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Hi all,

 

For what I´ve red, there are quite a few in-camera considerations for later successfully coming up with a panorama in PS (the following seems to apply to land photography):

 

1-Using a tripod

2-Leveling the camera

3-Overlaping 20-30% of the shots

4-Shooting vertical despite you´re looking for an horizontal panorama (to reduce distortion)

5-Shooting manually with parameters (speed, f, WB) set to a compromise in between all the segments

6-Going longer than 35mm in focal lenght to reduce distortion

7- Pivoting the lens around a nodal point to reduce distortion effects of parallax

 

So far so good, but now I want to translate this UW for shooting a large panorama of an UW mountain that must be more than 100m long and I sincerely have no idea of how undertaking it:

 

-Mountain base is quite deep (>50m) so tripod seems not to be the way to go (I know it has been use in shallower water with wrecks, ie) and therefore parallax and assembly problems will be high

-Going longer than 35mm UW is no option, but I doubt in between tokina 10-17 (at 17 barrel distortion is bereable) or Nikkor 12-24

-How may shots for section do you estimate I´ll be needing to have chances of coming up with the panorama? Do I need to stick to the nodal point theory or I could just swim all along the wall making photos at the same distance/depth?

 

Or should I just drop this crazy idea? (last but not least :) )

 

Hope to get your input, guys!!!

Edited by Pedro Carrillo

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when i do them on land, tripod results are better than hand held, nodal slide is better than no nodal slide and i use a 20mm ais lens on fx because it's easier than using a 35mm.

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All your information is valid for topside panoramas where water is not an issue. Underwater, light and clarity are the killers of pivot-point panoramas. I assume you are planning on using natural light on these shots? I would recommend trying smaller subjects first, 2 or 3 shot panos by swimming in a straight line and allowing for a great deal of cropping. The welcome page on my website has a 3 shot pano of a bommie which was done by a straight line swim.

I have found that holding the camera level from shot to shot is the most critical aspect to a successful stitching. If you can get a horizontal & vertical level attached to your housing, that will help a great deal. The wider the lens, the more critical this becomes.

I absolutely recommend you challenge yourself to this task, just work up to it in steps so you don't get frustrated. I would love to see your results, good & bad. That is how we all learn.

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I tried shooting some panoramas using a Magic Filter in the Bahamas. I thought that with the great photo stitching capabilities of Photoshop CS4, I could take a number of shots and Photoshop would put them together. I have one on my web site of five horizontal images stitched together and another of a shipwreck using two vertical photos. For the five image panorama, I stood in one spot on the bottom and panned in a half circle as if I was using a tripod. For the two photo panorama, I was also in one place and pivoted. I found that Photoshop did a terrible job of putting them together. I think it is because there are no real definitive cornerstones underwater. I used PTGui to stitch the images together and set control points in each shot for alignment. I was pleased with the results. Here is the five image panorama:

 

sugar-wreck-pano-high.jpg

 

Here is the two vertical image panorama:

Theo-Pano-1.jpg

 

I agree with the comments that trying to shoot the image by swimming in a straight line and keeping the camera level would also work. Make sure that there is enough overlap. You can try using Photoshop and see if you have more luck that I did. I have used it for land panoramas and it has worked extremely well. PTGui is more challenging but it worked. Good luck.

 

I have information about using the Magic Filter and the panoramas at My Website.

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Check this post also, very impresive work http://wetpixel.com/i.php/full/claude-ruff...rubis-panorama/

 

It kind of boils down to two type of panorama underwater, one is a spin around an axis panorama that will give you a surrounding point of you from where the diver/camera is, the other is like that submarine pano in the thread, very long subject that you wish to visualize without the usual light/sharpness fall off associated with further point of view in the water column. similar to the archeological cut and paste used for areal view. actually both valid option and not the type of image frequently seen.

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Here's one I took with my Canon G7, it's about 7 shots:

 

sipadan_01.jpg

 

Of your 7 points:

 

-you don't need a tripod, even on land, unless you're taking a long exposure or hdr

-software can take care of levelling

-i'd say you only need 20%, maybe only 15% overlap

-definitely shoot portrait

-yes manual will give you the best results, but again software is good enough to blend your images should you shoot in av

-i'd always go as wide as possible

-yes - rotating around the nodal point is probably the single most important thing you can do to get a good stitch. underwater, especially in a current, this is the challenge

 

Software-wise I'd recommend using Hugin:

 

http://hugin.sourceforge.net/

 

I'm bias though as I'm one of the developers :-)

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Software-wise I'd recommend using Hugin:

 

http://hugin.sourceforge.net/

 

I'm bias though as I'm one of the developers :-)

 

How interesting, I might terrorise you with some questions specifically on UW usage then! ;-)

 

Firstly, what control point detection/automation do you use personally? (I never got around automating that when using old Hugin)

Secondly, what is you experience in making "linear panoramas" (like the submarine above with no nodal point) but in several lines? The actual example to make an "aerial view" of a wreck site? And does any of the automated control point tools handle the problem of finding and connecting photos when they are laid out in two dimensions like this ()

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How interesting, I might terrorise you with some questions specifically on UW usage then! ;-)

 

Firstly, what control point detection/automation do you use personally? (I never got around automating that when using old Hugin)

Secondly, what is you experience in making "linear panoramas" (like the submarine above with no nodal point) but in several lines? The actual example to make an "aerial view" of a wreck site? And does any of the automated control point tools handle the problem of finding and connecting photos when they are laid out in two dimensions like this ()

 

Go for it :)

 

For control point detection I use autopano-sift-c and it seems to do a good job. I quite often add control points manually which is very easy in Hugin

 

I've never played with linear panoramas but there was some discussion about them on the Hugin mailing list. Someone posted this paper which might be useful:

 

http://grail.cs.washington.edu/projects/multipano/

 

Search for 'linear panorama' here, quite a few threads come up some of which discuss the right settings in Hugin:

 

http://groups.google.com/group/hugin-ptx

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