG Streamclip. Save to MPEG-4, playing with quality vs. file size tradeoffs until the results are what you want.

Upload your results to your favorite video sharing site. That’s it! It takes a little more planning to pull off well and a little more time to produce the finished result, but you can produce some amazing videos.

For more information on shooting timelapse sequences, I recommend browsing the discussion forums over on www.Timescapes.org.

A slightly expanded version of these instructions, with links to the software downloads, may be found on my blog, MyPhotoGuides.com.

Posted by Jeffrey Sullivan on 2010-11-19 06:45:12

Tagged: , sunset , timelapse , HD , 720P , video , Monitor , Pass , clouds , Jeff , Sullivan , landscape , nature , California , USA , photo , Copyright , November , 2010 , Eastern , Sierra , Canon , EOS , 5D mark II

Hot Shot Z Trains

Hot Shot Z Trains

In the last portion of the 20th Century, this train was known on the Atchinson, Topeka & Santa Fe as the 991. Seen here, the ZWSPNBY speeds through Empire, CA., on a warm afternoon. This train crew is doing their best to make up time as computers in Fort Worth, TX., are causing havoc system wide. Meanwhile, the Amtrak California San Joaquin train I was aiming for, leaves a trail of dust in the distance.

Ā©FranksRails Photography, LLC.

Posted by FranksRails Photography, LLC. on 2017-08-21 15:44:23

Tagged: , Ambulance , EMS , Police , Firefighter , Pierce , Orion , Southern Pacific , Asti , Cloverdale , Amtrak , FranksRails Photography LLC. , Caltrain , AMTK , JPBX , UP , CDTX , Coast , Sub , Peninsula , Union , Pacific , California , Autoracks , Long , Exposures , Time , Lapses , VTA , Railroad , New , Flyer , Gillig , Rapid , Routes , Trains , Busses , Rails , S.M.A.R.T. , Sonoma-Marin , Area , Rail , Transit , DMU , Nippon , Sharyo , CHP , Sonoma County Sheriff , California Highway Patrol , Golden Gate Transit , North Western Pacific Railroad , NWP , NWPRR , KSFO , San Francisco International Airport , Boeing , Airbus , Embraer , Canadair , United Airlines , American Airlines , British Airlines , Luftansa , KLM , UAE , Corvette , C2 , Southwest Airlines , Modesto , MAX , Modesto Area Transit , StaRT , Stanislaus Regional Transit , Gillig Phantom , MAX Gillig Phantom

All You Need To Know About Cheapest Car Insurance In California

All You Need To Know About Cheapest Car Insurance In California
When you live in the west coast, chances are you are looking for the cheapest car insurance in California. It may sound like a difficult and tedious task at first, but once you know how to go about it, you will realize how easy it actually is. As long as you know the ways, you will definitely find your way towards the lowest-priced company of them all.

But before you can find yourself applying for the lowest-priced policy in this side of the West Coast, you need to know the rules that you need to abide to. This also refers to the requirements imposed by the state to all its drivers. Knowledge about this information is essential and you should take time to read and understand the points of this article.

First, you need to know the requirements. To be able to apply for a policy in this state, you need to be able to prove that you are a resident. You must also be licensed but this state has already allowed some companies to no longer require a license when insuring their vehicle. You may find it easier to apply for vehicle policy in this state because of that fact.

However this state does require some minimum requirements for each driver. This pertains to the amount of the Bodily Injury Liability and the Property Damage Liability. The minimum for the Bodily Injury Liability is at least fifteen thousand dollars for every person involved and injured in the accident. The maximum amounts up to thirty thousand dollars also for every person injured in the event of a motor-vehicular accident.

The Property Damage Liability requires a minimum of five thousand dollars only. This pertains to the damages caused to the involved party’s vehicle in case you meet an accident down the road. For the maximum amount, it may differ for each company.

This information is important for you to know because the amount of damages that go beyond the maximum coverage of the state will have to come out of your pockets. It is good to know how much you are likely to spend in the event that the cost of hospital bills and vehicle repair after the accident is larger than the maximum amount of coverage allowed by the state.

It is strongly suggested that you consult different companies so you can choose from a variety of policies and also choose from a wide range of quotes that fit your budget. The cheapest car insurance in California is not that hard to find when you know the easiest way to get there.

Looking for more info on how and where to find the cheapest car insurance in California ? Get the low down in our guide to getting affordable ins .

car cleaning 101

car cleaning 101

I never realize how easy it is for a hatchback to pick up dirt/dust. Just prior to this shot, I took it to the car wash, then drove around for may be 1/2 hr and the back was already dirty! To make things worse, I didn’t notice the reflection from the umbrella until I look at it on my computer later. Bad lighting angle is bad.

