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Handheld Hyperlapse II [17th of 52 Timelapse Project]

This week I decided to go extremely light with my shot – with just a camera 😉 I’m not a huge fan of handheld hyperlapses, because there are a few problems with this technique. Although it’s quicker to shoot and can be used in locations, where tripods are not allowed.

This is a shot from my 52 Timelapse Project. You can check out the details of the project or full list of the shots.

Check out my shot and then read a few tips, pros and cons of a handheld hyperlapse below 🙂

If you don’t know how to shoot a hyperlapse, start with my in depth tutorial: How to shoot hyperlapse [TUTORIAL]

Disadvantages

For me the biggest disadvantage of shooting a hyperlapse handheld is that I can’t use long exposure to blur cars and people in the shot. Of course razor sharp frames could be fixed in post, but it’s best to shoot it in camera 😉

The second disadvantage would depend on your shot, but for some hyperlapses the post production could be way more difficult. Another thing is that I had enough after about 100 pictures – Sigma 18-35 is pretty heavy and it’s not the best choice for a handheld hyperlpase 😉 So, it’s best to use a lightweight setup.

Advantages

You need just a camera, so you can shoot hyperlapses spontaneously during a journey 🙂 Taking a tripod everywhere you go can be tiring. The second advantage I mentioned earlier – there are locations, where you can’t use a tripod or just you don’t want to explain to a security guard what and why are you shooting. Definitely, a guy with a camera in hand, even if he walks funny, looks more like a tourist than someone with a tripod 😉 Usually, if you have a tripod they think you are a professional photographer and you need a permission.

Of course it’s best to get a permission on the location, but we are talking more about a travel videos etc, where you don’t plan your shots earlier 🙂

Tips on shooting

  • Don’t take your heaviest camera/lens setup 🙂 I mean, you can, but as I mentioned, I wanted to end my shot after about 100 shots. My hands started hurt quite fast…
  • Definitely, it’ll be better to use a viewfinder (no matter if optical or electronical) than a liveview. Puting your camera to your eye makes it more stable and lets you keep the camera at pretty much the same height during the shot.
  • Try to walk along some straight lines or smooth curves on the ground.
  • Just like in tripod hyperlapse – find a fixed point and try to be as accurate as possible in aiming 😉

Can we make it a little bit easier? Of course! Check out my handheld hyperlapse shot with a gimbal: Handheld Hyperlapse across 1km walk

Have you ever tried to shoot a handheld hyperlapse? How was the stabilization? Let me know in the comments and share your shots in Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/timelapse.hyperlapse/

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