#time-lapse

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

locations include:

Bicentennial Park
Brooker Creek Preserve
Clearwater Beach
Cooper’s Bayou Park
Courtney Campbell Causeway
Crystal Beach
Dunedin Causeway
Fred Howard Park
John Chestnut Senior Park
Lansbrook Lakefront Park
Philippe Park
Pop Stansell Park
R.E. Olds Park
Sunset Beach
The Dunedin Youth Guild Park
Veterans Memorial Marina Park

(some of these weren’t shot to be used in a video, though they fit in nicely) locations include: A.L. Anderson Park Bicenntennial Park Brooker Creek Buffer Preserve Clearwater Memorial Causeway Countryside Community Park Courtney Campbell Causeway Crystal Beach Ed Radice Park Fred Howard Park Harbor Palms Nature Park Honeymoon Island James E. Grey Preserve John Chestnut Park Kapok Park Lake Chautauqua Park Lake Dan and Lake Frances Preserve Lake Tarpon Lake Tarpon Canal Lansbrook Park Mobbly Bayou Wilderness Preserve North […]

over the years since i first posted my little planet timelapses online, i’ve received a number of inquiries as to how they were made (as its a very unique look and i believe i was the first to create them).

the first step is to gather the series of equirectangular images.

back in 2009 when i first came across the little planet look and started shooting time-lapses of these, cameras that shot all the data in one image and at [...]

(it was quite a workout pulling it behind me while walking north against the 20+ mph wind! coming back south was a lot nicer as it could pull me a little)

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

take two:

[a.k.a. life on the road]

take one: take two:

my sister and I went to Fort De Soto for my birthday..

the forecasted 11 mph winds helped the kite lift (with a little bit of help) as I let out the full 1000 feet of line.. I estimate the maximum camera altitude to be near 800 feet above ground. Looking closely at the still shots, I can make out a little bit of the Gulf of Mexico! (most likely the Sutherland Bayou and Smith Bayou – a good 6 or 7 miles by air from the kite)

hmm, looks like winds approaching 20 mph are too much to have the extension pole on the tall stand fully extended to 25 feet (without additional support from bracing, sand bags, or stakes)… [the part after it fell over is from 15 feet high]

my sister and I went to John Chestnut Park to fly kites.. the old kite we found sitting in the garage didn’t work too well, though I was able to get some nice shots over the trees with my levitation delta kite.. it’s amazing to look at the world from new perspectives. from above, the trees coming out of the earth start to look like they are all one large living organism. [the tops of the trees look like like […]

looks like either the timer needs a little work or i’ll have to shoot more frames so it rotates a little smoother

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

here’s a shorter version of the december 2015 time-lapse video i posted the other day..

i was asked to write about how this was made so i will explore some of it below. i did write a bit about the technique and idea the other day when i posted the long version of the time-lapse. you can check the film and writing out at:

most of the shots in both films were created with either the ricoh theta m15 [...]

(some of these weren’t flown to be used in a video, but i’ve included them anyway) locations include: Anderson Park Aripeka Sandhills Preserve Bayside Bridge Belleview Biltmore Golf Club Brooker Creek Preserve Clearwater Beach Clearwater Memorial Causeway Courtney Campbell Causeway Bridge Crystal Beach Dunedin Causeway Florida State Fairgrounds Joe DiMaggio Sports Complex John Chestnut Senior Park Lake Maggiore Lake Tarpon Canal Marsh Pointe Mobbly Beach Park Philippe Park Pine Island Beach Park Pop Stansell Park R.E. Olds Park Sand Key […]

i put this playlist together yesterday [2015.05.18] though will likely update it as i create more. the individual time-lapse videos are in chronological order by the date shot, starting with the first ones i made back in early 2009 [shortly after i first discovered the little planet look, figured out how to do the whole technique, and then naturally thought it’d be awesome to do a time-lapse video with this technique as no one had done so yet]

