I was wondering how to make illustrator workflow time lapse ? (e.g. Something like this). Right now I just take screen shot after each step and then stitch together. It is very time consuming and distraction for workflow. Is there any other efficient way?


4 Answers 4


The way i see it your options are:

  • video capture software.

    • You can as a alternative postprocess this and pick frames out of the video later if you want. Benefit of this is that its not interfering with your work. If eating up memory does not bother you.
  • you can tie a hotkey to capture the screen on disk. Software like snagit can do this. Problem is it is easy to forget to capture and you cant capture at the same time as you press other hotkeys (Which is why i built a footpedal). This is the best option for short captures.

  • You can rebuild the video from undo in reverse. Offcourse this means you have somewhat linear steps and sufficently long undo. You also do not get mouse.

  • You can also record just mouse and keyboard intraction. Then rebuild the workflow. There are no commercial tools for this. But if you can make your own then this option allows for ultimate coreography.


I have used Chronolapse in the past without any problems.

You can specify it to take png or jpg screenshots, the region of the screenshots, and how often (one per second is usually a good speed).

It comes with a tool to stitch the screenshots together. Alternatively, you can import them as a sequence in After Effects or maybe even Photoshop.


Record a movie of the screen, then speed it up. There are a ton of shareware apps that can record the screen to a movie file.

  • 1
    Yes, that's last resort :) But are there any better alternatives ?
    – Dexter
    Nov 21, 2015 at 5:57
  • Nearly all recording apps can control sample interval so... @Dexter better how?
    – joojaa
    Nov 21, 2015 at 6:02
  • 1
    I Have no idea why this would be a "last resort". It is commonly how it's done. You start recording... do whatever it is you want to do.. then stop recording and edit the video in a video production application if necessary. There are even screen recorders which allow you to edit the movie file afterwards (like ScreenFlow for the Mac).
    – Scott
    Nov 21, 2015 at 7:23
  • @Dexter Last resort? Isn't this like the best way? What's wrong with recording a video of the screen, are there specific downsides that you have in mind? That's how I would say all e.g. speed art timelapses are done anyway.
    – Roope
    Nov 21, 2015 at 7:27
  • 1
    Umm, I thought that will take lot of memory and space compare to software which just takes screenshot after every defined time period. I was not aware that screen recording software can do this. I will check it out !
    – Dexter
    Nov 21, 2015 at 7:45

In every operating system I know of, there's a way to automate taking a screenshot in fixed intervals. It gives you less control than a foot pedal or shortcut, but over long periods of time I think it would be less distracting.

  • Video capture is fixed interval capture.
    – joojaa
    Nov 21, 2015 at 17:08
  • I find video easier as well, but it seemed like OP was interested in the option. Nov 21, 2015 at 17:59

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