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Thread: Shooting panoramas with moving subjects?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Shooting panoramas with moving subjects?

    Not too long ago, I got into stitched panoramas. Years ago, I used to shoot panos on negative film and stuck the individual prints side by side on a sheet of cardboard. Contemporary software like ICE certainly makes things easier these days! With the stitched panos, Ive mainly been shooting natural landscapes and as such, I don't have issues with moving subjects.

    Soon, however, I would like to try some panos in the city. I think the really tricky thing in this kind of environment will be traffic and pedestrians on the move. When I did panos the old fashioned way with individual prints, the finished panoramas would often have cars partly cut off at the edge of a frame. Would anyone have any ideas on how to avoid this? To make things more challenging, I'll be shooting several rows within the pano. The only thing I can think of is to wait for a break in the traffic for every single shot but that may be a hard call on a busy street.

    Another alternative would be using a 10 stop ND filter to make passing traffic disappear from the street. Though one possible downside to this is that it would make the whole shooting process significantly longer (due to all the long exposures) and the shadows would move quite a bit from the start of the pano to the end. Plus I don't have a 10 stop ND in my possession.

    I have seen other stitched panoramas shot in cities with traffic clearly in view and they look seamless. I don't see any cars partially cut off or cars / people appearing twice in the completed image. Any ideas on how they achieve this? Would cloning be done? Not keen on cloning in this kind of scenario since it would be pretty time consuming and difficult.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Cindy Flood's Avatar
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    Nov 2007
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    Re: Shooting panoramas with moving subjects?

    I think the long exposure to make people disappear would accomplish it without cloning. Otherwise, cloning would be necessary. During the time that you were exposing one frame, traffic would move and not be in the same spot for the next frame, unless it was parked. I guess you will have to decide to spend the time on shooting or spend the time on cloning. Of course the look will be different with each. Maybe some test shots to decide what fits best with your vision are in order. If you go the cloning route, maybe take a few exposures in each position so that you have more options to work with.

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