Stunning photos… and the ones I took…

By | June 6, 2016
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Well, I hope you’ve had the lovely sunny weather we’ve had. (I know, I know, I’m tempting fate for snow, hail and thunderstorms for the coming week now).

And it reminded me of some photos I’d taken a while ago, when on holiday. I’d taken some meaning to put them together into a panoramic photo – you know, one of those where you take several photos of a view, turning around slightly as you do, then you put the photos together to make one very wide picture. It’s sometimes called “stitching” them together.

You can see some pretty stunning ones on the web – for example these.

Mine seems pretty tame by comparison, but it reminds me of a really good holiday.

And it occurred to me that I’ve never explained how to do this – and it’s not as hard as you might think.

First of all, you need to take the photos – just try to take them at about the same level, and overlapping slightly, so the right edge of one has the same stuff in it as the left hand edge of the next.

Then put the photos onto your PC (or you can do this on your tablet or even smartphone – I’ll come to that it a moment) and go to this website.

Click on the option you want (normally “Wide angle”) and it’ll pop up a window for you to select the photos you want to use. Find them, and click on the first one. Then hold down ctrl and click on the next one and if you’re using more than two, keep going until you’ve chosen them all.

Then click on OK and it’ll do it’s stuff – it might take a minute or two and it should show you the end result.

For example, I had these two photos – which actually overlap by a bit more than you need.

And it turned them into this:

It’s not as stunning as some of the panoramic photos you can find, I’ll grant you, but it shows how it works!

You don’t have to use just two photos – you can use more if you like, to make an even wider finished picture.

If you want to download the photo so you can keep it or even print it later on, you can click on the cogwheel labelled “options” and choose “save as a large image to your local hard drive”. Then give the photo a name and click on OK. It’ll normally save it into the same folder the photos you used to make it were in.

If you want to do the same thing on a tablet or phone, you can go to the same website and it’ll let you download a free app that does much the same thing.

The thing that struck me is how much quicker and easier it is than I expected – you don’t have to line the photos up yourself or anything – just choose which photos to include and it does it.

Next Steps on Your PC & Next Steps on the Internet – one copy less because…
Later this week, Mum and Dad are coming up to visit. And I’ve put aside a copy of the new books I’ve been talking about for them. For Mum in particular this time.

They’ve got a Windows 10 PC, so the newly updated books are just right for them – and Mum has mentioned that she’s thinking about setting up a Facebook account. She knows my sister in Australia often puts photos of her and her two boys (well, I say boys… they’re both grown up and one of them towers over me) up on it, so she’s particularly keen to use it to keep up with what the family are up to.

Anyway, it’s one of the things covered in these books – what Facebook really is and how it works (no-one ever seems to explain this properly), how to set up an account, how to use it and the important things you should know about keeping your information private and so on. So I’ve put a set aside for them.

If you’re interested in the books, well, don’t worry, we’ve still got plenty, even after putting Mum and Dad’s copy aside. You can read more about what’s covered and if you’re interested, order a set on free trial here.

4 thoughts on “Stunning photos… and the ones I took…

  1. Chris

    iOS 9 has a panorama button built in to the camera, so you don’t need a special app. Just twist the phone/tablet and it does it all for you.

    Reply
    1. Tim Post author

      True – and if you’re using have a recent iPhone or iPad to take the photos, that’s an easier way to do it.
      Thanks for mentioning it!
      Tim

      Reply
  2. Geoff Lambert

    One point worth noting if are taking multiple photos is that it is best done using manual settings on your camera (if it has them) so that it does not automatically change the exposure or aperture settings as you rotate your position with respect to the light. This keeps all the pictures looking about the same and helps the stitching look seamless.

    Reply
    1. Tim Post author

      Good point Geoff! Otherwise you could end up with photos that fit together perfectly but with one half brighter (or whatever) than the other.
      Thanks for sharing the tip!
      Tim

      Reply

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