While vacationing in one of your favorite destinations, you encounter a breathtaking scene that you so dearly want to capture. But alas! Your camera won’t capture the entire breadth of the view. Then almost instantly, the panorama option in your camera comes to your rescue. Although you move your camera as you read the instructions flashed on the screen, the final shot is not how you desired it to be. Moreover, there are annoying restrictions on the speed of the camera movement. You need to adjust it now and then, a big spoiler of the beautiful moments. But do not fret any further, all those bilious moments are put to rest by exploiting panorama in Photoshop.
Gone are the days when shooting the panoramic photograph meant investing in a high-end camera or spending hours in the darkroom. In this digital age, with the help of software, you can create marvelous panoramic photos like a pro in no time. Let’s learn how to make a panorama in Photoshop.
- Tools Required for Making the Panorama
- Taking the Pictures
- Making the Panorama
- Tips and Tricks to Click Perfect Panorama
Tools Required for Making the Panorama
Wondering what could give you the perfect panorama? Well, then its the right tools! Check out the important tools for the panorama:
1. Digital Camera: The importance of this equipment needs no mention.
2. Tripod: The use of a tripod makes focusing and framing easy, leveled, and balanced.
3. L Plate: It is optional, yet useful. It enables you to place the camera vertically, and you can easily switch between vertical and horizontal orientations. It can be used only when you are shooting on a tripod.
4. Adobe Photoshop and photo-merge utility: The Adobe Photoshop or Light-room software with the photo-merge option can stitch multiple shots into one continuous panorama image.
Taking the Pictures
So, now that you have got the tools, you need to next think over how to take the pictures? Don't worry if you are an amateur, with our top ideas and tips, we bet you will master in clicking panorama!
The first and foremost rule of any photography is that your camera should be stable, but it becomes all the more important for a panorama, as you have to stitch the images later. Leave the camera in one place to capture images from the same angle and height. You can use a tripod or any flat surface like a wall or a bench. The images can be clicked either in manual mode or auto mode.
In the manual mode, choose the brightest part of the scene, meter it, and set the shutter speed and f/stop apropos to the scene to be captured. Learn more on “F-stop in DSLR Photography: Know Which One to Use.” In the auto mode, set the camera’s white balance either to daylight or auto. Get in depth knowledge on “Photography Basics: What Is White Balance in Photography?” These days all software have the option to edit the white balance of the image in the post-production stage. So it is completely safe to click pictures in the auto mode.
Always keep in mind to shoot all pictures in the same camera setting. You can choose a lens ranging from 50mm to 300mm. Read our article “50mm Lens: Why I Love My Tiny-Tiny Wonder Baby!” The overlapping of each section will depend on the lens you select. For example, with a 50mm or more focal length, 25% of the overlap is enough, while for a shorter lens minimum 50% of the overlap is required.
Another important point to remember is never to use “Auto ISO.” With any change in lighting conditions, your camera will automatically change the exposure between shots. This will lead to unwanted variations in the images. For panorama pictures, select the scene and pan the camera through the scene. This will give you an idea of the composition and the number of sections required for getting an exquisite panorama shot.
For taking the shot, always pan the camera from left to right. Start capturing from the extreme left of the scene and click the shots till you reach the extreme right. Remember to include nearly half of the previous picture in your next picture to create an overlap or for a reference point. This is necessary since using photo-merge with Photoshop requires certain references to blend the images together into a single masterpiece.
If you don't have a tripod with rotating head, then it is best to click the photo from the same position.
Making the Panorama
Now that you have understood how to take multiple shots for stitching the photos together, let us move to the main question, “How to make a panorama in Photoshop?” Creating a panorama in Adobe Photoshop CC or Light-room CC is no rocket science; you just to follow some simple steps and voila! You will get picture-perfect panoramas.
- Open all the images you want in panorama starting with the leftmost corner.
- Go to File>Automate> Photomerge. Select the layout from the dialog box.
- Choose the desired layout and add the open image files.
- The images will be blend and auto aligned into a seamless composition.
- Crop and fix the rough edges.
- Go to Filters > Convert the smart Filter.
- Save the image.
If you working on the image, then save it as PSD as each time you save it as JPEG, your photo gets compressed.
Tips and Tricks to Click Perfect Panorama
While we have covered all the tips and tricks above, here is a quick recap of guidelines you need to follow while capturing images for creating a flawless panorama:
- Overlap images sufficiently.
- Use one focal length.
- Do not change your camera position.
- Distortion lenses are a big no.
- Do not change the exposure settings.
- Shoot wider images so that you can crop the image easily.
- Shoot at a slower shutter speed. Read our article .“What Is Shutter Speed – Learn the Photography Basics.”
An ideal overlap should be from 20-40%. Avoid overlapping beyond 50%.
To conclude, photography is about letting your imagination run amok and carve a persona out with your creative skills. Experimentation and touching new boundaries add fun to this elegant art. With software like Photoshop, you can achieve the perfect shot you desired. Remember "Don’t shoot what it looks like. Shoot what it feels like." So let go of your fears and inhibitions and pick up your camera to get those impeccable shots.
Matthew Brady, the renowned American photographer, aptly remarked, “Results are uncertain even among the more experienced photographers.” So unfurl your imagination and leave the rest to Photoshop as "Everything you imagine can become real." Ping us for any queries and do not forget to share your first panorama with us.