Friday, August 13, 2010

How to stitch photos to create your own panorama photo using Photoshop

Ever wanted to remember the view of a particular location? Well, most of us always took photograph of what we focus on and forgot the environment that we are in. That is why panorama photograph is applied to capture the environment. I have actually included some panorama photographs for everyone to have a feel of why it is good to know how to stitch photographs together for a panorama photograph.

Personally, I utilises Photoshop CS4 and took a few practise lessons by myself on how to prepare my photographs for a stitching. Beside beaches, mountains and waterfalls, you cannot possibly capture the entire volcano crater within a photograph from the top of the mountain. Enjoy the view of a volcano crater with the city in the background below from Mount Eden, Auckland.

To begin in capturing your photographs for stitching a panorama photograph, this is how you begin with,

1.) Ensure you hold your DSLR camera tightly and firmly.

2.) Make sure you are perfectly level with every photograph you take from left to right.

3.) Set your DSLR camera to manual setting so that you are getting constant lighting.

4.) Position your camera in a portrait shot position and take your first left photograph.

5.) Rotates slightly right with at least 15% of overlapping photograph image from your left photograph.

6.) Repeat doing step 4 until you decided that it is long enough.

Alright, the photograph above is the longest photograph that I have recently stitched together. Using those photographs that you have taken, you can proceed with on how to stitch the photographs using Photoshop and I have listed them below. If you need more detail help on using Photomerge, kindly follow this link to Adobe. To be honest, I love using Photoshop to do this, because it is very forgiving and easy to use.

Steps to follow on using Photoshop

1.Do one of the following:

■Choose File > Automate > Photomerge.

■In Adobe® Bridge CS4, choose Tools > Photoshop > Photomerge from the Bridge menu bar. Skip to step 5.

Note: In Bridge, choosing the Photomerge command uses all images currently displayed in Bridge. If you only want specific images used, select them before choosing the Photomerge command.

2.Under Source Files in the Photomerge dialog box, choose one of the following from the Use menu:

Files - Generates the Photomerge composition using individual files.

Folders - Uses all the images stored in a folder to create the Photomerge composition.

3.Specify which images to use by doing one of the following:

■To select image files or a folder of images, click the Browse button and navigate to the files or folder.

■To use the images currently open in Photoshop, click Add Open Files.

■To remove images from the Source File list, select the file and click the Remove button.

4.Select a Layout option:

For a video that shows the effect of each Layout option, see

Auto - Photoshop analyzes the source images and applies either a Perspective, Cylindrical, and Spherical layout, depending on which produces a better photomerge.

Perspective - Creates a consistent composition by designating one of the source images (by default, the middle image) as the reference image. The other images are then transformed (repositioned, stretched or skewed as necessary) so that overlapping content across layers is matched.

Cylindrical - Reduces the “bow‑tie” distortion that can occur with the Perspective layout by displaying individual images as on an unfolded cylinder. Overlapping content across files is still matched. The reference image is placed at the center. Best suited for creating wide panoramas.

5.Select any of the following options:

Blend Images Together - Finds the optimal borders between the images and create seams based on those borders, and to color match the images. With Blend Images Together turned off, a simple rectangular blend is performed. This may be preferable if you intend to retouch the blending masks by hand.

Vignette Removal - Removes and performs exposure compensation in images that have darkened edges caused by lens flaws or improper lens shading.

Geometric Distortion Correction - Compensates for barrel, pincushion, or fisheye distortion.

6.Click OK.

Photoshop creates one multi‑layer image from the source images, adding layer masks as needed to create optimal blending where the images overlap. You can edit the layer masks or add adjustment layers to further fine tune the different areas of the panorama.

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