Strobist: Speedlite 580 EX II full power bounced off 42" umbrella right behind camera

Posted by CHUCKage on 2009-01-30 00:03:45

Tagged: , strobist , 2008 mini , cooper , bmw , car , Redwood City , California , United States

More Clouds On The Mountains

More Clouds On The Mountains

Couldn’t help myself. All of these shots are SOOC, as my computer isn’t able to make my photoshop run. My mother board died on me not too long ago, and since replacing it, I have had nothing but trouble. On top of that, I have a ton of dust on my camera processor. That makes for a bunch of dark spots on all of my pictures. Without photoshop, I can’t fix them. Kinda makes it hard to get excited about taking pictures. šŸ™

Posted by Ren Norman on 2009-06-24 03:27:02

Tagged: , Family Reunion , Ruddell , Smith , Lakeport , Lake County , California , Family , RMN Photography , Nikon D40 , Nikon , D40

Dusty Skull

Dusty Skull

For some reason, Intel loves to call their motherboards "Skull Trail." Rather morbid if you ask me, but they didn’t ask me. This is the cover to the PCH X79 for the computer’s mother board. After I took the picture, I noticed the dust. Horrified, I quickly cleaned it off.

Posted by sjrankin on 2014-11-23 04:50:01

Tagged: , 22 November 2014 , Edited , California , Northern California , Close-up , Computer , Dust , Parts

Graphics Card Circuit Board

Graphics Card Circuit Board

Close-up of part of the graphics card for my old, derelict computer (replaced about four years ago but for some reason, I keep around). Since it’s not used, I don’t mind the dust.

Posted by sjrankin on 2014-11-23 04:50:02

Tagged: , 22 November 2014 , Edited , California , Northern California , Close-up , Computer , Dust , Parts , Circuit Board , Graphics Card , Resisters , Text

Generator and Dust

Generator and Dust

We heard a number of generators running. This one outside the registration office wasn’t enough for them to get their computers going. They made a note that we were leaving and that half a tree had fallen on our cabin — but the note was handwritten and our bill wasn’t settled.

The air got dusty whenever any kind of vehicle moved by. The mud from the flood dried to a fine powder that was easily raised — and then hung and spread all around. I’ve seen a flood after a hurricane where everything showed some kind of water mark. After this one everything looking powdered.

Posted by AntyDiluvian on 2006-09-27 13:44:49

Tagged: , death valley , california , furnace creek , furnace creek ranch , storm , thunderstorm , flash flood , mud , dust , generator , registration , office , computers , note , bill , powder , watermark



We didn’t end up looking through the main telescopes until the very end of the night, after the wonderful science lecture on "active galaxies" and black holes. (Some parts were difficult to follow, but the lecturer, David Rosario, was fairly good at explaining most of it.) The best part was a video of a star getting sling-shot around the center of a galaxy with nothing visibly present there, presumably indicating a black hole.

I enjoyed the ambience of the 36" dome more than the image I saw through it. It was neat seeing the stars, but without having too much knowledge, it may has well have been a cloud of dust.

The 40" telescope is in a very cramped room, so the ambience wasn’t the most appealing part of it. In this case, the telescope was pointed at Jupiter–something I could relate to at least. It was a bit blurry, and because of atmospheric disturbance a little shaky.

In both rooms, I tried taking some long exposures. None of them really turned out, but it was funny how many of the astronomers said "This is a stupid question, but that doesn’t have a flash, right?" (Or, in the 40", "If that has a flash, I’m going to…") When viewing through the telescopes, the rooms are kept dark with only red light allowed. A flash would have blinded everyone. (If I didn’t have the 5D, which doesn’t have a built-in flash, I probably would not have taken any pictures, worrying I’d somehow screw up turning the flash off.)

At the end, one of the astronomers asked if I wanted to take a picture through the telescope. I hadn’t even thought about it, but why not? It’s just a really powerful telephoto, right? They suggested some settings (which I used), and I just held the lens up to the eyepiece (which was specially installed for viewings like on this night; normally they use a computer), and snapped.

The image isn’t too clear, but it’s still pretty cool capturing the memory of looking through the scope.

I actually captured one of the moons, but Jupiter was overexposed. To bring out Jupiter more, I had to sacrifice the moon.

I think the history lecture helped me appreciate viewing Jupiter more. One of the moons (Amalthea) was discovered at the Lick Observatory, the first moon discovered since Galileo (though that was through the 36").

Posted by mrjoro on 2007-06-26 15:49:20

Tagged: , mthamilton , lickobservatory , santaclaracounty , diablomountains , summervisitorsprogram , observatory , jupiter , telescope , throughthetelescope , 40inchreflector , planet , starred , San Jose , California , United States of America