Panorama, Not the Hat.

May 09, 2018

The Finzels Reach development. Bristol Project.

Back in the day of “proper” panorama photography the specialist cameras were so big that they had to have huge handles either side of the lens and after inserting a whole role of film (celluloid chemical coated strips popular before digital) and got just three photographs!

Severn estuary from Sea Wall vertorama.

Those were the days. We had proper cameras with handles on to attract as much attention as possible and a massive and extremely heavy tripod that could only be transported to the location by a Yak. Oh, how we toiled to produce six inches long thin transparencies or negatives that no normal enlarger could accommodate and that were extremely difficult for the print industry to use unless they cut them up into sections! But we were proper photographers with a proper big Billingham bag and a proper back ache.

Fields near Lea, Herefordshire.

But now we live in the 21st century. Our DVD’s may not play once covered in jam as we were promised faithfully by Tomorrows World and it has taken the election of a crazed madman to revive the prospects for “Space Force”, but we do have panorama software. So, it didn’t all end in a mess.

Perrygrove Railway wedding venue, Coleford, Forest of Dean

Now we can stitch frames together to make panoramas or we can just “swipe” or camera or phone across any given scene and hey presto – a panorama. Or, instead of side to side, up and down to create “vertoramas”.

Cyril Hart Arboretum, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire.

Why has this technique persisted in photography? Is it because we all grew up on the magic of wide screen movies which told of the landscape beauty in one effortless sweep or is it because they are really useful? We all tend to accept the image format handed to us by the manufacturers but the reality is that some scenes look much better in different formats. Landscapes are a perfect example. Often, dependent on the subject matter the tell the whole landscape story much better and in a much more sympathetically balance way (forget the so called “rule” of thirds).

Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire

I use them from everything from close ups, to landscapes, to interiors and street photography. They work brilliantly. And unlike thin cut slices from a single image, stitches also have a decent file size and so remain cool for publishing. Now, thanks to the power of our pocket techno they are also dead easy to try and, dead easy to use.

Puzzlewood, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire Join one of our courses or specify panoramas on a one to one to find out more.


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