How to capture a digital landscape panorama

February 1st, 2012

The next educational how-to series on all things landscape photography of Australia reveals how to shoot and then stitch a panorama image. This first part focuses on what is required when out shooting the panorama where part two will then provide instructions on how to finally stitch the separate images taken to produce the panorama. Should you be interested in receiving more free tips and tricks then subscribe to this blog to receive good quality, helpful and best of all free information on landscape photography of Australia. I also run popular affordable One-on-One Landscape Photography Courses in the Perth area to get you achieving professional quality results in no time. To get you started however download the free 20 Tips and Tricks to achieving Professional Results in Landscape Photography guide to learn many of the tricks that the pros use!

The advent of digital photography now means that it is easier than ever before to create a panoramic photograph. Trying to produce a panoramic image in the past with film meant a significant investment in specialist panoramic format equipment but now for a small outlay you too can be producing striking panoramas. The first part is the shooting. Using a DSLR, follow the simple steps below to capture all of the separate images required to stitch them together on a computer later:
7 Easy Steps to achieving a Landscape Panoramic Photograph
1. First of all a tripod is a must for taking panoramic photos and you must ensure that the tripod head is perfectly level!

2. Start-off by setting-up the camera vertically using a portrait orientation in order to reduce the amount of edge distortion and to provide more scope at the top and bottom of the frame for cropping later

3. Next with the camera in Aperture Priority mode (Av), determine the exposure required for each separate image that will be taken by panning across the entire scene whilst holding the shutter button halfway down in order to check the recommended exposure (in this case shutter speed). Change the shooting mode to Manual (M) and then set the exposure for the brightest frame in the set this way ensuring that you preserve the highlights in the brightest frame(s)

4. After setting the focus, switch to manual focus

5. Avoid using automatic White Balance (this does not apply if you’re shooting in RAW format)

6. Begin taking each image and overlap each segment by 30%

7. Shoot each image as quickly as possible to avoid any changing light. If shooting during the times of sunrise or sunset change your sequence of shots to start from the opposite side of the setting/rising sun
That’s it! Shooting digital panoramas is really not that difficult!

Bonus Tip: Never use a circular polarizer filter when shooting images to stitch together into a panorama as the circular polarizing effect in each image will create a wave effect and ruin the final panorama. This only applies if the sky is framed within the composition.

The next part in this series; Part 2 – How to stitch multiple images to create a Panorama will be posted next. Don’t miss out by subscribing to this informative and helpful blog!

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I hope you found this information helpful and I would love to hear any requests from you for any other areas of Australian Landscape Photography that you would also like to learn about.


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