Here ia a short film I made to promote the 9th Sheffield Adventure Film Festival, Friday 4 to Sunday 6 April 2014
http://www.shaff.co.uk
More than 100 inspiring adventure sports films and speakers on 7 big screens
At the Showroom Cinema & Workstation (and Sheffield Hallam University)

I had a lot of fun making this video, teaching myself the techniques as I went.  I have done quite a bit of landscape light painting before, and have it was good to combine it with some timelapse.

The 'CLIMB' segment is a stop motion animation on a timelapse backdrop. I took photos with the shutter open for ten seconds and during each exposure my assistants Dan and Bill drew the stick men with their head torches.  Any movement of the headtorch is captured during the ten seconds, so you can really use the torch light as a paint brush.  As the assistants were so much dimmer than the torch or background they are not visible in the image. Then I'd have a five second break so that they could reposition for the next stick men.  The resulting images are played back at about ten frames per second to create the film.

  There was a moment filming it when Bill unintentionally slipped down the boulder. I immediately told him to stay down for a couple of frames so the stick man appears to fall and get up slowly too!

For the 'RUN' section I used a technique that I don't think has been used before on a landscape scale. This is called a cumulative light painting timelapse. Astro-photographers use software to combine lots of short exposures in order to create star trails. I applied this method to one of my light trail missions. I took about a thousand individual two second exposures of me running through the bracken like a lunatic. My partner was directing me by radio in order to get the letter shapes.
Afterwards, I used the software to 'add' the exposures together one by one, saving each step in between. I then played the steps in sequence at about 25 frames per second to create the timelapse film. The light trail is broken as there is a half second break between the exposures. If anyone has a good idea about how to avoid this then let me know.

I used a similar technique for the bike animation. The innovation here was to use to use Quality Street wrappers to tint the light. Mmmmm, delicious!

To create the rainbow letters for the Shaff animiation I taped LED torches to a stick. A five second exposure was enough to draw each letter. To turn the light 'off' between strokes, I rotated the stick towards me. It's quite hard to write in mirror writing with a big wand in the dark and cold, but my handwriting improved a lot compared to the bike one.  

This next paragraph is for the technical nerds only.
I stacked the cumulative light images using Starstax (freeware) in gap joining lighten mode. Most of the images were shot on a Canon 550D using a Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 lens (only the 'Run' segment needed f/1.8). Most exposures were done on ISO 400 to 3200. I compiled the timelapses using LRTimelapse 3 and Lightroom and I put the whole thing together with Adobe Premiere Elements.















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