12 Replies Latest reply on Jan 4, 2016 10:53 PM by Rick Gerard

    Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)


      I'm using CS6 and with either Premiere or After Effects, I import image sequences and generate videos. Is there a way that I can take a video and extract a picture every 1 second (or other interval)?



      If I start with a 60 second video, can I bulk export 60 frames (one at each second mark)?



      Perhaps I need to use a different piece of software? I'm new to video processing. Thanks for the help.



      P.S. Here's my masterpiece made from image sequences: http://www.youtube.com/embed/4oCCc1bri7s?rel=0#t=3m48s


        • 1. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
          Dave LaRonde Level 6

          Is this time-lapse work?  Doing this task in Premiere may be easier.

          • 2. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
            amhainen Level 1

            Well, I'm making a lot of time lapse videos from still images (edited original post for example). I'm trying to figure out how to go backwards. If I record video, can I extract still frames every second or every 30 frames?


            As an engineer, I'll often get a list of events (timestamps) and I match up the closest picture with that event. If I have a video, I'm out of luck. But if I could explode the video into single frames (I don't need all 30FPS or whatever), then I could have a list of pictures to match events.


            Hopefully that clears up what I'm trying to do. Thanks for the reply!


            P.S. This picture is a good example of why I like to record single images. From this hierarchy, I can take a time and find the closest image. If I could make a video into a list of images, it'd help a ton!



            • 3. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
              Dave LaRonde Level 6

              If I record video, can I extract still frames every second or every 30 frames?


              Assuming that you shoot 29.97 fps (the REAL video frame rate, incidentally), you'd have 28.7 times more video than you actually need.  It doesn't sound very efficient to me.  Moreover, you need to lock that camera down!  I think I would stick with your current method (intervalometer?), and NOT using the auto iris.


              The real problem is the weather: the challenge with time lapse is picking a proper exposure for the entire duration, taking clouds into account.  You're not having much luck with that.  AE can help -- not solve -- the problem with the Auto Color effect.

              • 4. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                amhainen Level 1

                Thanks for the pointers on the timelapse...I'm learning as I go. Mounting a camera to a tree isn't a good idea (that was my first video). They get better as I went along.


                Like I mentioned, I'm trying to go backwards and get pictures from video. That's the problem I'm facing now.

                • 5. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                  amhainen Level 1

                  I think this is what I'm trying to do:




                  Another tool I just found:




                  Can I do this in CS6? Also, I'd like to specify the interval of frames. If I couldn't, I think I could write a little VBS to delete the frames that I don't want.

                  • 6. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                    Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    You can render videos with the Adobe Media Encoder, Premiere, or After Effects as an image sequence. If you want one image per second, just make your composition (in AE) or sequence (in Premiere) to be 1 fps. Then, when you export it as an image sequence, you'll get one per second.

                    • 7. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                      amhainen Level 1

                      Szalam, thanks for that info! Any specifics on how to do this? Whenever I need to render something in Premiere or After Effects, I just hit 'Ctrl + M' and choose H.264. I don't know how to export as an image sequence. Thanks so much!!

                      • 8. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                        Dave LaRonde Level 6

                        A few things:


                        How much time are you willing to devote to finding a precise frame among the hundred of thousands that would be generated in single 12-hour period?  Actually, it would be 1,294,704 in 12 hours; I did the arithmetic.  Wouldn't the closest second be adequate?


                        Virtual Dub?  For your ends, I say, "Ugh!"


                        Attaching a camera to a tree isn't a bad idea; attaching a camera to a sapling or a very young tree is a different story.  You need a stable mount.


                        Apparently the exposure of the image isn't a very big concern, which is fine if it's okay with you.


                        In AE, you can run video backwards.  You can use Time Remapping, or you can go to the Stretch panel and set it to negative 100.  You'd have to move the clip in the timeline if you use it.


                        All in all, I get the notion that you're trying to use AE for something it wasn't designed to do.  It's primarily for effects and compositing of images shot for commercial video/film production. 


                        Engineers, while a being a most admirable group of individuals, aren't necessarily the prime users of the application.  You might want to investigate other avenues.


                        Now, I hope for your sake that I'm all wet in my remarks.  I hope other people have better solutions than mine for your situation.  Time will tell.

                        • 9. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                          Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          As someone new to AE, you should definitely start here. You will learn a lot of the basics including how to render. I would never use AE to make an H.264 compression. I always render a lossless file out of AE and then use the Adobe Media Encoder to do the final compression.

                          • 10. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                            Dave LaRonde Level 6

                            Fom on-the-phone conversations with Szalam, I know he is wise.  Take his recommendations to to bank.  Feel free to ignore mine, I will take no offense whatsoever.

                            • 11. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)

                              Thank you so much for posting the Free Video to JPG Converter solution. It is very easy to use and the interface is clean. It saved my ***.

                              • 12. Re: Individual Frames from Movie (Bulk)
                                Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                To extract individual frames from a movie just enable time remapping and do some math. The math is easier if you hold down the Ctrl/Cmnd key and click on the time indicator in the Timeline to change the time display to frames.


                                It's pretty easy to do. You can either do the math or you can just watch the display in the timeline and drag things around until you get what you want. For example let's say that you had some footage that was 6000 frames long and you wanted to show every 60th frame. After enabling time remapping you could just go to frame 100 and then enter 6000 for the frame value and delete the last time remapping keyframe or you could drag the last keyframe to frame 100. Now frame 1 is frame 60, frame 2 is 120 and so on. No frame blending no problem. You have just extracted every 60th frame from the video. 6000/60 = 100. If you want every 30th frame then the math says you move to frame 200 and enter 6000 for the time value.


                                If you don't want to use time remapping you can just adjust the time stretch in the timeline by clicking on the little {} icon at the bottom of the timeline. Say you want to show every 10 frames then just select 10%. Every 20th frame is 5%, every 60th frame is harder with this method because that would be 3.333333333% stretch. You should use percentages that don't run into the never ending number of decimal places problem. That's why I prefer the time remapping method. It's easy and quick.


                                This is very harder to calculate if the time display is in seconds. Once you have retimed your movie you can either render an image sequence or render a video. There's nothing to it. It also works in Premiere Pro by just changing the speed of the playback. As long as the math is correct you won't get any blended frames. There's nothing to it but a little junior high math.