Time Lapse Videos
An easy and fun project for kids (and adults) is making a stop motion video.
This used to be a ridiculously difficult task involving lots of specialized equipment and days of dedicated time. Nowadays, all it takes is an iPod.
Here’s a video that my eight-year-old shot in under ten minutes during our first try at stop motion film making (yes, we’re film makers now, la-dee-dah).
Step 1: Get an iPod, an iPhone or an iPad. It must be new enough to have a camera. If you don’t have one, this is your excuse.
Step 2: Download iTimeLapse from the Apple store. Grand total: $1.99.
Step 3: Prop your iPod/iPad/iPhone up someplace where it won’t get jostled. We used an old music stand, but you can also buy a cool tripod for your iP(etc). Some come with claw-like legs that wrap around bars or door knobs.
Step 4: Start a new project and get snapping. The app is so easy to use I didn’t need to help my son set it up. There’s an option to have it shoot a picture every x seconds, or shoot when you make a loud sound like clapping your hands, or when you touch the screen. Clapping is probably best for keeping the camera steady and allowing time to set scenes, though for our first attempt we touched the screen rather than fiddle with the settings to get the right volume.
That’s it. Once you’re done you can click a link to render the video. Again, my son did this by himself, so no difficulty there. Next you can view the video, then if you like it upload it directly from your iP([a-z]*) to YouTube.
As I said, from the moment we sat down to start toying with it to the moment we came crashing down the stairs to show my wife our new video was ten minutes, tops.
Here’s the second video. My oldest son stayed up late and put this together in an hour. I can see how you could get sucked into spending hours doing this. Looks like a good weekend coming up.