Broaden your hori­zons

Learn how to shoot and stitch to­gether stun­ning land­scape panora­mas

NPhoto - - Contents -

Panora­mas are al­ways a big hit with land­scape en­thu­si­asts. They’re the per­fect way to cap­ture a sprawl­ing vista with­out us­ing an ul­tra-wide lens, or crop­ping your im­age (and there­fore los­ing lots of data). In this project we’re go­ing to show you just how easy it is to shoot and cre­ate stun­ning panora­mas.

To cap­ture a panorama you first need to shoot a se­quence of im­ages, mov­ing or ro­tat­ing the cam­era slightly be­tween each shot. You’ll need to use a sturdy tri­pod, and en­sure that it’s per­fectly level. For the best re­sults you should also shoot in por­trait ori­en­ta­tion, turn­ing the tri­pod head a lit­tle for each shot and al­low­ing for some over­lap be­tween frames. Then, at home, you can merge your im­ages to­gether in post-pro­duc­tion, which is ac­tu­ally a straight­for­ward process.

We trekked up Helvel­lyn in the UK’s Lake Dis­trict for our photo (and of course we took all the nec­es­sary safety pre­cau­tions and equip­ment needed for hik­ing in the moun­tains). How­ever, sim­ply get­ting up high and cap­tur­ing an ex­pan­sive view doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily make for a spec­tac­u­lar panorama – a broad sweep of very sim­i­lar-look­ing moun­tains in the far dis­tance can eas­ily end up look­ing bor­ing rather than spec­tac­u­lar.

The key is to find a lo­ca­tion with in­ter­est and de­tail at dif­fer­ent heights, and to en­sure that there’s some­thing to look at in the fore­ground and mid­dle ground, as well as in the dis­tance – keep an eye out for lakes, trees, build­ings and any­thing else that will bring the scene to life. As with shoot­ing stan­dard land­scapes, a dra­matic sky – as op­posed to a clear blue one – will also help.

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