London meet up films (including hilarious GoPro one) and my first attempt at using the BETA version of Kessler Crane Smartlapse

pic by TJ Jeffrey

I have done loads of meet ups, mostly across the pond, but FINALLY I did one in London yesterday and I hesitate to say it but I think it was the best yet. Certainly the biggest. We had at least 200 people there despite atrocious weather just before it started and we stayed shooting till dark then went for some grub, then I gave a lift to Victoria Station to some the more far flung people from Galway, Paris and Oxford via Haarlem!

I had a lovely time meeting everyone. Really sorry if I didn’t speak to everyone. I tried to!

Whilst there I did a number of test timelapses using the 1DmkiV, 17mm TS, my Vinten fibertec legs, Revoultion head,  and the amazing “Smartlapse” BETA software on the Oracle from Kessler Crane. The concept is simple, with the Oracle you can program any realtime move over the three memory presets. With it you can do anything you want, you have total control with the joystick over the 2 axis and then save them in memory to played back remotely without you touching the controller. This is great for video but the cool thing about “Smartlapse” is you can tell it to do that same move about a set period of time. The software I had is in BETA so all the bells and whistles were not there but it worked just great as you can see from the little video below. I mapped out the shot I wanted live then played it back over an hour or so for each shot. Varying the pan and tilt and the speed. Shame I had the last one in AV mode and not manual as the very bright advertising board kinda screwed it up… but its a lot of fun and is going to make timelapsing with both the Revolution head and my pocket dolly/ Cineslider a lot easier as I can put in speed changes which is going to be awesome. Kessler Crane will add it to the Oracle to a few weeks when they have perfected the software. These are far from perfect moves. My first time trying this…I am sure the moves will be a lot simpler for “real shot”…this was just seeing what it can do so the moves are a bit crazy but that is what experimenting is about, right?

The first shot I did by simply moving the camera 90 degrees on the head so instead of titling normally it made the camera spin on it’s axis. Very cool.

London Meet-up with Kessler Crane “Smartlapse” from Philip Bloom on Vimeo.

So don’t forget the competition for best film of the day. There is a vimeo group up. So add your film to it of the day only and you have a chance of winning a $500 Kessler Crane voucher for their shop! You have until Saturday to submit.

Here are some of the films made so far: Great stuff…very inventive

My journey to London meet up (Philip Bloom) from Filippo Chiesa on Vimeo.

Filmed on GoPro HD (great, cheap, little waterproof camera).

London Meet-up with Philip Bloom from James Miller on Vimeo.

The Philip Bloom london meet up Timelapse from VJ Cookie / Kevin K on Vimeo.

Shot this timelapse during The London Meet up at Piccadilly Circus London, 14 Augustus 2010.

I used Lightroom for the (minimal) colour correction.
Editing done on my good old white macbook with FCP.

The camera i used is an Canon EOS 550D with an Tokina 11 16 lens and an standard 18 55 lens for the tele shots.

The music is from Minus, from the free music archive.

Kevin Koekkoek.

The boom pole used for the excellent Gopro film
Home made viewfinders!
shooting 9x16
Taken by Samuel Ryan
Pic by Adam Webb
Pic by Adam Webb
Pic by Adam Webb
Pic by Adam Webb
Pic by Adam Webb
Pic by Adam Webb
"Does it shoot video?"

Changing focus mid timelapse

Pic by Samuel Ryan

Pic by Zainab Adam

Pic by Zainab Adam
Pic by Daniele Cuccia
Pic by Andrew Howe
Pic by Andrew Hower
Pic by Waggamama waitress for Ruben Lammerink
Pic by @rumblegum
Pic by @rumblegum
This cost 5 quid!


  1. Had a amazing evening, thank you ever so much philip for organising this.
    Was great to meet you, and looking forward to helping out on [critics]

  2. Wow, look at all of those HDSLR geeks! I never knew London was so nerdy. Okay, I’m jealous I couldn’t be there. Looks like it was loads of fun.

  3. Hoorah! saw myself in your timelapse! amazing! (ginger chap with the very blue check shirt at 1.09-1.11! Thanks- didnt speak to you, but I did to some interesting people!

  4. Glad the meet up was such a success!

    Just to let you know I have just watching the BBC’s secret Britain series where they visited Dungeness. After a few minutes the famous fishing boat FE180 that features in your timelapse film popped up.

    I felt like I spotted an old friend!

    ps Having experimented astral timelapse, I now realise it’s the realm of the hardcore insomniacs and I am glad to join the ranks. Here’s a short clip from one of the set ups I made…

    1. I wanted to go to this so badly I rang Philip to try to plant the idea that the next one should be in Malaga, Spain where I am – you know everyone, sea, sun, sand, mountains, good wine, the magic hour every day – never any rain… Spanish women in bikinis (not that that would influence anything obviously)- But hey, It’s not such a bad idea! Come on nerds, get over here – flights to Malaga are soooo cheap… Philip Bloom will say the word and everyone can follow and get a suntan to boot. Any thoughts on my brilliant idea?!

  5. Can tell you’ve been in the states Philip, at the dinner table you’re the only one with a deep sun tan! Looks like it was alot of fun.

  6. looks like real fun. can anybody please help me with this: I was wondering how the color correction was made of the two pictures by zainab adam. would really help a lot if anyone could point it out or give a quick hint. maybe zainab, if your read this. thank you.

  7. Bloody hell i wish i was there!!

    btw i know crime aint what it used to be in London but that seemed like a hot spot to rob people of some serious expensive kit. were you worried at all?

      1. I think we all actually watched each others stuff, everyone was fortunately really friendly.

        …and we liked the idea of stealing Philip’s rig… but decided it was a bad idea as we’d probably be caught on camera! 😉

      1. Yeah, there was no need for a Canon Salesman….they left their indelible mark on most everyone there haha.
        Looked like a cool meetup.

        The “Smartlapse” is pretty cool but it’s movement is a little robotic (because it’s a robot), if they smoothed the movement out it would look nicer.

  8. Looks like a great meet up – last time In the circus I found it hard to move due to some film premier – hope the public werent too pushy around all that gear!

    Vinten legs Hired ? Did you end up keeping that compass 20 head for your miller sticks ?? would love a review of one!

    did your gear all fit Okay under the waggamama table ? 😛

  9. Hey Phil. Looked like fun! If you ever do come by South Africa be sure to arrange a meetup here! You wont believe how everyone here shoots on HRSRLs.

  10. Whahaha, I’m very wondering what people passing by must have been thinking…
    Imagine the size of the ”toys of the boys” a little bigger, say motors, same place… wouldn’t even the camera freaks be suprised? 😛 (well, you see, size DOES matter! 😉 )

    Wasn’t it any problem to be there for so long with such a large gathering?

  11. Philip,

    When will Eric release that Smartlapse for the rest of us? Us non-famous types?

    What do you have to do to get the Smartlapse? Do you update yourself like a plug-in? Do you send the Oracle back for the update? Or, does one have to buy a whole new Oracle?

    Please advise.

    Awesome display on the meet and greet there, Philip.

    I’ll bet the Beatles didn’t have a better crowd and aren’t as famous as you! Betcha’!


      1. Thanks for the info Philip. Again, great stuff. Wish you’d do one in San Antonio, Texas like you did there. We love your stuff here too. If you have it, we will come…

        Stay cool.


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