Stop Motion Photography has been around for a long time. It obviously isn’t as popular as it once was but it remains interesting and entertaining. It’s a photography technique that isn’t going away and that is enjoyed by young and old alike.
Even if you don’t know what stop motion photography is, there is a good chance that you have already viewed a stop motion video without even knowing.
It’s never been easier to create stop motion videos. Read on to find out how to design and create your own stop motion photography videos with your smartphone.
What Is Stop Motion Photography
Stop motion photography is a series of images that are taken in a sequence that are then combined to create a choppy-type video animation. The videos produced do take some time to plan and create but the technique is simple to learn and the possibilities are limitless.
How To Create Your Own Stop Motion Video
The keys to successful stop motion videos are a good story and consistency. The lighting, exposure, and camera remain constant and still while the elements move in short movements during the shoot.
Typically a normal video has approximately 24 frames per second, so lighting changes aren’t visible to the eye. During a stop motion photography shoot, the elements are moved for every photo taken. If there is a change in lighting or exposure in between the shots, the video will look inconsistent.
First thing is to think of a story. Find elements to create a story that you want to tell with your short video. It can be anything from action figures, food items, toys, or anything that you feel you can animate and that will create an interesting story.
Next is to figure out how long you want your video to be. Typically 10 to 15 frames per second is a good starting point to creating stop motion videos that flow nicely. The video will be more fluid with more frames per second.
Let’s say, for example, you want your video to be 30 seconds long you will need approximately 300 photos (at 10 frames per second).
Choose a location with consistent light that will not change during your photoshoot. Set your camera so that it doesn’t move and snap the photos while you move the elements slowly step-by-step in the frame.
All the still photos are then combined in a sequence to create your story.
What You Will Need
Most smartphones can create stop motion videos. Make sure you have enough space to allocate the hundreds of photos that you will take.
With the creation of stop motion photography apps, it’s never been easier to create pro-looking stop motion videos.
- Stop Motion Studio (iOS) Stop Motion Studio (Android)
- Stop Motion Maker (Android)
- iMotion (iOS)
- PicPac (Android)
You can use home lighitng or any other steady light source.
Choose objects that will create a story and an interesting visual effect.
Your phone has to remain absolutely still while you are taking the photos. A tripod is the best way to secure your phone.
A good way to guarantee that your phone doesn’t move at all during your photoshoot is to use a remote shutter release. This way you don’t have to touch your phone to take the photos, therefore minimizing the chances of your phone moving.
Extra Tips & Tricks to Create Great Stop Motion Videos
- Make sure your phone is fully charged. This project will take quite a bit of time and you don’t want your phone to die before you finish your photoshoot.
- Experiment with different light settings until you get the look that you want.
- Avoid shooting near windows where shadows will move with passing time, creating inconsistency in your animation.
- Make sure that your own shadow and your hands are not in the photos.
- Delete some shots from the compiled images if you notice anything irregular.
- Add sound to your video to add emotion.
Stop Motion Videos
Watch a series of fun stop motion videos here created by one of the leading professional stop motion animators. Take time to watch some other of his videos, this guy is super creative! He even offers courses and teaches the stop motion technique online.
Have Fun Animating
One thing that 2020 gave us is time to learn new things. As more of us became confined to our homes we had to become creative and adapt to our new lifestyles.
Many took to learning new skills and hobbies. Stop motion photography is a perfect in-home project that you can do alone or with your kids. You have everything you need right in your own home to create your own amazing animations.
Have you ever created stop motion videos? Come share your thoughts and your experience with our community on our Facebook page Shoot Like a Pro With Your Phone.