Peter Stuifzand

Creating stopmotion videos with mencoder

A few days ago I found out that my camera can make little stopmotion movies. It’s really easy, but the quality is really low, only 320x200. My camera can make pictures at a resolution of 2560x1920 and I want to make use of the available pixels. So I start my search for the most amazing way to create a stopmotion movie.

The first method of putting pictures after each other to create a stopmotion movie I remembered was animate, a program bundled with ImageMagick. When I tried to use it on the 2.5MB pictures, it took a lot of time. After I resized the pictures to 800x600 it created the animation in a few seconds. But it was not exactly what I was looking for.

The second way I tried was using ffmpeg. I used the explanation from But my version of ffmpeg doesn’t seem to work really well. I didn’t want to create a movie for me.

The third and final way I tried to make a movie was with mencoder. It is part of mplayer.

mencoder mf://*.jpg -mf w=800:h=600:fps=12:type=jpg \
  -ovc lavc -lavcopts vcodec=mpeg4:mbd=2:trell      \
  -oac copy -o output.avi

This command will create a video called output.avi from the jpegs in the current directory with a fps of 12 and a size of 800x600.

Creating the sound file is not really hard. I created it by recording myself, while watching the movie. I trimmed the soundfile with audacity to make it sync with the video. You can use mencoder to add sound to the video with the following command.

mencoder source.avi -o destination.avi -ovc copy -oac copy -audiofile file.mp3

See here the result:

Dubbelvla from Peter Stuifzand on Vimeo.

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