Whether you find yourself in a bustling city with towering skylines or a vast, natural landscape, the prospect of capturing a panoramic view is tempting. After all, the art of photography often requires artists to choose which details are most worthy of being included in a frame. Simply showing all that the eye can see eliminates the issue of cutting beauty out of the equation:
Jay P. Morgan demonstrates how to tackle the task of photographing expansive landscapes and shares his strategies covering every stage of the photographic process.
Panorama Landscape Tips
- The key to shooting a panorama is to utilize multiple frames rather than attempting to merge every aspect into a singular composition. Tools such as the Syrp Genie Mini mount straight to a tripod and can be programmed according to specifications such angle of view.
- Though it’s possible to create a panorama with a handheld camera, equipping yourself with a sturdy tripod can be incredibly helpful in the image making process. The goal is for the final image to be seamless; keeping the camera on a tripod creates more stable conditions between photographs.
- During the shoot, check to see how your image sequence is shaping up. If it seems that there are major differences between frames or that your images aren’t coming out quite the way you expected, take a moment to stop and make sure that your settings are correct.
- Try shooting vertically rather than horizontally. Though this may seem counter-intuitive to capturing the most area possible, it could make a major difference in the amount of detail that’s captured per frame.
Post Processing Techniques
- Keep a calibrated monitor. Morgan employs the Datacolor Spyder 5 Elite to keep consistent and correct color between his images.
- After importing the photographs to a hard drive, separate all of the images specific to a single panorama. Place them together in a folder of their own. Make sure that each image is oriented correctly and use batch processing to apply the same global edits to each shot.
- After the images are edited, import them into Photoshop. Select the Automate option under the main File menu. From there, you’ll see an additional option called Photomerge. By selecting Photomerge, a composition is made up of the stitched image series.
- Once merged into a panorama, apply any additional touch ups that may be necessary.
- After flattening the image, you may find that there are segments of the panorama with a bit of warped perspective. Slight adjustments can be implemented by adding a corrective filter. You may also find it necessary to crop in on the stitched image or use the healing brush to fill in any areas that may have been lost in the stitching process.
And voila! Thanks to advancements in photographic software and technology, making panoramas doesn’t have to be challenging. With a working knowledge of the tools available and how to properly implement them, photographers can finally go into situations with the confidence that no detail will have to be left uncaptured.