Dan Paluska

if you hold still for 30 seconds, you can capture the moment.

(UPDATE – six month compilation 1, six month compilation 2)

from the five borough tour

the staten island ferry

i carry a timelapse camera with me everyday. when it is turned on, you just need to hold still for 30 seconds and the moment will be captured. i find this to be a powerful concept. one photo every 30 seconds gives you about a 2 minute video at the end of the day. (default playback rate on movies is closer to 5-10fps rather than 30fps.)

the above shot was a posed/planned. i placed it on the ground and we just milled around in that spot for 30 seconds and then moved on. you might not notice it in the context of the movie playing at full speed but it’s a nice frame. it’s from the following movie:

first let me try to summarize a few thoughts i have.
– document more with less opinion.
– more automatic and less filtered by my opinion of what is “worthwhile”
– sped up linear visual representation of how long things take is more useful than writing “5 hours” in a spreadsheet?
– one button simplicity
– in public it is a short conversation starter, sort of like having a pet.
– reflection on process and sharing
– less worry about documentation because it’s always happening anyways.
– don’t want to spend too much time on it but a minute or three each day seems worthwhile.

a little bit more about why timelapse in general:

Its pretty difficult to say it all concisely but it has definitely been a pretty amazing thing to carry this little green garden timelapse camera around for the last month or so and film my local environment. There are lots of cameras that do this type of thing. Maybe you should go get one?

If you are a consumer electronics giant, please make more of these devices!! It would be nice to have some static ones situated in collaborative public spaces as well. Doodle on that coming soon.

if you want to see more about the project, please check out the links below. i’m still collecting my thoughts. i’ll follow up with some more soon.

Some bits and pieces to view:
Photos and Videos on flickr
Videos on youtube – http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=242146565C9B7AA9

a letter from brinno and some discussion about why i place the videos in the public domain:
yes please use my movies!

a few other timelapse videos scattered about on plebian design vimeo, electriclaserpeople, nice nice nice nice, and http://danpaluska.blip.tv.

see also discussion of one minute per day. this is most definitely in the same space as that project.

and one of our timelapse movies from absolut quartet taken with security spy and then post-processed(qt pro export to img sequence, reimport img sequence at 30fps) to fix playback framerate delay issue.


3 Comments so far
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Hi dan

Fantastic fun, with that little time lapse thingy… Can I ask you a question. Would this little thing be suitabe to set up to take a picture a day for one year of a building being built ??

Any advice really appreciated..


rob Lowery

Comment by rob


that should work but you might have to change the batteries once in a while… if you got a spare computer with a webcam you can also do it that way for a setup that isn’t going to move for a year.

Comment by danielpaluska

I’ve been researching the GardenWatchCam online for hours and you seem to be the only person doing anything interesting with it that I can find. Your videos are the only one’s I can find that show the capabilities of the cam. I knew someone must be doing something worthwhile with it and getting good quality as well. Most other videos I’ve seen with this cam seem to be compressed beyond recognition. Yours show what it is capable of. Thanks. I’m trying to document environmental problems caused by a structure near my home ( http://www.tomscreek.info ) and timelapse videos will be a valuable addition to our efforts, now that I see what this cam can actually do.

Comment by David Kaminsky

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