Tag: Nikon Df

Making Panoramas in LR and PS

My interest in panoramas was sparked by the wedding photography of Ryan Brenizer and what has become called the Brenizer Method.  Essentially, Ryan Brenizer became famous for creating a very narrow DOF in panorama portraits of couples.  I think they’re great!  I have used it in landscapes and still lifes with some success.  It’s where digital cameras are so good to have in your camera collection.

Taking panoramas is fun with a DSLR or whatever D style camera you use.  I think smaller numbers of pixels help if you tend to shoot a lot of images.  I know I do.  My Df is a 16 megapixel camera, and sometimes i just take a scattergun approach to shooting – lots of images covering more area than I think I want.  I try to take a picture of my hand to show where my pano pictures begin and start.

To get consistent image exposure, it’s necessary to use manual exposure and turn off auto focus.  Consequently, I like to take an image using my preferred f/stop and do everything else on auto.  Test images are important and worth the few minutes required to do. This will give me my shutter speed and iso.  If the image is too light, I might drop the EV and so on.  Once I like what I see, I set up the manual techniques, take a picture of my hand – often out of focus – and begin to take pictures.  On a conservative day, I take maybe 20 images; on others I have taken as many as 130 or so.  Fewer images taken  works out better – easier on you (that camera gets heavy) – and easier on your software and computer when stitching the images together.

I have also done panoramas using digitalized film images.

Once done, I import my images into LR.  Looking for my hands, I export the images into subdirectories labeled, conveniently, Pano 1, Pano 2, etc.  Use whatever you like.  During the export, I change everything in size, using, for instance, 1024 as the length of the long side of the image.  When you have a 100 images, reducing in size is important.  You can also apply filters globally across these smaller images.  These details I assume you know how to do, or learn.

After reducing all the images in size, I do a Cntl-A in the subdirectory to get all the images, and do, in LR, Edit, Merge to Pano in PS (down at the bottom of the pop-up menu).  Off to PS and after clicking OK, the magic begins.  It can take awhile.  The nice thing about using PS as opposed to LR for a photomerge is that any ones which cannot be used in the pano are kicked to their own spots in the final image.

Here is an example of a panorama I took the other day.  All told, 137 images.  You can see that PS decided some did not belong in the final merge.

This pano was also just plain bad. I redid it and this was the result:

The panorama in PS can be more than huge! Make sure you go to Layers and choose Flatten Image. If you try to save it without doing this, PS will bug you to remind you. Do it. Then save it and it will go back to whatever directory you have the original images in LR.

After cropping and editing, the final result was this one you see at the top of this post.

Just Washed

I am not a fan of washing dishes, or housework in general, so modern conveniences like dishwashers are much appreciated. However, some things are just not meant to be sent through the dishwasher. These include wooden cooking utensils, such as this one made by my husband, teflon pans, Le Creuset, and so on.

And, besides not liking housework, I must admit there are times when immediacy is a true pleasure. That pleasure can be found with the digital camera! If you have been following along here, you know that film is by far the dominant photo force these days, but yesterday after spending several hours cleaning up the side patio of last year’s dead things, it was nice to pull out the Df and wander around. I wandered around the house, the back yard, posed my vase of daffs, observed my porch lamps, and so on. Nothing exciting, just enjoyable. The dogs were even well behaved and I got a couple of cute ones there, too.

So, en route to the Valley – the San Fernando Valley to be specific – I will drop off a roll at the nearby photo lab – and await its return. Meanwhile, the Df is back in action, and will be now that the weather has sweetened up a bit. Digital and film are great companions when you are out and about.

Ready to Plant

Today is a day to spend cleaning up the side patio – aka “The Dog-Free Zone” or DFZ – getting rid of dead, dried stems, old planting soil, digging up bulbs to replant and share. The usual gardening stuff. And, to plant some peppers: Mirasol chilis.

There is something that got my eye with these chilis. The plant is tall and upright, and the peppers stick upright, like fingers, from the far end of the stalk. The flavor is good, too.

So, into some coconut planting containers to see if, in SoCal, I can get these seeds to germinate in our mild weather. I plan to date the planting containers and move through them over a course of several weeks to see if they will pop up. No idea if they are self-fertilizing, so we will see what we will see.

Nothing like spring cleaning before spring planting!

End of the Season, End of a Project

One more day for the B&W photography project! What an experience this has been. I think my biggest lesson learned here is looking at light and dark – contrast – something which color so easily hides for me as I see a million shades of green when I look at grass. How light plays against other things, too, is a big lesson. Light on a ridge top against the one beyond it. Light on the edge of a trunk. Shadows on a wall. I have also learned that red and green often merge in film photography or conversion of color to digital. As a result, learning how to manipulate software is another lesson.

I like setting goals that are simple. The goal of one black and white photo per day made me limited in what I could do – sometimes I broke it to get a sip of color – but infinite in its potential. Simple goals allow for complexity as advancement in a goal develop. Complex goals are restraints against experience. I have goals for 2020 (you can read about them here) with regards to photography, but other goals, too.  I would like to say one goal is to be more focused on one thing, but for me, it’s anathema to my magpie personality!  Simple goals but lots of them is more my style.