this technique has gotten tremendously easier since i got a ricoh theta camera last year. it no longer takes many days just to stitch and process the images, nor the need to carry many pounds of heavy equipment that has to be precisely aligned [which also required a large, heavy case to be carried in and a heavy duty tripod to be mounted on]. now, a small camera that fits in my pocket, my iPhone, and something to mount the camera on [which can also fit in my pocket] is all that’s needed, and the most difficult part of the image processing is done automatically! the only downfall is that the image quality is a bit less than using my custom rig, though it still yields good results and allows for shots that could not have been done with the other gear, such as the aerial shot where the camera was hanging from the kite line as i walked for miles on the beach [or a driving shot that i have yet to process, which reminds me there are also a few other 360×180 little planet time-lapses i’ve shot that i have not yet created as of the time i’m writing this].

due to the way the youtube embed works with playlists that have different aspect ratio videos, some clips may be cropped a little bit. use this link to see the entire playlist directly on youtube: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYlEKn8xkNmW3bOSwai0v6bu3cFPmaK23

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[note to self: bring paper towels and clean the window next time as the suction cup mount holding the camera kept falling down every 3 minutes!]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

first take: take two:

almost gave up trying to launch the kite and decided to try one more time.. it got up fairly quickly after that and then was pulling pretty hard and a little work to get back down!

was going to fly high with the 1000 feet of line I just got, though the forecasted 7 mph winds were barely lifting the kite..

trying out the gopro chest mount on a bike ride..

a second successful flight with the camera.. [battery wasn’t charged so this one’s short, and the wind was pulling really hard so i only let out somewhere around half the line i’d guess — on the time-lapse yesterday, i let out the whole 500 feet of line minus what i needed to anchor it down]

[in california]

[in california]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

(using a real camera would’ve helped this look much better!)

here are the details (and order) of the cameras and exposure settings used for the star-lapse shots in this video:

2014.10.25 Crystal Beach
– Canon 5D with Sigma 12-24mm Lens, 30 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 3200, zoom at 12mm
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800

2014.10.27 R.E. Olds Park, Oldsmar
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 5 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800
(followed by walking + driving at same 5 second exposure)

2014.11.02 Crystal Beach
– Canon 5D with Sigma 12-24mm Lens, 30 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 3200, zoom at 12mm
– Sony NEX-5N with Sony 16mm Pancake Lens with VCL-ECU1 Ultra Wide 0.75x Converter, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 1600
– Canon 5D with Sigma 8mm Circular Fisheye Lens, 30 sec @ f/3.5, ISO 3200
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800

2014.11.03 Indian Rocks Beach
– Canon 5D with Sigma 12-24mm Lens, 30 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 3200, zoom at 12mm
– Canon 5D with Sigma 12-24mm Lens, 30 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 1600, zoom at 12mm
– Canon 5D with Sigma 8mm Circular Fisheye Lens, 30 sec @ f/3.5, ISO 1600
– Sony NEX-5N with Sony 16mm Pancake Lens with VCL-ECU1 Ultra Wide 0.75x Converter, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800

2014.11.04 Trinity (car on unfinished street)
– Canon 5D with Sigma 12-24mm Lens, 30 sec @ f/4.5, ISO 1600, zoom at 12mm
– Canon 5D with Sigma 8mm Circular Fisheye Lens, 30 sec @ f/3.5, ISO 1600
– Sony NEX-5N with Sony 16mm Pancake Lens with VCL-ECU1 Ultra Wide 0.75x Converter, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 400
– GoPro Hero4 Silver, 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800

2014.11.07 Crystal Beach
– Canon 5D with Canon 35/2 Lens, 30 sec @ f/2, ISO 800
– Canon 5D with Canon 35/2 Lens, 30 sec @ f/2, ISO 400
– Sony NEX-5N with Nikon 20/2.8 Lens (via LensBaby Tilt Transformer adapter), 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 1600
– Sony NEX-5N with Nikon 20/2.8 Lens (via LensBaby Tilt Transformer adapter), 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 800

