Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone

Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone 1

Two months ago, I wrote about a way to create panoramic photos using the iPhone’s camera. This week, during a visit to our in-laws in Cumbria, I decided to try and push the iPhone again and see if I could capture some worthwhile images of the birds that feed outside the house. Rather than just taking one or two pictures, or trying to make a bird feeding panorama, I used FotoTimer v2.0 to take a series of sequential, time-lapse shots.

Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone 2

Since the iPhone’s lens and color performance is limited, I decided to do a little testing to optimize the color balance and focus before taking the pictures. Once I felt comfortable that the shots were going to be exposed well, I set the iPhone up close to the actual feeding stations, and had to figure out how to hold it in the same spot for minutes at a time. After a bit of head scratching, I opted to use a big rubber band and a six foot garden cane which was in an outbuilding. After pushing the cane into the ground at a suitable distance to the bird feeders, I tied the iPhone to it with the rubber band tie. This isn’t the best or safest way to mount an iPhone, I know, but there’s no tripod… I wonder if Apple would mind if someone made one called “iPhone tripod?”


Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone 3

Setting FotoTimer to take a picture every 15 seconds for 15 minutes, I then left it running.


Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone 4

The resulting pictures, when viewed on the iPhone as a “slideshow,” gave the images a time-lapse effect, and after importing them into iMovie I produced a short film of the bird life visiting the bird feeders. You can view the iPhone time-lapse movie here.


Time-Lapse Photographs and the iPhone 5

Once again the basic iPhone camera plus one of the many photo apps available does produce some reasonable results. Even if the new iPhone does get a better camera and video recording functionality, it’s nice that current iPhone and iPhone 3G users at least have something cool to play with whilst we wait for contracts to expire.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *