After taking several pictures of clouds outside my home, I noticed that they were at very nearly the same direction. By viewing them in rapid succession, they almost looked like a frame-by-frame time-lapse animation. I decided to turn it into an animated .gif file to share with my friends and family. Here's how I did it!

Step 1: Take Pictures

Find something interesting but which changes or moves slowly -- in this case, the weather. I stood in my backyard and took several pictures of the same general area, while standing in the same place.
As I'll show later on, having a steady hand is marginally important; just try to get the same general area in every shot. My technique in this particular case was to point the camera in such a way that the viewscreen showed the exact same object in the corner -- a small garden decoration -- in each shot.
Take as many as you like, until your arm gets tired, or until your camera runs out of memory! For this example, eleven shots will suffice. Make sure the shots are evenly timed, as good as you can. The more evenly-spaced they are, the smoother your animation will look in the end. For fast clouds, like here, I spaced the shots 2-3 seconds apart. For slow clouds, 5-10 seconds is better.
I will play with it on my linux box and see what goes....
I've used this method quite a few times before. Although, I've been straying away from .GIFs... the lack of pure RGB (or otherwise, i.e. CMYK) is not quite so pretty for photo animations. But, that's why there's Javascript, MPEGs, AVIs, et al. Still, this is a very nice instructable! If the align_stack function doesn't suit your fancy (it does mine =cD) then I suppose you could manually crop out the troublesome border.
Indeed! Thanks for the input! And yes, this isn't intended to be a sophisticated, artsy expression of anyone's inner poet. It's for when you want to put only half your butt into animating a time-lapse. :D
I guess there's something to be said for the lazier and easier ways. Anywho, I just followed your instructable to the letter and came out with a very nice result! And the .GIF indexing -that I detest so much- can be sidestepped by conversion to grayscale. They were black and white images =cD
Post it here, if you dare!
I do dare, sir. I'm taking a second time lapse of an alarm clock (isn't that the standard test?) with my infrared-converted PS2 EyeToy. It's actually pretty nice. Anywho, the first gif was pretty low quality, so I'll see if converting something almost grayscale to grayscale –as opposed to indexing, bleh!– will do anything.
Good method, but you might be better off using a plugin such as hugin's image stack align method which will do the matching more accurately and quickly.
Yeah, that's exactly the idea I had. Or you can use a tripod and intervalometer!
Did you get to make a time-lapse you could post here?
http://hugin.sourceforge.net It's primary application is as a panorama creator but the align_stack function it uses to match points in the different angled photos does this job. It can stretch and adjust slightly each photo to match the key points together.
Thanks! That looks amazing! It certainly would make the layering process easier. I'll edit the Instructable to mention it.
I have gimp but don't really know how to use it. Thanks for the instructable!

About This Instructable




Bio: I'll cut and paste stuff here as time goes on.
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