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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Stop Motion Animation
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11/20/2004 01:41:46 PM · #1
I am a student, using my father's dp account, and i would like a few tips about stop-motion animation for a school project. It would help, and further, my project very much if you guys could give me a few pointers, especially about macros, lighting, editing, and maybe some things that I haven't thought about yet.
dirtkahuna's son
11/20/2004 02:20:11 PM · #2
If you are using a digital camera to capture multiple frames that you would then composite together to form an animation ... then I have some suggestions.

1) Use manual camera settings and lock f stop and shutter speed. This will give you consistent exposure from one frame to the next.
2) Shoot in a light controlled room so the light doesn't change from one photo to the next.
3) Shoot with natural light (i.e. turn the flash off).
4) Use a tripod and lock the position of the camera down hard, so it won't move.
5) Now ... animate the subject through subsequent photos each with the subject moved slightly.
6) Shoot lo-res photos until you get the hang of it. It will save you a ton of time. You can reshoot hi-res later after you've mastered the basics.
7) Story-board your animation so you know what you'll be doing and can stay on task.

I am sure this will sound limiting, but it is very very hard to control camera movement, zoom changes, and exposure changes from frame to frame and have the composited animation come out okay. When you have mastered the restrictions above, you can begin adjusting the other stuff.

What software will you use to composite the animation? It can be done in Flash. In Premiere. In Bryce, believe it or not. And in lots of other software packages. Make sure you can import multiple photos each to its own unique frame. This may involve naming the images in a precise way (e.g. annimation-001.jpg, animation-002.jpg and so on). It will depend on the software.

Probably more than you wanted to know. Sorry if I rambled.

Edit: Typos!

Message edited by author 2004-11-20 14:22:10.
11/20/2004 02:34:19 PM · #3
8) Set a manual whitebalance

11/20/2004 02:47:31 PM · #4
Hey there, I love stop motion and I used to do a lot back when I had more free time. "Digital Quixote" gave some excellent tips but I can add a few.

-Macromedia flash works great because you can add animated elements and control key frame rate
-The more individual pictures you take between movements the better they look
-Make sure the thing you are animating is stable enough to not fall over between movements

This process is time consuming but rewarding! To view some of my older stop-motion animations use the following links below. (This will take you to Newgrounds- this is my only host for these. Some may find other parts of the website offensive!


I hope this helps!

-Joey Lawrence
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