2014.11.09 Crystal Beach
– Canon 5D with Canon 35/2 Lens, 30 sec @ f/2, ISO 1600
– Sony NEX-5N with Nikon 20/2.8 Lens (via LensBaby Tilt Transformer adapter), 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 3200

2014.11.10 Clearwater Beach
– Canon 5D with Canon 35/2 Lens, 30 sec @ f/2, ISO 800
– Sony NEX-5N with Nikon 20/2.8 Lens (via LensBaby Tilt Transformer adapter), 30 sec @ f/2.8, ISO 1600

i shot these over a year and a half ago so i don’t remember all the exact details.. (and i didn’t include details above for all of the few frames / quick shots between the longer starlapse shots.. this isn’t meant to be the most scientific test as i have made some quick adjustments to the images in lightroom too) i think i first started these tests to explore how well the new gopro camera would perform with its nightlapse mode compared to my then current setup for ultra-wide angle night shots with the 12-24mm lens. (all the gopro shots have been ‘defished’ in lightroom as this is how i would process them and this could possibly replace the 12-24mm setup) i think i was thinking that when i travel, it’d be neat to be able to shoot everything with the gopro camera rather than have to bring multiple camera systems (especially as the gopro can be charged and run off of usb power, and the life on the road videos i was working on back then were taking a very long time to edit having been shot with multiple cameras). then i probably became curious as to how the 5d setup would compare to the nex-5n for night shots, and also tried the 5d with the 8mm lens as depending on how that looked, i could sell the 12-24mm and begin to reduce the amount of gear i had if i were to defish the circular fisheye image (which i didn’t do in this video) and effectively use that as an ultra-wide angle lens. after doing these tests, i decided to compare the 35/2 and the 20/2.8 with both cameras as these would give a similar field of view with the full frame vs cropped aps-c size sensor.

a few weeks later, after seeing that i don’t necessarily need all of this gear that i had to make certain shots, i sold most of my canon gear except i kept one 5d body with the 8mm lens as i could still use this with a custom rig i had to create little planet images and time-lapses (i had the first ricoh theta camera back then though the quality was nowhere near what my custom setup could do and it couldn’t shoot at night). nearly a year later, toward the end of the summer of 2015, i ended up selling the whole 360 degree rig, including the camera, lens, motor, custom head, and tripod mounting components. it was nice to get rid of so much extra weight that was just sitting here taking up space. i can’t remember the last time i had used the rig and shot something before that. the last time i used the 8mm was to shoot these tests and i only used the 5d one other time after the tests to shoot a few pinhole images. shortly after selling the gear for the 360 degree rig, ricoh announced the latest theta s camera that would be able to shoot night shots. gotta love divine guidance! :) perfect timing on selling the gear. the theta s camera is so, so much simpler to use than my old setup. my old setup could’ve gotten some more detail but the tradeoff for being able to use a camera that weighs next to nothing and fits in my pocket versus having to lug around many pounds of gear plus large and heavy tripods or stands to mount it is definitely worth it. i can shoot so many more images having less gear to carry, and i can go much further with less and mount a smaller camera in many more unique places. to be able to shoot a single elevated 360×180 degree image, i’d be looking at 45-50 lbs of gear i’d have to carry with the old rig compared to less than 2 lbs with the new setup (and i can hold the new pole i use above my head for a higher vantage point than the large light stand i used to lug around). simplify your gear. (and your life) it takes away the burden so you can focus your time and energy on creating images and embracing the moment rather than carrying and keeping track of things.

