Mittwoch, 31. Oktober 2007

Endless books

Some scenes just ask for getting it repeated endlessly. Where is the start ? Where is the end ?

Freitag, 26. Oktober 2007

On the road with the V705

The first street test with this cam. It is sometimes hard to aim the second and third shot when you have either the sun in the back or there is nothing in the image seam area to help you to position the subsequent shot. Some shots from the streets of Singapore today. The TOM technique is hard to apply on 180 degree images without tripod !

Donnerstag, 25. Oktober 2007

Perfect Panorama with the V705 (II)

Just a quick shot to compare the turn-over-tripod-mount (lets called it TOM) trick.

"Before" Image shot by just roughly pointing and using the assistant on the screen to match. 2 severe stitch problems.
"After" Try to maintain camera position between shoots and using TOM. Still one error, but minor.

In the next session I will compare with a shot using a minitripod.

Perfect Panorama with the V705

I heard some people complaining about the in-camera stitching capabilities of the Kodak V705. I dont agree and give you a tip how to do it right. Even a consumer-size cam like this one has something like a nodal point. In this case this point is pretty much the same like the tripod mount of the camera.
Instead of holding the camera in the usual 1/2 meter from the face, and turning with the whole body and try to match the subsequent panorama images, you try to rotate the camera over the tripod mount. That looks odd and might not be easy for 3 shots because you kind-of need to walk around the camera floating mid-air. But I guarantee you best results with hard to spot seams.
Sample 1: Forget about panoramic composition or light, its a test-shot ! the objects are close to the minimum distance of 25cm and slightly out-of-focus. I made 2 images using the rotate-over-tripod-mount-point. Close objects show always parallax errors if you dont rotate over the nodal point. Can you spot them here ?

Warning Wave

It seems the internet community is solely focusing on sending warning letters and suing each other. The second time I received a letter from a country I visited before to remove certain content in relation to the countries tourism business from my websites. I just hope that landscapes, landmarks, public accessible subjects remain public for photographers and dont become a complete "NO PHOTOGRAPHS OR 10.000$ FINE" area.
Interesting Link1, Link2 in regards of S-O-H in S-y-d-n-e-y.
One day we will find ourselves in a world where you only can take pictures of sand or clouds or water because someone owns the commercial rights on anything else.
The best thing: The name of the person working for legal department of country X sending the last letter send is "Sue". Was that the precondition to get the job ? LOL

Freitag, 19. Oktober 2007

Digital Makeover

Nothing new, in the world of glamor photography beautifying the models is part of the show. Knowing that I judge all the slimming adverts in our newspaper by the creativity and the skills of the PS artist. But this pimp-my-picture seems to be a common request, and customer totally underestimate the effort. I frequently get the request to remove things, polish walls in panoramas.
I always feel like cheating, but what can I do ? Maybe it would be easier if a customer would appreciate your work and accept your quotation.
Sample (guess what is before-after)

Dienstag, 16. Oktober 2007

Kodak V705 Panorama

I remember, I was excited about the announcement of the Kodak V570 in early 2006 when I heard about the 2 lenses and panorama function build-in. Ok, I thought for very long time they would use both lenses the same to create the panorama. Anyway, Kodak came out with a successor in August 2006, a slight upgraded version with 7MP and the breathtaking 23mm lens, which you wont find in this price segment and camera size ! I waited more than one year, Kodak stopped in the meantime the production of the 2 lens cameras completely (I heard create too much trouble), until I finally bought one last week for much less than the previous price of 699.00 SGD.
Even the camera is a consumer camera without any (very few) manual control and providing no RAW files, I instantaneously love this camera. Is a great toy, I can bring it along, its so small it fits in my shirt pocket and it speaks pano. I can play with pano ideas and the image and stitching quality is really ok! Unfortunately it reduces the size of up to 3 (which is almost 180 degree with 23mm) to 3.1MP for each of the images. The result is about 7MP in total. I assume the camera memory cannot digest 3x 7MP images to stitch or it just takes too long. Backdraw: It doesnt save the individual images and there is no way to change the stitching settings (with these results you not really need to). It also allows you to stitch 2 images only, but always on the spot, some kind of panorama assistant show you where to place the next shot.
Best results: Try to rotate camera over the tripod mounting point and dont move the camera with your whole body to cover 180 degree, and try to keep leveled. Believe me or try it our by yourself !
Oh, in case you become excited. Its hard to find a dealer selling this cam, you might find some on ebay.
Here some 2 and 3 stitcher. I will keep you updated with more exciting Kodak pano adventures !

Digital Panorama Camera

Did you never wonder why none of the camera manufacturer ever bothered too create a truly digital panorama camera ? Something like a XPan digital or similar ? I am not talking about the highend gear, like Spherocams or Seitz Digital 6x17, no, something like a small rangefinder camera or even a consumer size camera. But there is nothing, nada, niente, null !
Maybe there is no, or a rather a too small, market. Some brands started to bring out 16:9 formats in their cameras like the Leica D-LUX 3 or Panasonic LX2. Just for the records: Panorama starts with a aspect ration of 1:2 ! So these cameras are just missing the definition of panoramic format, but it is a start ! Some others tried (are trying) to build in-camera stitching to create panoramas on the spot. Kodak, Canon and Olympus are some of them (Canon only provides a panorama assistant in the camera). Anyway if some marketing guy read this, please make one !

Freitag, 12. Oktober 2007

Back again

Time to revive this blog again, too busy with the film blog Even the basics of panorama photography didnt change very much since the first panorama images around 1840's it is still very exciting in both digital and analog world. I came across the website which is site in beta-phase by Carnegie Mellon University in collaboration with NASA Ames Intelligent Robotics Group, with support from Google. Interesting concept and idea to collect high resolution panoramas (stitched) from all over the world. Some of the images are not perfectly stitched or just plain boring, but the majority is very interesting to explore. I created an account and uploaded a couple of panos.