Time-lapse Talk with Smith Woosley

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Smith Woosley is a time-lapse photographer and engineering student in North Carolina. The video posted below is an example of his work, and it showcases some stunning views captured along the Blue Ridge Parkway. We caught up with Smith to find out more about the making of this video and to pick his brain about all things time-lapse.

Blue Ridge Mountains – North Carolina from Smith Woosley on Vimeo.

BRO: This video is great! How long did it take you to shoot it?

SMITH: Thanks! The photos were shot last Autumn over the course of long weekend getaway trip. In total, I stayed four nights in different locations around Western North Carolina and took a few hours to shoot some photos at each stop along the way.

BRO: Can you tell us the locations that you shot from for this video?

SMITH: The trip started with a day in Asheville, where I took the cityscapes. From there I drove south and set up camp at Lake Powhatan where I got the lake and pier shot. Next was Hot Springs, NC and the French Broad River. And last was a beautiful drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway to the top of Mount Mitchell.

BRO: Technically speaking, is time-lapse considered videography or is it photography?

SMITH: It’s definitely a video, but it’s a video made out of thousands of pictures. A time-lapse works by taking photos at regular intervals, then compiling all of the photos to play smoothly at a sped up pace. Each second of this video is thirty photos, and can be the result of anywhere between one to 45 minutes of photographing.

BRO: How long have you been shooting time-lapse photography?

SMITH: I’ve been playing with time-lapse photography since I got my first digital camera for my 18th birthday, so about eight years. One of the first accessories I got for that camera was a custom piece that I could use to hold down the shutter button and continuously take photos. I made a couple rudimentary films that way, but the issue then was my lack of knowledge on the editing side. It was only recently that I took the time to learn new software and different editing techniques to make more professional looking videos, hence why this is my first published timelapse film.

BRO: What is your favorite subject?

SMITH: Landscapes. Beautiful outdoor scenery with morphing clouds, flowing water, and spinning stars is aesthetically pleasing and gives the viewer a sense of how much the Earth changes over time. It surprises me how little we notice these changes in our day to day lives, and timelapse videos provide a way visualize it. Landscape photography is also a great incentive to get outdoors and travel the world.

BRO: What led you to time-lapse?

SMITH: I’ve had an interest in still photography for as long as I can remember, and I honestly can’t remember what led me to time-lapse. I probably just saw a time-lapse film online and decided to order that custom piece for my new camera and see what was possible. I’m glad I did.

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