The purpose of this page is to keep track of techniques I use when filming with the GoPro 3+ Black. Hopefully they will be of help to someone; at the very least it will be good reference for me later on. So, without further ado...
Well, I got one under my belt, and holy shit did I learn a few things doing so. Before I get into all that, here is the completed timelapse, set to the song "Electronic Dream" by Araabmuzik:
Originally when I watched several Youtube videos on working with GoPro footage I was skeptical that the free GoPro Studio Edit software was "sophisticated" enough. It looked too simple, almost dumbed down. Well, I was wrong. Their software has exactly the right amount of features and customizations. Sure, there are presets and templates, but you don't have to use them. So if you're just starting, go download it. Seriously.
September 26-28, 2014
I filmed my first timelapse over the course of a weekend. I had an idea to film myself staring into the camera with trippy electronic music in the background. Through trial and error I discovered lots of basic fundamentals for using the GoPro:
- Sunlight shots almost always look better than shadow shots. Period.
- Be mindful of your animals- they have an uncanny ability to sense when you're filming and get right in the way. Nothing ruins a scene like a random tail in the bottom of your field of view. They can also cast unwanted shadows and be distracting to the subject.
- If you have the LCD Touch BacPac, you can position a small handheld mirror behind the screen to preview your shot. Really handy if you are shooting self-portraits.
- When shooting timelapses, movements are magnified a LOT. Espeically when you lower your photos per second. The video clips above were shot at 1 photo per 5 seconds and even the smallest head tilt or breath was very noticeable in post-processing.
- Time-consuming though it may be, always preview each still image before batch importing the entire stack into GoPro Studio Edit. Look out for things like unwanted shadows, closed eyes and stray hair. It will save you having to remove, re-import and re-convert.
- Feel free to lower the resolution of individual images in the settings of the GoPro. I found that 7MP Wide was plenty high enough to produce a 1080p final movie.
- Don't rest the GoPro on something and expect the shot to be stable. Even the smallest movement due to wind will move the entire frame and cause your timelapse to look out of whack.
- Clouds are awesome in timelapses. Whenever possible try to include clouds in your shots.
- If you aren't sure there's enough light on your face, take a preview shot FIRST before filming 3 minutes of timelapse photos. It will save you loads of time later on.
The LCD Touch BacPac, while handy to frame shots, uses a LOT of battery power (it also heats up quite a bit). Be mindful if you are shooting longer timelapses.
What do you *put* the GoPro on while filming?
I am using the GoPole Scenelapse as a mini "tripod" base for filming timelapses. It makes for a great stand that can fit in tight spots because it is lot smaller than a tripod.