PANORAMAS HAVE BEEN popular products for professional photographers to produce for bespoke purposes for many years, their long and slim characteristics enabling a vast amount of information to be included. While in films days there were specialist cameras such as the legendary Fujifilm 6x17cm out there – a favourite of landscapers everywhere, that produced massive negatives or transparencies on medium format film – these days the favoured approach is to work with digital files and to then stitch them together using software such as Serif’s highly versatile Affinity Photo programme.
Shooting the files for the panorama is easy enough as long as photographers remember to leave an overlap of around 15% between the frames to ensure no detail is lost. It’s essential to be working with a steady tripod that’s been carefully levelled off to ensure the horizon stays in exactly the same place through the entire sequence, and it’s up to the individual to determine how wide they want their final panorama to be. Both 180-degree and 360-degree results are easily attainable and you would be wise to shoot the entire sequence in a matter of seconds to ensure there are no changes in the lighting to give the game away.
The good thing about working with a software such as Affinity Photo is that not only is the whole process so simple and straightforward that it shouldn’t take longer than five minutes to complete, but you can also work with a multitude of file formats, such as JPEG, TIFF, PNG and Raw, giving you ultimate flexibility in terms of other postprocessing work you might want to carry out on the files and how large the final output file might be. For those working around the concept of a massive enlargement for use on the likes of a billboard that’s a very useful facility to have.