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Christmas Magic – a 4K timelapse

First of all, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year !

This whole timelapse project was actually the idea of my girlfriend.  I guess, in suggesting the project, she saw the perfect opportunity to visit a few Christmas markets. 😀  I’m usually not a big fan of Christmas but since I haven’t seen any other timelapse like it, I agreed it might be nice.  The main idea was to show typical Christmas markets in western Europe, focusing on people and light.

Locations

The timelapse shows five cities in Belgium (Brugge, Brussels), Germany (Monschau, Aachen) and the Netherlands (Leiden).  I mostly shot during the blue hour to highlight the contrast between the yellow light and the blue sky.  This is also a great way to avoid having a completely black sky, which can be boring and distracting.  Everything was shot during the three first weeks of December 2016.

Gear

For the timelapse, I mostly used my trusty Sony A7 and a 16-35mm F/4 lens.  For some shots, I needed to an even wider angle and in these cases I took the Samyang 14mm F/2.8.  I also used the Sony 28-70 to get closer shots.  In many places, I was able to attach my camera to fences using a Manfrotto clamp.  A clamp like this is a lot more discrete than a tripod and takes a lot less space.  It’s also a good way to avoid people bumping into your camera, especially during Christmas time when it’s really crowded.

I used the built-in Sony App as an intervallometer.  It’s a really useful app even though at times it’s slow and you have to pay ten bucks for it (come on Sony, it should be free…).  The good thing about the app is that it has a really nice feature that ramps the camera automatically by dragging the shutter up or down in response to the changing light.

grand place brugge at sunset

To add movement in some shots, I used the Slider Pro from Gear Slider Camera which is lightweight and quick to set-up.

slider pro at Brugge timelapse

Editing

I used Lightroom and LrTimelapse to edit the pictures and create the video.  I used Premiere Pro to create the final movie adding transition, movement and the music.

 

I hope you like it ! Don’t hesitate to ask questions on YouTube or in the comments section.

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