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Your love of photography meets your love of video in the form of photomotion. String hundreds of photos together in a video to create a unique visual style and a new way of conceptualizing your travel photos.

Image: B. Sandman

Creating a photo montage is a wonderful way to creatively use photographs to tell a story. But to create a photomotion video (also called stop motion) you need a little planning to capture successive images to convey movement through static images.

Import and string together the photos in your editing software. Shown quickly and in succession the impression of animated movement is impressive and whimsical. There are many ways you can use this technique to create killer video experience with an everyday camera.

As an example I have created my own photomotion video for you to enjoy. It is the result of snapping over 500 photos over several hours with my wife in downtown Seattle.



Brainstorm what your story is and where you want to go. Pick interesting actions and locations to photograph and get creative with what motion you can convey with photos. You may plan movements or shoot the action as it naturally unfolds, it’s up to you. Planning your movements gives you more control over the end video but capturing the natural movement of a place is very interesting as well.


What is special about photomotion videos is the illusion of movement. By snapping several pictures within the span of a second or two you may capture the
movement of your subject. Whether it is soccer players or sidewinders, when the photos are displayed quickly, one after the other, the images come alive.

The easiest way to capture the images you need is to use a sequential photo setting on your camera. These settings allow the shutter open and close quickly by simply holding down the button.

If your camera does not have a sequential photo setting then you are going to need a little more patience and planning. Take pictures of yourself and anything else that moves, and think cinematically.


This type of photo concept takes lots of pictures to pull off so don’t be afraid to shoot like crazy. You always discard the photos you don’t use. The more images you capture the more colorful video you may produce.


Once you have your photos shot, use your video editing software to present them in a fun and energetic way. The shorter the duration of each photo, the more movement you will be able to convey. I present each photo in my video for .2 seconds.

Play around with different speeds and find something that feels right to you. Craft your video using the most interesting photos and sequences to form some sort of story and utilize music to set the pace and feel of your video.


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About The Author


Joshywashington is a Travel Media Ninja from Seattle who enjoys writing, climbing trees and strong coffee.

  • Michelle

    These are great! I’m definitely going to give this a shot. Thanks for the tips!

  • TimR

    It’s video without the boring parts; it’s like having ADD while on crack! I like it, and am going to give it a try on my next trip (the photomotion, not the ADD or crack). I’m sure I’ve seen them before, but I never felt that click that makes me want to go out and make one of my own–until now. Thanks!

    • Joshywashington

      try it on your next trip, but even better and perhaps more expedient, try making one of your home town.

      Making my photomotion video was lots of fun, and I wondered hy i hadn’t made one before.

      Good luck!

  • dfinepa

    Hi Josh – this is quality, going to have to give this a try! Can you recommend any software?

  • jonny

    ditto dfinepa’s comment – i’m familiar with adobe premiere but it’s a huge program and i would hesitate to get it without a mac. can you recommend any smaller video editing programs for PCs?

  • TimR

    I came across something called PhotoLapse 3 for PCs: I haven’t tried it (I use iMovie too), but it looks interesting.

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