i’m very grateful that i was able to recover the quadcopter with my iphone on it.. i recall on one of the shots where i had it flying out over the middle of the lake, i couldn’t tell which way it was pointing as i had spun it around to get different views (and it was a tiny dot in the sky), and the return to home emergency button didn’t seem to be responding. i tried different modes to try to bring it back to me though i didn’t know if it had gotten the proper gps lock and compass direction or whatnot.. the flight had gone longer than other ones and i didn’t know how much longer the battery would keep it in the sky so was a bit concerned. i think i had to ask for divine grace to help me at that point and surrender to the possibility that i might lose it in the water. shortly after that, i don’t remember exactly what i tried (as this shot was over a year and half ago), though i somehow managed to fly it back. i was so glad to see that it appeared to be getting bigger and that i was able to tell which direction it was heading as i guided it towards me. as it kept getting closer, i kept hoping the battery would last long enough to get it back over the dock or close enough nearby as i saw the red light blinking indicating it was just about out of power. another time after this at honeymoon island, i don’t know if it was in this series of shots or some other time, i had an issue where it wasn’t responding and i think it was windy and i didn’t know if i was going to get it back. i’m really grateful i’ve always somehow managed to fly it safely back (and was able to retrieve it from a tree the one time i lost sight of it and it crashed way up high in a 40+ ft tall tree).

it’d be much easier to do the aerial shots with a first person live view of what the camera is seeing or with a preprogrammed fly by gps waypoint system that modern quadcopters have.. not having either, i had to guess composition + direction and try to keep track of the tiny white dot in the sky and trust it’d come back :)

some locations include:

Crystal Beach
Dunedin Causeway
Fred Howard Park
Honeymoon Island State Park
Wall Springs Park

here’s my latest masterpiece… err, well, really more of an experimental, proof of concept piece than a so-called “masterpiece”. there are some places where this could be better and i could continue to refine this though i’ve decided to leave it as it is. technically, there are a few errors due to buggy software [adobe photoshop, ffmpeg, and quicktime player pro all seemed unable to support the size of this project.. it was 18361 still images with the final tiff files taking over a terabyte of space before rendering the 4k uhd 2160p video], colors could be improved, the time-lapse film/movie/video could be edited down to something shorter, some of the little planets could be centered better, etc, etc, though part of the concept behind all of my work is to expand perspectives [and after working on putting this together for weeks, i’m finally calling it done, at least for now]. so many of us seek perfection, especially technical perfection in the photographic, or lens-based arts, and yes very beautiful works can be created with enough effort, though this same quest for perfection can drive one insane and keep pushing one further into the mind, and the mind’s desire/need for perfection (or need for more/better/newer/faster/etc). the underlying message in my work is to let go of one’s own self-limitations. let go of what no longer serves you. expand your mind, your viewpoint, your self, to new limits. when letting go of the limitations of the mind, one will discover a whole new reality in this experience called life. one will discover a deep sense of peace amidst the chaos. life truly happens outside of the mind and its attachments/desires. step outside of yourself. expand your way of seeing the world, your self, others, and life to a new level. there is beauty everywhere, we just need to learn to see it. and it’s done by letting go rather than struggling, striving, and yearning for more and more. when letting go, inspiration easily comes to you. in this place of silence, from a deeper place of silence, ideas and feelings emerge.

