Best way to stabilize building timelapse

Hi guys,

I made a time-lapse of a construction site from a crane over the course of 1year.
The crane was quite shaky because of the height and there is parallax. The camera took about 60 frames per day.
So the light is changing fast, that’s why stabilizing is difficult.

I am new to Mocha, but I think it might be the best option to stabilizing it. But it seems it might have a problem with the fast changing shadows, light and also the rooftop of the building is changing a lot because of the construction.

Now, my idea would be to track the 4 statues on the roof, because they are visible throughout the whole time-lapse.

But how can I do this without selecting the whole roof?

Or are there better solutions?

Thanks for your help =)

@maximilian Hiya, I’m new to this stabilization so I’m interested in how it goes but just had a play on mine,
I tracked the door handle & the mirror on this car, making a tracking spline track the handle, then using the spline with + to add another on the mirror, then went to stabilize & chose Max Smoothing,
Does this not work with your footage?

Hi there, @dexcon

For that much rapid lighting change, I would say try some preprocessing on this footage first. I can’t see what you see from a still, but I can imagine is it tons of light flickering.

You can do something like this with this tutorial, which is very helpful: How to sharpen footage with a Hi-pass filter in After Effects | After Effects Tutorial - YouTube

Then precompose that greyscale image with all attributes in the new composition and apply Mocha AE, track, then copy and paste the Mocha AE effect back to the original plate to stabilize.

If you use Mocha Pro, you can simply render a stabilize. If you use Mocha AE, you’re going to need to use inverted corner pin data.

Hi Mary, sorry to but in on this convo, :smirk:
I don’t have the flickering in my test but when i used 2 splines the car got a bit distorted in Stabilization, I tried it with 6 splines & it seemed to hold the shape of the car better?
does that sound like the right path to keep the shape of something?

@gid.joiner Yeah, multiple shapes really help lock things down in stabilization, but understand if there’s a lot of handheld parallax it will never be locked down without any weird perspective shifts. It’s still a 2D inverse motion, not a 3D set reconstruction, so it can’t make parallax disappear. And it can’t make motion blur disappear.

1 Like

@maryp … just in an effort to improve my own use of Mocha Pro, my original thought when seeing this post (before any replies) was that the light green roof to the left of the construction site, and the white building in the upper right quadrant of the image would have been good targets for splines as the basis for stabilisation - mainly because they are larger segments of the image than, say, the statues. But then I never thought of the flickering of light changes over the 60 frames per day. It would be appreciated for a comment on this, even if the situation is with not with time lapse but with 25 or 30 fps motion. Unfortunately, I do struggle a bit with stab in Mocha Pro though I have had some brilliant results.

Have you tried the high pass thing I just shared? And if so, what stands out to you as details that are consistent in the shot? Those are the details you want to find. Preferably at every corner of the building you need to center on.

Thanks Mary, yep makes sense, i thought it would be something like that, as the camera moves it shows different parts of the car & mocha isn’t going to create a 3d model for me :+1: you put into better words than i would :+1::grin:
Btw Maximilian was the orig comment who you sent the high pass thing to, dexcon n i just jumped in on his thread :grin::man_cartwheeling:

Thanks, for the fast replies.

@maryp : - yeah there is still flickering, I tried to reduce it with LR-Timelapse and AE flcikerfree plugin.
- I have just aplied the high pass, it for sure looks sharper and does not flicker as much, because the high pass evens the highlights.
- I’m now going to try to track it.

@Gid.Joiner : - yes multiple slines would be great.
-'ll try only to select the statues, because they are the only part of the roof that was not touched, during construction.

As a first step I stabilized the footage in AE with a one Pin Tracker, to make it easier for Mocha to track it.

I’ll update you after the tracking =)

Hi, yeah looking at your pic i think i’d track the four corner statues on the building, all 4 splines in the same layer. from what has gone in the comments above from Mary & from my car, that’d keep the building looking right :man_shrugging::+1:

@maryp … I am just a little confused. I think that you’ve taken it that I am the OP - but the OP is maximillan - not me. I’ve not received any ‘high pass thing’. And the first reply is addressed to me even though I hadn’t made a prior comment.

I just had a ‘follow up’ question on the issue raised by the OP which seemed to me to be a reasonable question.

Sorry, I clearly got you both mixed up.