Monday, November 13, 2006

11/13/06: Tips for Shooting Panoramas...

Back when I shot film, I used to love to shoot panoramas -- I'd hold the shutter down and rotate through a scene from left to right (or right to left, or top to bottom, etc.). I haven't done much with panoramas since I converted to digital, but I did come across some handy tips recently for shooting better panoramas.

-- use a tripod whenever possible
-- shoot everything on manual...keep the aperature and shutter speed consistent for all images
-- allow for overlap as you expose each image -- 15-20% of each frame should overlap from the previous frame
-- if using a zoom lens, set it to the middle of its range (between wide angle and telephoto) -- this way you'll likely get the most even lighting and the least distortion
-- try to set the aperature to a small value (but not the smallest) like f11 -- larger aperatures create more uneven illumination
-- ensure that important elements of the panorama (like a building or landmark) is in the middle of a shot, not in an overlap area

Once you have your collection of panoramic images, you can use the photomerge feature in Photoshop. (I'll cover this feature in more detail in the near future.)


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