So here’s my latest Raspberry Pi project. It uses the PiTFT Mini Kit, which is a 320×240 2.8″ TFT display and Touchscreen from Adafruit Industries that fits neatly onto my Raspberry Pi, to control a user interface to drive the back-end time-lapse script I showed you in a previous blog article.
This is a brief article about some behind-the-scenes stuff while I was making my latest time-lapse video, “Loop Head Peninsula”. There’s pictures of the time lapse rig in action, as well as a few words on the techniques I used, what I learned, etc.
Here’s a quick hack to make your night-time time-lapse sequences a bit more interesting. As a general rule of thumb, it’s always good to have a decent foreground in your landscape images. I believe that this also stands true for time-lapse photography, as well as night time time lapse photography. The problem is that it’s dark. Very dark. So, how about we artificially light the foreground during the shoot? But we’d have to have it lit for 2 or 3 hours?
Normally for shooting star fields, to get an interesting foreground we’d “light paint” the foreground with a torch, and through trial an error, we’d get an exposure that looked right. This doesn’t work for time-lapse, as it would be impossible to get consistent exposures for each frame. So, use a stable light source that will last the several hours that you need for the full time-lapse. Continue reading “Lighting Foregrounds in Night-Time Time-Lapses”
Sincerest Apologies for the downtime over the last week. My hosting provider was doing migration of a bunch of websites from one server to another, and in this process they were upgrading MYSQL, Apache, plus a whole host of other stuff it seems. Now while they did a staggered migration of the websites, it all went wrong once a significant number of websites were on the new host. Access times went through the roof, sometimes taking over 2 minutes to load a single page. Continue reading “Website Downtime”
(DISCLAIMER: Not meant as a security solution or a lesson in good dog behavior. It’s an experimental proof of concept to play with the application of embedded computing to solve particular use cases)
Sleep deprivation has been driving me mad recently. And it’s all down to a new member of the family (kind of), our new dog. She barks at night when she’s left out. She barks early in the morning when she’s left in. So once I recognized the patterns of her barking, I realized that all I needed was something that would let her out when she needed to go for a pee, usually around 6:30 in the morning. I could do this with a timer switch and a door strike, but where’s the fun in that.
I’ve recently had the need to solder some small components at home, but don’t have a microscope, or even a decent magnifying glass. But then I thought that I’d a rather expensive DSLR and a pretty good macro lens, along with some extension tubes (allows closer focussing). Now I know that the camera has a Live-View facility (it’s a Canon 5D Mark III), but would the display be output easily to a monitor? Well, in the box that came with the camera, I found a cable which had a composite connector and some kind of A/V connector for the camera, so I set it up as shown in the pictures, a switched on the camera. The menu was displayed on the monitor, as hoped. Once I’d enabled live view and adjusted the settings so the exposure was OK, I zoomed into the display, first x5 and then x10. Each time the live view display was replicated on the monitor.
Here’s how to add a 9-pin serial port to your Raspberry Pi, and it’ll only take you 10 mins. Well, maybe a couple of weeks to wait for the part to arrive from Hong Kong, but once it arrives, it’s only 10 minutes! 😉
Here’s the part you’ll need. It’s an RS232 to TTL converter module containing a MAX3232 chip. The MAX3232 is important, as the older MAX232 won’t handle the 3.3v levels of the Pi, whereas the Max3232 will. It comes with a 4-way cable for connecting the module to the GPIO of your Pi. If you search on eBay for “RS232 Serial Port To TTL Converter Module MAX3232” you should find several. The one I got cost me €3 with free shipping from Hong Kong.
Since the release of my new video “The Burren”, I’ve had a few queries as to where the locations are that I used in it. Well, here they are. The names are those used on the Ordinance Survey Ireland maps, which I’ve loaded on my phone using the ViewRanger app.