just like the idea for this. i don’t recall exactly where it all started, though many years ago when i first created little planet time-lapses (which, at the time, had never been done before), i thought taking it to the next level.. it’d be neat to see them in motion — where the camera actually moves physical positions, not just virtually altering the perspective of the little planet time-lapse video as i had done. i shot at least a couple with my old rig years ago (that i never completed), and now with newer technology, a year ago i was able to create an aerial 360×180 degree little planet time-lapse in motion by hanging a ricoh theta camera off of a kite and walking for miles with it at honeymoon island. back in 2014, i had shot little planets with the ricoh theta suction cup mounted to the moonroof of a car, or holding it up on a monopod out the window while driving (at very low speeds). however in most of these shots, the car took up too much of the frame. i knew that elevating the camera higher would make the car smaller in the frame/planet though didn’t have a safe means to do so. somehow the idea came to me to get a short extension to make the camera sit higher above the suction cup [it’s funny how this happens as i don’t recall exactly what i was looking for, though inspiration, or divine guidance sometimes, takes us on these long tangents and you seemingly ‘randomly’ stumble upon something that triggers something else and then an idea comes which leads to another, etc, etc, and you end up creating what you’re creating]. anyhow, that first attempt still didn’t give me what i was looking for so i ended up researching and creating the rig that let me do the shots where it looks like you’re looking straight down on the car from a bird’s eye view as its driving on the little planet. there were a number of unknowns in doing so as this is something that i don’t think has ever been done before. [it’s funny as this is where the ego/mind would want to shout out that it was the first one to think of or create something new, unique, or to a further extreme/record, though there’s really a higher and more important message here] i’ve never seen this specific look done nor heard of anyone mounting a camera so high above a moving car (except with a large custom fabricated system like on the google maps car that’s likely quite expensive). sometimes you’ve got to just trust where life is taking you. my car is still pretty new and i didn’t want any part of the rig to come undone while driving and cause damage, though by learning to listen to and trust one’s intuition or inspiration (and perhaps balanced with a bit of logic and analysis in research and development), one can invent new things and take one’s art to a new level. when i was determining what gear i was getting to create the car rig, the idea came to me of using the components in a different manner to get the shots where you see the front of the car (from a lower angle) driving on the little planet. [and the idea of the car driving around the planet came to me a long time ago.. though at the time i would’ve had to shoot it as a time-lapse (and either push the car or drive and stop for one frame of the shot every 5 seconds) before getting the camera that was able to shoot it as a video now. i’m grateful for technology continuing to expand and make creating images with specific looks much simpler]

things don’t have to be so complex either. start small, or work in small increments, and you can do something big. with the car rig shots, i drove quite slow during the first shots (both to make sure the rig held up before incrementally driving a little faster with it, and to have more shots in the time-lapse as the minimum interval timer setting available on the camera was not ideal). a lot of this is common sense and one who has done something similar before will see this as a simple, effective, logical way to approach creating something, though i realize, and have seen, that not everyone thinks of this sort of technical approach when creating something or trying something new. it really seems to be about a balance between feeling and thinking, between inspiration and logic, just like photography is a balance between science and art — one could get by with either approach, though when combining both, one can create (and live) in new ways.

this balance, or way of understanding both/all sides, is part of the whole underlying message of expanding perspectives. by being able to see, understand, and feel one way or the other, one can remove limitations in one’s life. spiritually, or philosophically (or whatever you want to call it) looking at this, it’s more of a non-dualistic approach. as we learn to transcend the limitations of duality, we embrace oneness. in oneness, we see that everything is connected and there is no right or wrong, no good or bad, and no separation. everything is part of the whole, and needs to exist in order for us to have this experience we call life. without up we cannot know what down is. without good or something we desire, we cannot know what bad or something we resist is. these dualistic perspectives give us the ability to experience life from a single viewpoint or perspective of separation, though as we learn to understand the whole, and see everything/everyone as connected and somehow related to everything/everyone else, new doors of perception will open to us. our current understanding through a vantage point of duality, is caused by existing and perceiving through the limitations of the mind. as we awaken and transcend the limitations of the mind, we begin to see the world as it is — before awakening, when perceiving through the mind, we are seeing a filtered world — we are not seeing it as it is — our viewpoint is clouded by programming/conditioning/judgment that we have been taught since we entered this world. we are told this is where we begin and this is where we end — anything outside of this defined endpoint is not us or ours, and anything within is us or ours. separation and conditioning is taught. the separate self, the ego, is a learned concept. yes, it is part of our current human experience, though it is also the root cause of all suffering. when we learn to see that we are all one, our lives will heal. we’ll also begin to see that there is no past or future.. these are merely concepts the separate mind has been creating. some concepts can serve us in various ways though many limit us. as we realize none of what we thought was real actually is real, we can much more easily let go of any attachment and suffering. we’ll find a place of bliss and peace when we can live fully in the present moment, in the now, and let go of thinking things need to be a certain way or cravings for what we don’t have or resistance of life circumstances we are experiencing but prefer not to. fully embrace the present moment. let go of anything that is not here and now. it is not real. your thoughts of the future, past, desires, resistances, etc, etc are only preventing you from fully living today, here and now. “carpe diem” seize the day, today and every day. do not dwell upon what is not. yes, you can vision, create, and manifest your future, though you must also let go, and surrender, to the present moment of where you are now in order for the creation to manifest. if there are any hinderances in thoughts, feelings, etc, etc preventing you from experiencing that which you desire, you will be taken through those so you may fully experience and release them and create the space for what you do desire to manifest and unfold simply in your life. the more we let go, surrender, and experience, the simpler this whole process becomes. the more we let go, the simpler life becomes. and the more we let go, the simpler it becomes to perceive and understand and fully know who we truly are (and all of the seemingly magical or mystical perceptions and understandings that come with this).

