I want to encourage everyone to make the stop motion video. It's not hard task and it could give a real satisfaction to the maker. You could even be Your's family director-hero ;-)
I'm not talking about the ordinary time lapse video. I mean the real stop motion short movie with the script, requisites and soundtrack and a little studio.
I've made such stop motion surrealistic video so You can watch it to see about what exactly this instructable is about.
So let's begin.
Step 1: Script & Screenplay
First of all You need to make a script. It's not so easy at it seems to be.
Decide what do You want to film, what would be the IDEA of the video. Then try to write it and add some beggining, end etc. Write it down. It will be Your script-short description.
Now think about the scenes You want to have in the video. Once again write it down. Detail level depends on You and Your imagination, but I recommend to just name the scenes and do the flow diagram showing what do You want to film after what. This will be Your screenplay.
Script and screenplay aren't necessary (You could have it all in Your mind), but they are really helpfull. You could predict the scenes and make them without the right order. It is sometimes usefull.
Step 2: Studio & Camera
You can make the studio using cardboard, bedsheed, table.. etc. The most important two things are: lighting and the steady photo camera.
Any type of the photo camera would be ok. You could use even Your phone. In fact using the phones could be easier because there are a lot of applications which allows to make the stop motion videos in very easy way. If You will be using DSLR cameras i recommend to buy/attach to them remote (could be with wire on wifi) pilot to trigger the photos. Oh, one more thing - use the tripod. It's important not to move the camera during the scene.
Now set up You scene. Put all 'actors' in front of Your camera and remember about the good light. Try to not use the hard light generating the dense shadows. For example, instead of pointing the bright lamp to the scene, point it to the ceiling. The lights will be then scattered and will make the scene soft.
Step 3: Shooting (Camera... Action!)
Shooting is the main part of the stop motion video makking. It could be fun or it also could be boring ;-)
You will have to repeat this steps: 1 move the 'actors' a little bit 2 taka a photo 3 go to the first step
Repeat the steps above until You complete Your whole scene.
Important:: It's good to make the whole scene at once. Do not film the half at the scene in the evening and the other part next day morinig. It will probably generate the difference in the lightinig (i suppose You would be makeing the video at home in room with windows, not in special made studio)
Step 4: Postproduction - Soundtrack and SFX
Now, when You have all the scenes made You have a lot of photos.
You can use a lot of software to make the video from the pictures. The best are commercial ones such as Adobe Premiere, but I recommend to search for the free open source ones. For example, If You are using Mac or Linux, You could use the Kdenlive software to make the video.
The choices are so mane that I won't describe how to make video in every program. I encourage You to find the software and then search the internet how to use it. All I can now, I could show You how to use Kdenlive in stop motion Video. I'm using it and Ive made short tutorial about making movies from pictures. It can be found here:
The last part of the movie making is the soundtrack. Do not ignore this step. It could really change Your production (in both ways down or up). First add the sfx-sounds. You can record own sounds or use the free sounds from the sites in internet. Google the phraze: 'free sounds' or 'free sfx sounds' and You will get a lot of results.
Same thing about the music. Try to find the suitable music in the Google Creative Commons Search.
Note: be carefull what music and sounds You are using. Read the authors licences. Some of them require the credits which You have to include in Your video. DO not forget about them.