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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Vertical Panoramas

Traditionally when you think of a panoramic photo the first thing that comes to mind is some scenic landscape that is spread out left to right revealing the expansive nature of a mountain range or canyon or seaside vista.

But don't let yourself get stuck in the mode of thinking that horizontal is the only way to go when it comes to panos.

Take, for example, this shot that I took while wandering through Redwood National Park last spring (18mm, Auto, 1/60s at f/3.5, ISO 720, Nikon D50). This is a fake pano in that I applied a crop to give the look of a panoramic shot rather than stitching multiple photos together. I did the majority of the processing in Lightroom with a little bit of lens correction in CS2.

Tall subjects like these redwoods or a skyscraper can really benefit from a vertical pano crop. Taking this approach can add additional emphasis on the height, helping to better illustrate the dramatic nature of the scene. But you aren't limited to just tall subjects. Even a scenic shot with either a lot of water in the fore or middleground or with a lot of sky can benefit from a vertical pano crop.

*While I haven't tried it myself, I would imagine that trying to compose a vertical pano from stitching together a series of overlapping shots taken while using a tripod might not give you the same effect as applying a crop.