life is beautiful. live it fully. today. every day. here and now. let go. embrace. live.

step outside of yourself. awaken. become aware. understand by perceiving [what is]. grow. expand. be.

 

here are some of the locations these were shot at (all in Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties, Florida):

Brooker Creek Nature Preserve
Canal Park
Countryside
Crystal Beach
Davis Islands
Duke Energy Trail
Dunedin Causeway
East Lake
Ed Radice Sports Complex
Fred Howard Park
Honeymoon Island
John Chestnut Park
Keystone
Lake Chautauqua Park
Lake Dan and Lake Frances Nature Preserves
Lansbrook Golf Course
Odessa
Oldsmar
Palm Harbor
Philippe Park
Safety Harbor
Selmon Expressway

(some of these weren’t flown to be used in a video, but here they are anyway)

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

[a.k.a. life on the road]

take two, a little quicker:

[a 1732.6 mile journey]

shortly after a successful launch of the camera, the line got stuck in the winder [as it was loose] on the way out … and i almost couldn’t pull the line down enough to untangle it as it was pulling pretty hard!

this took a little longer to launch and after the first flight i saw the camera was off when it landed, so had to relaunch to create the time-lapse movie, though I had another successful flight with 1000 feet of line.. I estimate the maximum altitude was close to 900 feet above ground a few times when the winds lifted the kite higher.. you can see Honeymoon Island and Caladesi Island in the distance, and hints of the Bayside Bridge […]

a view from the camera 25 feet in the air.. funny the attention it draws.. looks like I’ll have to arrive early so I can level the stand better next time! [it was a little windy hence the jerkiness in the rotation, though it does give an interesting effect.. note the camera strap near the beginning!]  

 

a success! looks like little to no real damage was sustained last week.. saw lightning developing in that big cloud.. here’s my first use of the gopro suction cup mount on the ride back trying to catch some bolts in the shot [though only getting a little intra-cloud lightning]

Perseverance. If at first you don’t succeed, you try again. [and again, and again, and again, and as many times as you must — if need be] Challenges, lessons, doubts, secondaries can arise. Embrace them, for they are merely a part of the journey. Sometimes they make for a much more intersting story! :) Keep on going, and you will get to where you want to be.

Here’s my first successful flight in kite aerial photography. Yes, the camera angle is a little off as the picavet wasn’t hanging properly, yet I consider it a success. I like the shot below [one random one out of the 2400+ as I was looking for a few samples to edit the colors with] — and I didn’t expect the truck/camper to be in the shot at all! Expect the unexpected, and embrace what you do discover! Life is brilliant that way! It truly is amazing! Let life shine brightly and you’ll enjoy it that much more!

It’s funny, sometimes you [almost] have to forget where you’re going in order to get there! My friend Saren called last night [I type this the morning after the flight as the time-lapse files are still processing] unexpectedly and we both [seem to have] had experiences of that happening recently! It becomes part of your every day experience and it’s fun to watch!