Sweeping Shots

Even back when I was using a manual camera, I’ve tried taking panoramic shots. Panorama photography is capturing the wide view of a subject (usually a landscape) by taking several shots of it, piece by piece, then putting them together to make one whole picture. The first time I tried it with my then new DSLR I made more than 50 shots, sweeping 180 degrees of a city skyline. I manually processed it in Adobe Photoshop, dragging these shots one by one in one file and making sure they were layered chronologically as shot. It took me more or less two hours fixing that one panoramic picture. Months passed, I tediously did all my panoramas that way.

And then I learned about Photoshop’s “Automate” – I nearly go insane the first time I tried it. What you do is open your file shots by automate: Photoshop>File>Automate>Photomerge, then you choose your shots and after that you’ll just sit back and watch how Photoshop will stitch your images on its own… bewildering… I was really dumbfounded. Then all you need to do is merge and crop your complete image.

Merlion Park. Singapore.

City of Bangkok. Thailand.

Bangkok. Thailand.

Kota Kinabalu. Sabah, Malaysia.

Naga City. Camarines Sur, Philippines.

CWC Cablepark. Camarines Sur, Philippines.

Ziggy-zaggy Halsema Hi-way. Benguet, Philippines.

Rizal Park, Roxas Boulevard. Manila, Philippines.

Manggahan Floodway, Cainta & Pasig City. Philippines.

I did a 90-180 degrees turn with these images. Most of these were more than one sweep, like the Petronas Towers; with a 35mm lens, I started with my camera in a vertical eye level, sweep 90 degrees to the left, adjusted the level of my camera upward and sweep back to the same degrees until I reach the tip of the towers – a back and forth sweeping while keeping the lower part of your body and the camera in your hand as you move. Some use tripods when doing panoramas and there are specially designed tripods for this, though I haven’t tried one I think it’s faster and easier to click away just by holding the camera. A few important points before you start clicking your camera for panorama:

  • Make sure that you’ll shoot in just a SMALL quality/resolution. Remember, it going to be a lot of shot for just one picture. Although Photoshop is just a computer program, try to make it easy for the both of you.
  • Lock your focus. I do this by keeping my thumb pressed on the AE/AF button as I shoot.
  • The camera should be in a vertical/portrait orientation.

3 thoughts on “Sweeping Shots

  1. Pingback: Cloudscapes. « the unbearable lightness of being me.

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