Time Lapse Photography With a Webcam




About: Cool, another box!

In this little 'ible Ill show you how to use your webcam as a timelapse photography device for... well just about anything.

The program Ill be using to control the cam whilst im away, is called Flix, theres a demo out there on the website.



On to the how-to

**Sorry for the BW pictures, my IR camera wont go back to being a regular camera**

Step 1: Gather Hither and Bring Your Materials!

What you are going to need is this:
A webcam (1st image) *
A scene (2nd)
Flix 3.3 (3rd)
Time (4th)

  • Make sure you have your webcam drivers installed.

Step 2: Set Up Your Webcam

I just simply hooked mine to my monitor like I always do.
Since its stripped down to the logic board, it likes to hang there.

If your webcam is still in a shell, you could either:
Take it apart
Put it somewhere where the cord wont cause it to move

Step 3: Setup Flix

To setup flix I reccomend this setup:
Delay: 10
Dir: C:\

Step 4: Start Flix and Goto Bed

After you get the setup complete, hit the start button, kill your monitor, and goto bed.
Its interesting to watch yourself sleep, so i decided to do a time lapse of it.
Hence this instructable.

Step 5: Movie Time!

After you wake up... its time to make a compilation of the pictures!
Sounds hard right? Making all the thousands of individual pictures into frame in a 25 fps movie...

Flix has this built in, so no need to worry!

Hit the stop button (where the start button used to be)
Now leave all the settings alone, except if you want to change the framerate, or skip every other, etc

Note the video duration box, does it say like 689?
Who wants to watch a 689 second video of someone sleeping?
Thats when you should up the framerate to about 30 and skip every other frame.

When alls done and done, you feel that the time is reasonable, hit the Make Video button.

A box will pop up asking for a codec, use the drop down box and select the DivX Codec.

The waaaaiiiting is the hardest part (guitar solo)

After its done, another box will pop up saying that output.avi has been created!

Open 'er up and watch yourself!

Step 6: Watch the Videos

Feel free to upload any videos that you make in the comments section, I love to see what you guys are making!

Here ill start:

This is my video of me sleeping.

The second (clouds.avi) is just the clouds going by...

Im making another of my neighborhood, from my window.



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    12 Discussions


    8 years ago on Introduction

    You can use .. omg.. I just saw the date, i'm pretty late, by years, but still for people wanting to know - you can use Yawcam, it's amazing and it's free. You need to install it, of course, then you can set intervals to shots, after youv'e got your pictures taken, you can then convert it into a movie by using the same software. Movies are mad in .mov format (works with VLC). It's also got motion detection (infrared) and live streaming. I've used it for many of my time lapse projects and it's not bad at all, besides no watermarking or licensing issue.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Yawcam is like death on a stick, it saves images every 10 seconds but each image is a duplicate. It is as if it takes the first image and just copies it.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    well i like thisim downloading it right now


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I tried it very briefly (only a 2 second video) but on the picture screen when you click START and all the pictures in the folder and the video are all black. Do you have to buy it? I saw the "shutter" flashing 'cause I saw the watermark popping up every ten seconds.

    3 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    It's still black on the frame viewing window and when I change to the Divx codec its says license required and puts it in .avi format (which is a black movie)

    Rob Kkonablue

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I know this is a response to a old comment but I had that same problem. I found out that you cant run the camera preview and try to run Flix at the same time. Run Flix with out the camera preview.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I use Dorgem to control my webcam. It does motion detection too.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    For OS X, there's a great open-source app called Gawker that does the same thing.