Internal and external capture – different specifications, same quality

Above: using rapid interval capture during a special launch event at Sotheby’s S2 Gallery, London.

Time-lapse photography is a valuable medium through which to record all manner of indoor and outdoor projects. While internal and external capture has different specifications, the same professional quality should be as standard.

Professional services produce high quality capture that is unmatched by ‘off-the-shelf’, DIY options. Keeping this consistent across every project – regardless of duration, location and subject – requires both skill and experience.

Internal capture

Indoor projects can mean anything from office & retail fit-outs, to interior construction works, to indoor events.

Capturing at regular intervals is valuable and functional for all these instances but is subject to reliable equipment and careful planning.

Internal developments often mean continual periods of activity, with relatively short periods of duration. Rapid interval capture is best suited for these conditions as emphasis is given to the smallest of details.

Visual changes that occur at a faster pace within a particular space are effortlessly picked up by a camera system capturing more frames per minute.

With any form of photography conducted indoors, artificial lighting can effect the quality of the image captured. Micro-management of the camera system, therefore, is paramount to maintaining consistent high quality throughout the duration of capture.

For projects in retail & office environments, specialist equipment or even a fixed position for the camera may not be necessary. A closer perspective of works on the ground can be achieved using ‘handheld’ and walkthrough methods, with settings easily adjusted by the engineer controlling the camera.

For projects in environments functioning at working capacity, on the other hand, it might be more suitable to provide capture from a fixed position and monitor the camera system remotely.

Remote time-lapse capture allows full monitoring of settings and rate of capture via secure wireless networks. Even if not on site, time-lapse providers can respond strategically to any changes as they happen, ensuring the best possible image throughout.

External capture

Capturing outdoors presents different challenges but the desired result is the same – a useful and engaging time-lapse video that can be used by clients as they see fit.

An obvious challenge when capturing external works is the weather. Controlling this is impossible but being prepared for all manner of conditions can be done.

Snow scene at Air Products Tees Valley
Above: snowy scenes capturing at Tees Valley.

A robust camera housing – the exterior casing which contains the camera software – protects against all elements, whether hot or cold, rain or shine.

Custom-built climate control settings ensure that the camera system remains fully operational during bouts of snow and plummeting temperatures. Remote capture is as crucial here as it is when working indoors, as these controls may be implemented as and when without having to physically handle the camera.

Also affixing camera systems to sturdy mounts can also keep a stable, sturdy view, even when contending with high-speed winds.

External projects are usually larger in scale than internal works, sometimes requiring multiple camera systems per job. This means careful planning and expert application to carry out the job safely as well as efficiently.

Optimum position for capturing large-scale works, whether construction, demolition, or other developments, is usually from above. Adhering to safety regulations – wearing specialist gear, such as helmets and harnesses, and only operating plant if fully trained – is a must when working at height.

Client and provider

Of course, some projects may consist of both internal and external work. In such cases, being prepared for all manner of capture is integral to providing a reliable service that will represent our clients to the optimum.

Every client is different and a professional service must be able to facilitate and maintain a dialogue throughout each phase of a project to honour their individuality.

Secure online networks benefit both internal and external workings in this way; collective access to an online viewer means that information about a project and its timeline is easily disseminated between client and provider. Such an interface is a key facet to any job, keeping everyone involved abreast of specifics.

An embedded viewer on the project/ client website is also an excellent way to keep the public informed throughout the duration of capture. Additionally, a completed time-lapse edit provides a concrete visual record that can be used for archival and promotional purposes beyond completion.

So whether internal and external capture (or both) is what you need, a leading time-lapse and site monitoring provider will be prepared for both. Experience is at the core of quality, ensures consistency regardless of environment.

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