Alkborough Panorama

Today I thought I would practice taking panorama photographs. I went over to Alkborough where I know there is a nice view of the rivers Ouse and Trent joining to become the Humber.

This is the normal view that I might capture from this spot.

Alkborough Pano-1-Edit

It was a bitterly cold day and the ground was muddier than I have ever known it but despite the numb fingers and appalling conditions I set my camera up on a tripod where I would be able to sweep it round for a good view.

Alkborough Pano-2To compensate for any distortion that can occur as the camera is moved around I used a bracket that holds the camera slightly backward of the tripod, giving it a smaller arc to travel through.

Before I started I hand-held the camera and took a series of portrait photographs freehand, trying to keep the camera even and trying to get a reasonable amount of overlap in each shot. I merged them together in Lightroom to create the photograph below. I actually started by taking photographs quite high up and as I moved round my hands dropped meaning that I needed to crop the image quite heavily to clean up the dead space.

Alkborough Pano-3-Pano

I used the spirit level in the tripod to ensure that the tripod was perfectly level and then I also used the gyroscope in the camera to ensure that as I moved the camera round it stayed level.

I used the markings around the tripod to mark where my panorama would start and stop, I also took a shot every time I came to mark.

I merged the photos together in Lightroom but because some images didn’t fit together well on the right I chose to crop that part of the image out. I also converted the image to black and white.

Alkborough Pano-14-Edit-Edit

My eyesight is not very good. I have an astigmatism and wear vari-focal lenses and tend to rely quite heavily on my camera’s auto-focus. I found that as I was moving the camera round the auto-focus was zooming in and out and I wasn’t sure how this would affect the final images. The next lot of images I took on manual focus. I picked a point in the centre of the scene, focussed on that and took all of the shots using the same setting.

Alkborough Pano-51-Pano-Edit

I wasn’t satisfied with this view and moved down the hill for a change of scene and, because it was so cold, I thought a little walk might warm me up a bit. I set the camera and tripod up similarly for this next view.

I like this better even though the curve in the hill does make it look a bit distorted.

Alkborough Pano-136-Pano-Edit

For my final attempt I actually did three sweeps across the scene. I took one where the horizon was at the top of the viewfinder, one where it was two thirds up the viewfinder and a third where it was just a third up the viewfinder.

I wasn’t sure how I would merge all three rows of images together but Lightroom coped with it brilliantly. I then just converted it to black and white.

Alkborough Pano-136-Pano-2-Edit

I think this is my favourite. I like that the trees are fully in view and although you can’t see it on here, I am impressed by the amount of detail in the scene.

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