Panoramic Photography

Panoramic Photography

I took this one a few months back up in Whitby (the abbey was behind me in this shot). There are a few important points to remember when getting panoramic photos.
  • Always shoot in portrait mode, this gives more height to the finished shot.
  • Set your tripod level with the horizon, some tripods have a spirit level on them if not you can get hotshoe mounted ones for a few quid.
  • Shoot in manual keeping your aperture, shutterspeed, iso, focal length, focus point and white balance the same for each shot. Meter from where the middle of your panorama will be, if you meter from the sunny side everything else will be underexposed, if you meter from a relatively dark area you risk over exposing the brighter bits.
  • Keep an overlap of about 30%, so if you are panning from left to right look for a feature, such as a tree that is about a third of the way in from the right then when you pan your tripod right, frame so that tree is on the left of the shot. That sounds more complicated than it is.
If you get these basics right you should have a good set of say 4-8 photos that can be stitched using CS3. Photoshop has a really good automatic stitching program (file – automate – photomerge) there are other programs such at PTGui that do a good job too. This panoramic was taken at f/16, 1/4 sec, 43mm at ISO100 I had an 0.9ND grad filter to balance the sky. The file has been drastically reduced so it has a smaller size.

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