Time lapse photography is something that I have wanted to try but never got around to, because I didn’t have the photography equipment I needed to do a good job. Things have changed and I now have the ideal photographic accessory the Zhiyun Smooth Q gimbal stabilizer.
Since owning the Smooth Q the weather has been terrible, and I really have no inclination to get outside and spend an hour or so capturing a time lapse. Whilst visiting a friend’s house for lunch I noticed there were some new additions to his family, and these were some tropical fish. Looking at the tank I had an idea – to try some time lapse photography in the comfort (and warmth) of his lounge whilst digesting the Sunday lunch.
Had it been my house and my fish tank I would have re-arranged the furniture so I could position the camera in the best position for a good composition. Had it been my house and my fish tank I would have spent some time manually setting the exposure, color balance etc. and added a filter to get the correct shutter speed for the frame rate. Unfortunately it wasn’t my house, and it wasn’t my fish tank therefore all I could do was set the camera in automatic mode, position it in front of the fish tank, hit the record button and let the camera do its thing.
Below is a clip of the results, i.e. my first ever time lapse photography project.
The whole process took just over an hour, set to capture an image every 3 seconds. I appreciate the subject matter isn’t to everyone’s taste and some people will find it a little boring, but I have to say for a first attempt I am quite impressed and time lapse is definitely something I am going to do more of. The only problem I have at the moment is deciding what subjects would make a good time lapse video. Sure, I could do a city scene, the local highway, the local park etc. but these subjects have been done to death. I want to capture something a little different and unique – so I guess I am going to have to get my thinking cap on.
What I used to capture this time lapse
The gear I used to capture this time lapse comprised:
. I appreciate this is old technology and there are newer versions of the iPhone available – but being stuck with an old and out of date iPhone is what happens when you sign up to a 24 month contract. Fortunately, I am due an upgrade soon and I know for sure the next mobile phone I get the image quality will be several times better.
Zhiyun Smooth Q
To keep everything nice and stable, even when the phone was accidentally knocked, I used the Zhiyun Smooth Q gimbal stabiliser. The Zhiyun Smooth Q does everything the DJI mobile does, but at a fraction of the cost. Okay, the Zhiyun Smooth Q may not be built to the same standard as the DJI Mobile, but it is still a tough and durable product that is more than up to the job. You can buy the Zhiyun Smooth Q gimbal stabiliser from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and eBay.com Go on and check it out. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what a great product this is.
Manfrotto Befree tripod
To keep the Smooth Q and camera in place I used my Manfrotto Befree travel tripod. This travel tripod is small, light and very sturdy. I would say the Manfrotto Befree is a bit of an overkill for this particular set up, but then since I already owned the Befree before buying the Zhiyun Smooth Q it makes sense to use it. The Befree is an awesome tripod and gets rave reviews. You can buy the Manfrotto Befree travel tripod (make sure you check out those reviews first) from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and eBay.com
Keen photographer addicted to cameras, lenses and everything photography related. Feel free to follow me in my photography ramblings, and if you have any thoughts, comments, queries or anything else to add I would love to hear from you.