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Making a Time-lapse with Photoshop

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In this tutorial we’ll take a look at how to make a time-lapse in Adobe Photoshop using photos taken with an interval timer or other continuous mode.

 

A video posted by Dave Williams (@hybriddave) on

First off, we need to shoot our scene using the interval mode on our camera. Take a look at your camera’s handbook or have a scout around online to find out how to do this, or send a question to Hybrid Dave via Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. When shooting our scene we need to consider the fact that it should be quite a long series of shots. The number of frames taken is divided by the number of frames per second to establish the final length of our timelapse video. If we shoot 100 frames and make our video 20 frames per second, we’ll end up with a 5 second video. Take this into consideration when you shoot.

Next up, when we get back to the lightroom, process all the images in bulk and apply the same corrections across them all to keep them consistent. When we’ve done our post process to the image files, they must be saved as .jpg in their own folder so that they are able to be used by Adobe Photoshop.

To load our photo series into Adobe Photoshop we need to select FILE > OPEN and then navigate to the correct folder. Select only the first image in the series and then click on the box marked ‘Image Sequence.’ It’s worth noting that in order to find this box you may need to select ‘Options’ in the lower left hand corner.

 

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This will open the series of images into Adobe Photoshop and a dialogue box appears marked ‘Frame Rate.’

This box allows you to select the number of frames per second for your video. We can select any number here, but let’s remember our earlier consideration when shooting which determined the length of our timelapse. In this example I am using 4fps, however it is recommended that 24fps makes for comfortable viewing to the human eye.

 

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When we click ‘OK’ we’ll see one image in the main panel and at the bottom of the panel there’s a ‘Timeline’ tab. This contains all our video related controls, including fades and trimming, which we can use to alter the overall feel of our timelapse if we need to.

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When opening the files into Adobe Photoshop they’re stitched together at the frame rate specified and the work has been done for us! To save your time-lapse as a file you can use, click FILE > EXPORT > RENDER VIDEO

 

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The dialogue box we’re presented with allows you to select the save destination, the format of the video, and several other options. Once you click ‘Render’ the saving process begins and a few moments later you’ll have a time-lapse video saved and ready to use.

 

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The process really is that simple! So long as you put the work in when shooting your sequence of images, it’s a straight forward process in Adobe Photoshop to get your time lapse out of the back end.

About Dave Williams (10 Articles)
Dave Williams uses the alias Hybrid Dave. He is a travel and lifestyle photographer and retoucher based in London, UK

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