Creating Panoramic Pictures

"Now this is a broad point of view!"

Creating panoramic pictures can solve the problem of not being able to get all the details of the scene in one shot. Instead of taking several shots and having to look at the scene one frame at a time, this technique allows the photographer to take several shots and stitch them together into one picture.

Bryce Canyon

The best way to take a panorama is from a tripod; this will ensure that all the shots are taken along the same axis. If a tripod is not used, it will be harder to align the photographs when stitching them together. Simply move your camera horizontally, keeping vertical movement to a minimum. Make sure the each successive photo overlaps the previous.

The Software

Stitching can be done manually, but this can be very tedious, time consuming and at times very frustrating. I have tried several programs that will stitch the photos for you.

Most of them will do a very good job of stitching along one axis. Though if horizontal stitching is desired as well as vertical, I have only found a couple of programs capable of completing this task. They are based off of a program called Autostitch. Autostitch is the product of two years of research by Matthew Brown and David Lowe at the University of British Columbia.

A demo copy can be found here. This is a no frills copy of the basic software (note. This version of the software is absolutely free). Also at this web page are links to commercial applications of the software that have added capabilities that can be very useful in producing fantastic panoramas.


The following panorama was taken without a tripod and the results were still pretty good.

As you can see, some editing will have to take place because a tripod was not used and when the pictures were stitched the mountain peek did not align as desired. But with a photo editor you can fix the sky to be more even and crop the bottom to create a pretty good panorama.

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