Wanting to add movement to your timelapses? Try making a hyperlapse with these techniques.
A hyperlapse is a type of timelapse that incorporates camera movement. Rather than locking the camera down, a user moves the entire system to create a dolly effect using a series of still images.
The hyperlapse is not nearly as popular as it was in the past few years. This isn’t because people grew tired of them, but rather they grew frustrated with how hard it was to make a good hyperlapse.
The technique was so popular that Instagram released its own standalone app – Hyperlapse. Social media feeds were quickly full of people driving through traffic; it was the most boring possible use of a hyperlapse. They failed to make use of the key aspect of making a quality hyperlapse — moving the camera.
Needless to say, the app’s popularity quickly faded into obscurity. That doesn’t mean that the hyperlapse technique is dead. In fact, there are still incredible pieces being made around the world. Here are a few examples from across the globe, and a tutorial to get you moving in the right direction.
Years before the term hyperlapse even existed, the technique was already being developed. In 1995, filmmaker Guy Roland shot the film Pacer. Using a Bolex 16mm camera, he walked the streets of Montreal painstakingly shooting footage frame by frame. The result was phenomenal.
One of the earliest known uses of the term hyperlapse came from a 2008 video titled Test Hyperlapse / Timelapse Paseo por Pontevedra from Fran Muradas. Muradas gave a walking tour of the city of Pontevedra in Spain.
This hyperlapse influenced many other city walks. In fact, hyperlapses became a standard shot in city promotional videos. Just like this popular video, Still Moving. It’s a walking tour of Victoria Park in London from Theo Tagholm.
The term gained popularity with the release of Berlin Hyper-Lapse from Shahab Gabriel Behzumi. Behzumi focused on featuring iconic landmarks like the Brandenburg Gate. Using a city’s landmark helped create an identity for the video. If you are shooting a hyperlapse, be sure to include some type of iconic feature in your film.
Berlin Hyper-Lapse influenced filmmakers all over the world to travel around their own cities. It spawned a whole series of walk-through films, like Time of Rio from MOOV. This hyperlapse also includes video footage throughout it as well.
To push the hyperlapse even further, other filmmakers began adding transitions. In this Portugal Hyperlapse, Kirill Neiezhmakov would morph the coast to transition between shots.
Hyperlapse videos can also include a lot of tilt-shift photography, like in This is Boston from Bodhi Films.
The most notorious feature most often used is zooming. Using zoom in a hyperlapse has pushed these videos in a whole new direction. It creates seemingly flawless transitions from great distances to an up close walk-through.
One of the best uses of zooms, and one of the best hyperlapses ever made, comes from Dubai Flow Motion from Rob Whitworth.
Whitworth is perhaps the most well-known hyperlapse filmmaker. He has created several stunning hyperlapses like This is Shanghai, Barcelona Go!, and Traffic in Frenetic HCMC, Vietnam. He teamed up with JT Singh to gain access to the reclusive capital of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Pyongyang.
Now that you’ve seen some of the best hyperlapses out there, are you ready to make your own? Here is a great tutorial from Eric Stemen. He will walk you through setting up your tripod to choosing and framing your targets.
Have you made any hyperlapses you want to share with us? Are you planning on shooting on soon? Let us know in the comments below.