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4.3 Photographing in Aperture Mode

There are some instances in which you'll want to shoot a long-duration time lapse video where light changes over time, such as the sunset. After completing this lesson, you'll know how to utilize the aperture priority (AV) mode on your camera to do just this.

4.3 Photographing in Aperture Mode

We already know that shooting manual will give us a more consistent sequence when shooting short durations, but what about when we're shooting longer durations? What if I wanted to shoot a time-lapse that lasted for over an hour, for example, the sunset? When the light in our scene is likely to change, we should consider automatic features to compensate and prevent our scene from becoming over or underexposed. We have a few options, such as Auto ISO, Auto Aperture, but in most cases, allowing the camera to automatically adjust the shutter speed will yield the best results. Cuz we do not want the focal depth to shift or the Auto ISO that will give us undesired artifacts and noise. Choosing the automatic shutter speed is the lesser evil. We need to understand though that using any automatic features will probably introduce flickering and will definitely make us more work in post-production. The good news is that the flickering can be resolved, and I'm going to demonstrate a method for fixing the issue in a later video. The benefit, though, from having the shutter speed automatically adjust means that the depth of field and the ISO value stay fixed. If our scene suddenly becomes dark, the shutter speed will change, and the camera will expose for longer. If the scene suddenly becomes bright, the camera will expose for a shorter time. Basically the shutter speed will try to compensate and keep the exposure balanced regardless of wherever the lighting changes. This is very useful if you're shooting something like a sunset or a sunrise. The downside, however, or what we need to be aware of, is how that's going to affect the motion. We know with a shorter exposure time, motion can look choppy. With a longer exposure time, motion blur is introduced, and things appear to be smoother. And also moving faster. We also need to be sure that our exposure times do not exceed our interval times. If your intervals are three seconds and the camera needs to expose for four seconds, it's going to begin skipping frames. What this means is that you end up with a much shorter sequence than expected. We need to be sure that our intervals are long enough for the camera to expose long enough. You've gone to all the hard work of lugging your equipment up a hillside and will be standing around in the cold for maybe an hour. Let's get this right. Let's set the camera to control the shutter speed automatically. First, I'm gonna put my camera into the aperture value mode. This mode allows me to decide the aperture. In this case, somewhere around F11 is gonna work fine for me. Once I've set the aperture, it's gonna remain fixed. I'll set the ISO to a low setting. I've got it set to 160. And next I'll decide the white balance. It's quite bright, so I'm gonna set it to sunshine. So when I begin my sequence, all my pre-determined values will stay fixed and the only thing that will change automatically is the shutter speed. I'll program the intervalometer and it's going to begin after 10 seconds, giving me plenty of time to place the intervalometer without shaking the tripod. I'll shoot with an interval of ten seconds, allowing plenty of time for my shots to expose and for my sequence to complete. I will shoot a sequence of 400 frames using sRaw. I'm also gonna shoot JPEGs along with them. If I use the time-lapse helper app, it's gonna tell me that I'm gonna be here for about one hour and seven minutes. I've already calculated how long it's gonna take for the sun to set. And where it will be in my shot, so now all I have to do is wait and see how it turns out. So I'm just gonna start that, put that there, should countdown from 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 1. [SOUND] Off it goes.

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