Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Blog 4 - How I made a time-lapse and made it into a WebM

This blog post is a little different, I will be detailing how I learnt how to film a time-lapse, learn about WebM’s and how to convert my time-lapse into a WebM. The reason why I chose to do WebM’s as my first self-initiated project was because of my instant interest in them. My knowledge of WebM’s were quite basic, I thought WebM’s were a video format (which I later learnt it really isn’t). WebM’s are the new kid on the block when it comes to video formats on the web. Because WebM’s are new, you don’t really see them on websites that much. You may come across them every once and a while, most commonly on image boards. After getting stuck in and searching the web for articles on WebM and the legal troubles they currently having, browser support and alternatives, I was determined to learn how to create one to use on my site.

Time-lapses were a different story. My knowledge of time-lapse was just from an audience member, nothing technical. I have always wanted to learn how to make one, now that I own my own equipment (camera, lenses and tripod etc. But what I didn’t know is that I needed a digital timer remote. Without this remote, filming a time-lapse with my camera wouldn’t have been possible. Because I have an older version of the Cannon (700D), I didn’t get the time-lapse feature that the newer models have. I got around this problem by going online and purchasing a cheap digital timer remote. After doing some research, most digital timer remotes pretty much operate the same; some paying extra for a branded remote was pointless.
The filming of the time-lapse was a little tricky. I wouldn’t call myself an expert with my camera, I’m still learning so I had to look online for tips on how to actually film a time-lapse. The process was quite simple; all I needed to do was with my new timer remote, set the remote to take an image at the time I set it. Because I was filming for a few hours, I set my camera to take a picture every 10 seconds for roughly 6 hours. After fearing the weather turning bad and raining, I produced a very nicely made time-lapse of clouds forming. I will add a link to the raw footage bellow.

Finally it was time to export my video as a WebM. I first went into this thinking it would be much harder than it actually was. After searching online for the best way to convert MP4 into WebM, the response was to use a converter. The problem I found was to find a converter that I could export the WebM at an exact resolution. After some searching I found a WebM converter called ‘WebMBro’ that could do the job. This converter was created for beginners, so this was perfect for me. It was then as simple as choosing the input (the raw MP4 video file), choosing the resolution and convert.

Finally embedding the WebM into my website was very simple; I just coded the WebM like I would do an image with a simple image source code in HTML.

Here are a list of resources I used:

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