Creating a Panorama

For my first assignment, I had to create two panoramas. One had to be horizontal, while the other had to be vertical. Creating the panorama in Photoshop Elements 10, was actually very simple. The tricky bit is capturing the image on camera.

Here are a few examples of mine that I took a few weeks ago:

Vertical Panorama

Horizontal Panorama

Here are some tips for taking pictures to stitch together into a panorama:

Use a tripod if possible, and pay attention to the spirit level. Keep it level at all times.

Keep the focus consistent in each picture. Start with automatic focus for the first picture, then switch to manual focus for the rest of the shots.

Allow for some overlap between each image – try to overlap the next picture with about one third of the scene in the preceding picture. This should encourage consistency when the image is stitched together.

Now for the easy part – stitching it together in Photoshop. I use Photoshop Elements 10, but the same features should be available in the last few versions.

First, you need to open your images in Photoshop, and save them as jpg. Files.  Keep them all open.

Then you need to use a feature called Photomerge. Go to File>New>Photomerge Panorama

In the interface that comes up, click “Add Open Files”.  Your images should open within the interface.

When the images are up, you can click the Layout option you want to use for Photomerge to stitch together the images. I usually use Reposition as this tends to be more forgiving with inconsistencies in the image, but your particular preferences may require you to choose another option. Go ahead and experiment.

After your image has been stitched together, you may find that there are irregularities in the frame of the picture. In order to get the image perfectly aligned, Photomerge has had to shift the positions of a few of the images, making the frame look irregular. In this case, you will have to select the Crop tool and crop the bits that are out of positin.

There are other software tools available for free online dedicated to creating panorama’s, and I might cover these in a future post.

Personally, I actually had a lot of fun with panorama’s, and I might try and create some better ones in the future.

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