Photography: Sequence Shots
Life is a series of events - one occasion leads to another occasion and in turn leads to yet another, forming a chain. Photography is about capturing the events in life and documenting them as still memories. Combine these two and the result: sequence shots - sequences of life, frozen in time and beautifully strung together through pictures.
Sequence photography is an art that exudes a vibe with each successive image and that amplifies in intensity to the final element. It can evoke an incalculable number of atmospheres. The unique and impressive characteristic of sequence shots is that unlike individual pictures that are independent and which speak for themselves, sequence pictures rely on one another to reveal a story, a motion, or a scenario. Each shot is dependent on the shot that precedes it in order to flow cohesively, similar to a train carriage that has to rely on the unit before it all the way to the driving cab to trudge the railways.
In my opinion, the fitting way to string sequence images together is by encasing them in negative film strip frames or in postage stamps' frames linked by perforated lines.
This hub's aim isn't to instruct the techniques of sequence photography as it is basically a logical step by step procedure; it is merely to highlight the common few forms of this art, and, in the process, to share some of my sequence pictures for my readers' viewing pleasure which I hope everyone would enjoy.
One of my favorite styles of sequence shots. It's interesting to take pictures of food in its ongoing course of being consumed, and this is how sequence shots in this category are mostly taken. Another option would be the process of food rotting, such as the growth of bacteria on a slice of bread.
Nature constantly evolves; that is what makes it alluring, easy, and suitable to take sequences of - it is always there, available to be photographed. Get creative - excellent subjects include approaching waves gaining momentum, ripples of water on a pond, accumulation of dewdrops on a leaf, sunflower heads turning in accordance to the sun's direction, decaying of an organism, and beneath, movement of clouds over a hill.
Probably the most fascinating type of sequence photography, growth sequences have always have people marveling at the transformation and maturity of a living thing over a period of time strung into a mega-fraction of a specific period. Very recommendable for editing into a video.
Photographing animals is always pleasurable, entertaining, and most of all, effortless. That is because there is not a need to have your subject in poise; animals naturally pose, though unconsciously. All there is to do is to have your camera's lenses focused on your subject, ready to click away; the opportunities for this sequence are countless. Shooting in burst mode is preferable and recommended as animals move around continuously. It will be easier then to capture their consecutive movements in split seconds.
One normally associates action sequences with vibrancy, and sports perhaps come into thought. But action does not necessarily have to be about the adrenaline force, it just has to be a chronological series of something done such as a couple taking a video in front of the Coliseum and then viewing it instantly on their video camera.
This style is fitting for a vacation travelogue, especially if it is about a road-trip on a RV. All the pictures can then be compiled into a single album to have the feeling of going through the entire trip again when flipping through the images. This sort of documentation would also assist in aiding the memory of any trivial details that have been forgotten about the journey, which would be bound to happen.
This kind of sequence is commonly taken from a moving automobile, but it can also be taken while on foot, such as strolling down an avenue and subsequently capturing the image ahead of you at short intervals with your camera held in the same position. Below is a short sample sequence of a gondola ride taken while cruising through the narrow waterways of Venice.
Time-lapsed sequence has a static element, either the subject or its setting. It focuses on the difference of a constituent that takes place over a specific period of time contrasting against a constituent that does not. Shown beneath are two wonderful examples: the day to night backdrop of the Brandenburg Gate and the flow of passersby on a street.
Process can be defined as a structure of building blocks leading to a final outcome, a finished product. It is documentation of a beginning to an end. A process sequence must always have a concluding element. Suitable scenarios: a cake baking, a building constructed, a candle burning, or as below, an origami crane's folding steps.
This sequence plays with intensity. A dramatic style that has the subject inching closer bit by bit.
This sequence has two varieties - a 180º viewpoint or a 360º viewpoint. Taken from consecutive angles, it is customarily used as a generalized model to depict the dimensions of an object.
First published on July 15, 2011