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Create a Video Timelapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro

Mike Maher

Turn a collection or sequence of photos into a timelapse segment with just a few clicks in Adobe Premiere Pro.

Need to turn an image sequence into a timelapse? It’s super easy in Premiere Pro.


Creating a Timelapse in Premiere Pro

Open Premiere Pro and go to File > Import.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Import

In the File Browser, navigate to the folder with your image sequence.

Click on the first image file. Do not select all files. You only want to click on the first image in the sequence.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Select First

In the import browser under your files, click on the checkbox next to image sequence.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Image Sequence

Hit Open.

Your image sequence has now been imported as a single video file.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Open

You can now drag this directly into your Premiere Pro sequence timeline.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Drag and Drop

Problem Solving

Did this not work for you? There are a few things you need to know and check.

Check the Image File Type

Make sure the file type you’re using is compatible with Premiere Pro, like JPG, TIFF, PNG, or even PSD.

If you’re using a different image type, you’ll want to convert your images to a compatible format.

Check the Image Orientation

Make sure all images in the sequence have the same orientation. Your sequence should be all horizontal or all vertical. Having mixed orientations will cause errors.

Edit any photos that may have a different orientation to match the rest of the sequence.

Rename Files in Numerical Order

One of the most common issues occurs if your images are not in sequential numerical order. If not, you’ll want to rename your files.

There are a few ways to “batch rename” your files instead of having to do every file manually.


How to Batch Rename Files Numerically on a Mac

Open the folder with your images.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Rename on Mac

Select all image files with CMD+A.

Right-click or ctrl-click and select Rename ## Items…

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Rename Files on Mac

Change the first dropdown to Format, then change Name Format to select Name and Counter.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Rename Format

If you want, you can enter a Custom Format to name your files. Then, set your number to start at, whether it’s 0, 1, or any number of your choosing.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Rename Format Name and Counter

Then, hit Rename.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Rename

Now, import your files as an image sequence in Premiere Pro.


How to Batch Rename Files Numerically on a PC

Now, you may be tempted to select all the files in the folder and rename the first file. While this will name all your files numerically, it’ll also add parenthesis “( )” to your file name.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t play well with Premiere Pro, and most of the time you won’t be able to import file names with parenthesis as an image sequence.

The best way to rename your files on PC is using a Powershell window.

Open the folder with all your images.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Batch Rename PC

Hold shift and right-click in a blank area in the browser. Select Open Powershell window here. (Make sure to hold shift when you right-click or you will not see this option.)

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Batch Rename PC Powershell

This will open the Powershell window.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Batch Rename PC Powershell Window

Copy and paste the following code into the Powershell:

$i = 0
Get-ChildItem "*.jpg" | foreach-object {Rename-Item $_ "$($i.ToString('D2')).jpg"; $i++}
Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - Batch Rename PC Powershell Window Code

Hit enter and all your files will be renamed numerically.

Create a Video Time-lapse from an Image Sequence in Premiere Pro - PC Files Renamed

Now, you can import those files into Premiere Pro as an image sequence.


Learn more about working in Premiere Pro:

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