Time-lapse can be used in many ways, but something that has been popular since its inception is tracking the progress of nature and growth. Time-lapse photography can be used to capture a visual record of a significant stretch of time, such as an entire pregnancy, and then distill the whole process into a few minutes. Incremental developments, that take months can with clever editing be compressed into striking short videos.
Capturing human pregnancy by using time-lapse
Numerous mums-to-be very effectively use time-lapse to chart the growth of their bumps for 9 months. Filming for just a few minutes daily, weekly or fortnightly – the process can be sped up and the video shorts or photographs edited to create a memorable time-lapse of the entire pregnancy.
To get the best possible footage, it is best to use a fixed point throughout, to capture the same head to mid-thigh image. Some pregnancy time-lapse videos are that simple, such as the effective Mitropoulos Family’s Daily Photos-Pregnancy Time-lapse which compresses the whole 9 months and 11 days into 1 minute.
After the gestation period, many time-lapse videos show the mother in the perinatal stage, ready with a bag in hand to head to the hospital. After the birth, videos often conclude by the new-born baby being held in the final frame so the viewer can see the new arrival. Some go further, and the time-lapse merges with a video of proceedings at the hospital parturient, such as Varia & co Bump Transformation Week by Week. No 2.
Getting creative with pregnancy time-lapse
Time-lapse of pregnancy focusses on the growing bump, however, to add further interest, other aspects of daily life can be added into the footage. Byron Louie photographs his enceinte wife Monique in the same pose every day, but her surroundings change as the nursery is decorated and their dogs attempt to steal the show. So, around her pregnancy growth, we also see more of the story and feel more connected to the couple (& their dogs) and their preparations for the imminent arrival in Time Lapse: Pregnant to Baby in 90 seconds. Photo a day. (Part 1 of 2)
Others try to spark further interest, such as this dancing pregnancy time-lapse video by Jenna Sue, where the expectant couple dance around in the nursery-to-be, to create a fun atmosphere whilst the baby bump grows and a super tasteful nursery takes shape.
In “Tale of Nine Months”, Matan and Yonatan Tamarkin add further creativity to their pregnancy time-lapse by introducing an expanding and contracting balloon to the shot. This indicates how the woman’s body, parents’ love, and a family’s size grows over nine months of pregnancy. Changing backdrops and surrounds also add interest, showing changing seasons to signify the passage of time.
Poignancy and pregnancy time-lapse
Pregnancy time-lapse videos tend to be optimistic and happy, but when those videoing embark on the childing journey, they are unaware of what nature may have in store for them. This video, Twins pregnancy timelapse: 9 months in 3 minutes, full of joy celebrating the development of twins becomes tinged with sadness as one of the twins doesn’t make it through. This reminds us of how delicate and out of control the whole reproduction experience can be.
Time-lapse of animal pregnancies
We are interested not only in human developments but also in those of our nearest pets and animals. Unfortunately, it can be a little hard to get an animal to pose in the same position to document gravid developments. Many animals also do not show such dramatic changes as humans. This is demonstrated in this home spun time-lapse video of expecting Ruby, a two-year-old Labrador Retriever who was photographed for 60 days of pregnancy.
Another attempt to show animal pregnancy can be seen with the time-lapsed movement of this seven weeks pregnant chihuahua belly.
Why use time-lapse
Time-lapse is a useful tool to condense the lengthy and often subtle changes in the growth of humans and animals. It gives us insight and speeds it all up so we can appreciate dramatic changes over time. Time-lapse captures developments in humans that are not only eye-catching but also an informative way of documenting such growth for the public, the family, and in the future for the child or children that have just emerged.