Introduction: Making a Stop Motion LED Throwie

About: Matthew was previously a STEAM integrator with a private K-8 school. He loves taking things apart to see how they work, and will sometimes put those things back together. Much of his time is spent working with…

Making stop motions seemed like a fun thing to do, and LED Throwies are fun no matter what you're using them for. So a stop motion construction of an LED Throwie seemed like the perfect idea.

There are two video below.

Let me preface this by saying that I have never made a Stop Motion before making this. In fact, before making the below videos, I didn't even really research how to make a Stop Motion. I say this, because without knowing anything, I was able to do an decent job...know that I know some stuff, and have done some research, I'm excited to make things much more polished.

The video below covers the making of the stop motion...though time lapse...which, I realize might be a bit meta...but I think it works.

Not counting making play dough the day prior, or storyboarding on the bus, this project from sitting down to the last photograph, took 2 hours. From there, it was another 10 minutes to cut it all together to this video.

To make the stop motions the following steps were required:

  1. The day prior, I found a play dough recipe online, made it and put it in the fridge.
  2. A very rough storyboard was also created, but that is of course in storage, so I can't show you.
  3. The day of, I cut two sides off of a box that had been sent to me from amazon
    • I filled the base with play dough, and covered the sides with printer paper.
  4. LEDs, batteries, magnets and a roll of tape were on hand and ready for filming.
  5. The camera was set up, and panned around to find the best location
    • I wanted to be able to pan things off screen, and then pan back to different items
  6. A OTT Lamp was set up to provide even lighting for the scene, and pieces were placed.
  7. A rough once-through was done to make sure the camera angles were okay, and then the filming was done.
  8. The camera was plugged to the computer, and the images went straight there instead of to an SD card.
    • This would ensure I didn't have to move the camera
  9. There is a lot of software to make Stop Motions easy to do...I didn't know about those when I did this was all done by eye-balling and lining things up.
  10. Once all of the images were taken, I dragged them all into Blender and exported them to 8fps.
    • If you want to know how to do this, let me know and I'll make a separate Instructable.

In next video you can see the final exported stop motion. Unfortunately, the camera settings didn't want to stay the same for the first 13 seconds...but after that, they start working right.

Overall, it was a ton of fun, and I'm hoping to make more stuff like this. For those that want, there are apps for your phone and computer that will make this whole process much easier.

I'm hoping to redo this stop motion someday, so I can get the lighting right and add a bit of sound...though...I'm not really sure what LEDs steps sound like.