We’ve all seen startrails, they’re basically a series of semi-long exposures of the stars assembled into one image. The technique used is stacking. By stacking multiple images together, the differences in each image appear as one. For a long time stacking was the work of expensive editing software. I personally call that a composite image although some purists will argue. It’s quite obvious that we aren’t going to be making star trails with a title like “Traffic Pile-up”. However the technique is very similar to our week 52 challenge from December 2016. We’re just going to be presenting it in an incremental video instead of a single image.
The little video above is what I’m talking about, we’re going to be stacking traffic, although I used cars, the stereotypical definition of traffic pile-ups, you have creative freedom over the definition, allowing you to add your own personal touch to this process.
What I did is fairly simple :
- I setup my camera (RICOH THETA S) to do interval shooting of one picture every 10 seconds for 10 minutes.
- I stacked the first six images representing the first minute.
- I then added 6 more images that represent one additional minute of stacking.
- I continued adding increments of 6 images until I reached the total shooting time of ten minutes, producing ten images where traffic incrementally piled-up.
- I put together my ten images in a short video in the style of a time lapse.
I did this quickly in photoshop, but I wanted to bring this to the 2017 PhotChallenge in a way that everyone can participate on a budget whether you’re using state of the art camera gear or your smartphone camera.
I found a little piece of freeware designed for startrails that works on MAC, PC and Linux. It’s called StarStax and it does a wonderful job of stacking JPEG images into a single composite image. Here’s the link : https://www.markus-enzweiler.de/StarStaX/StarStaX.html#download
There’s even a Flickr group to inspire you : https://www.flickr.com/photos/stephaniesaccoccio/31637339573/in/pool-starstax/
To complete your challenge:
- Remember it has to be a TRAFFIC PILE-UP or a reasonable interpretation of…
- You final submission will be in the form of a time-lapse illustrating the gradual pile-up through composite images.
- You do not have to follow my timing, however it is an easy formula to follow.
The rules are pretty simple:
- Post one original photograph (Your Image) shot each week per theme posted on this blog to Google+, Facebook, or Flickr (or all three). Tag the photo #photochallenge and #photochallenge2017
- The shot should be a new shot you took for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
- Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2017 PhotoChallenge is fun and easy.