Panorama Tutorial?
Where can I find a tutorial on the web for creating Panorama Scenes? Being new to the DSLR scene I think a panorama would be a fun exercise but dont really know where to start..

Available tools:DSLR with 1.5 crop factor18-200mm 1:3.5-5.6 Auto Focus50mm 1:1.2 Manual Focus24mm 1:2.8 Manual FocusTripod with what seems to be an adequate pan and tilt headPhotoShop CS3..

Comments (9)

To do panoramas-.

For panoramas- -use tripod. you must keep it level with the horizon. if your tripod does not have a level builtin then buy one that slides into your flash hotshoe. again make a max effort to get the camera level..

-for exposure. set the exposure by pressing halfway and noteing the fstop and shutter speed. you are trying to find the brightest part of you panorama scene to be. once you have found the brightest check the fstop and shutter speed. put camera into manual metering mode and use those settings. do not change them for any part of the panorama..

-lens selection. I shoot mine with a 20mm. tried a 35mm didn't work, the individual shots didn't overlap. the angle of view wasn't wide enough. note: SHOOT THE LENS VERTICALLY. this is the only way to get some vertical scene, otherwise the panorama will be shaped like a hotdog.

In vertical you are cutting your angle of view way down. my tripod has degrees engraved in the mount, I was shooting at only a 15 degree spread and in looking at the shots before stiching there wasn't that much overlap. I later shot panoramas with 35mm 50mm; the hot dog effect was more pronounced. the panorama itself did work..

-determine in advance the center point of the scene and try to go X number of shots on each side of it. for me with my setup a 120 degree scene is 7 shots; the center and 3 on each side. if I go with a 35mm lens then a 120degree scene will take 13 shots. no matter what lens you use realize that you are adding only 33% new scene with every shot, the rest is overlap for the right and left adjoining shots. the only exceptions are the end shots in the whole scene. it is possible to add another row above and/or below the first one.

You must make sure that there are no gaps..

- I stick my hand in front of the lens and shoot, then shoot the panorama, the 7 shots, then put hand in front of lens and shoot. later I know that everything between hands is the panorama..

-i have used cs2 or the panorama factory software to make the panorama. for either couldn't be simpler simply select the shots and it does the work. this is where using a level pays off. the software is leveling the scene to make the long rectangcal, but if the scene was not as level as possible in the first place the vertical becomes less and less(you end up with hotdog shape). so having the tripod and camera level is very important. also when mount and shooting vertically make sure the camera really is vertical, carefully check by looking threw the viewfinder.

-on focusing- what I do is to simply preset the 20mm lems at infinity, because of depth of field everything from 5.64ft to infinity is in focus at f11.0 distance 200ft. you can also use a hyperfocal focus setup. but thanks to the DOF table, just setting the lens at infinity is simpler. -i left WB alone, that is set at AWB; or you can use a preset setting like sunny or cloudy, but once set donot change it till panorama shots are done..

-online depth of field calculator available here-

-for panoramas, the software I use is either panorama factory orPTGui or cs2. the one that works best for me is PTGui. I have since gotton PTGuiPRO, expensive but worth it. has many features and abilities that the other software does not have, including the ability to process 360 and 720degree sphereical panoramas, plus many projection types...

Comment #1

Thank You..

I would have never thought to shoot vertical..

My tripod head doesnt have markings but my viewfinder does have 100% frame coverage. Would it be ok to guess?.

At the moment I dont have a level on my tripod head. The level that mounts on the hot shoe sounds like a useful accessory. In the meantime I may have to do my best guess work here too..

As for lens, my 24mm sounds like the best bet. Unfortunately Ive got some nasty dust inside that lens. Ill worry about that dust later. A successful panorama would be the main concern for this exercise..

This leaves me with software. I have some grasp of layers and masking. CS3 also has a tool for lens correction. My approach after this would be trial and error. I have read good things about PTGui here in the forums. Thanks again!..

Comment #2

If you tripod hean does not have degree marks then YOU HAVE TO GUESS, but there must be an overlap. I use 33% overlap. it works and is convienient..

If you wish to keep your old tripod go to this website. this head mounts on top of your existing tripod head and has degees and a level..

I have it, it has some nice reviews and is cheaper than just about evry other pano head out there..


Comment #3

This was a fun experiment that helped familiarize me with my camera..

I managed to find photomerge in PhotoShop..

After leaving the location I thought oops, I left white balance on auto. It seems I always realize I forgot something. It didn't seem to have any effect. A UV filter may have helped also..

This Panorama is comprised of ten photos..

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #4

Here's a larger view. Sorry for the confusion. This is my first attempt at posting images..

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #5

Very nice job. for a first attempt it is even nicer..

Do not concern yourself if you run the wb in awb. I do that all the time. remember what awb is doing-it is making the light revert and be seen at a certain condition or standard. this what you want anyway. you can use awb or a single set wb. what you do not want to do is change the wb as you shoot the panorama.

If your white balance was changed from shot to shot what you get is vertical banding or line in the sky especially as the pano go from one set of wb to another set of wb in the adjoining pictures...

Comment #6

The reason you don't want to use awb when shooting panoramas is that the camera can change the white balance between shots depending on the content of the scene. In the case of the desert scene, both the light source and the scene were quite uniform, so little or not change in wb was made by the camera. The results could be quite different with a different scene. It is best to choose a single white balance appropriate for the most important parts of the scene and lock that in..

Remy, this is a very nice first attempt. I'm impressed that you thought to pitch the camera down a bit instead of putting the horizon dead center. Most people are too locked in to the assumption that the camera must have no pitch (which isn't true) and end up with hand-and-half sky and ground shots. It hard to tell, but the frame to the far right may have been stiched tilted so that the horizon appears to droop down. Or that could be real and legitimate,given the slope of the bajada. At any rate, nice job..


Comment #7

Thanks Gary for walking me threw this. Thank you too Dave for your thoughts. The right side of this landscape is actually about 1000ft lower than the center...

Comment #8

The creating of panoramas is very large area of different conditions..

If you have close objects on them you will need panohead. For example Nodal Ninja or Panosaurus, Google them. Or build your own..

Some good tutorials you will find and

Here are two I made lately outdoor indoor in my workshop

Comment #9

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