Monday, November 10, 2008

A perfect match

Pano's that's short for Panorama. I've been a photographer for all my life, longer in fact than I have been riding motorcycles. I remember my first camera back around 1960 I purchased one of those NEW SLR's - a Minolta SR-1 . By first I mean my first "real", quality camera not counting my Kodak Brownie (which I got as a present when I was 8 years old) . Over the years I have belonged to many camera clubs, worked in a photo lab hand developing Black & White, had my own darkroom, enlargers and a camera collection as a previous member of the Western Canada Photographic Historical Association. I have always been interested in panoramic images and currently own several rotating lens panorama film cameras, both in 35mm (24mm x 64mm) and 120 (6x12 format). , as well as several 4x5 field cameras where I am able to shoot both 4x5 (or 6x12). Only recently has digital "caught up" with film in quality and I had been a faithful film user until the end, however I like very large photos so when I am away on a trip I still bring along my Mamiya 7 outfit (6x7 format).
One of the reasons that I mainly shoot digital is cost. With digital there are no film nor developing costs, and you are able to see your results immediately. However for those special scenic pictures I remain a film user.
Saturday started out very stormy with threatening periods of rain, which I could not avoid, but for photos it was the perfect light. Sort of overcast and bright filtered light. The rain has a way of making your images look Crisp.

(Gastown, Gassy Jack Square, Vancouver, BC)

This image was taken early morning. I like the glossy sheen of the road, good for photos, not so good for traction. A few years ago I dabbled with photo-stitching but getting them printed was the challenge. I even purchased a large carriage printer (Canon i9200) so I could do my own by cutting down 20x24 to print 10x24 . Black & white was not a problem as I purchased large trays to handle 12x30 (by cutting 24x30 photo paper). I noticed that on a BLOG that I follow Steve has been posting some panoramic images so I was inspired to produce this:


I was not sure how large of an image Webshots would allow, so I have reduced it a bit. This image was produced using 5 images (landscape mode) with about 30% overlap. If I had wanted a larger image, I would have shot more images in portrait mode, perhaps 8-10 with 20% overlap which would have given me a greater height and adjusted the scaling. It would be very rare indeed to find me without camera. This year I thought that I would learn more about mpeg4 video. I thought that I would be able to do the same "panoramas" but in movie mode, rather than a static picture, so here is the same image in movie mode:

gastown vancouver bc.wmv

So here is a comparison for you: a static panoramic picture, or a panorama done in "movie mode" of the same scene. I think that the conversion process of uploading the WMV reduces the resolution a bit, as the original AVI is smooth. The source video is 480p . Saturday: skootin & photographing, a perfect match .


  1. I am a big fan of panos. It's been amazing to see the breadth of the landscape, whether its a 2 or up to 5 picture pano. This problem is getting them printed. The last place I used produced a 6x31 from Sedona, AZ.

  2. Thanks for the nudge. I need to get serious about my photos. Which, of course, means more education and practice.

  3. If you click on the Pano, and use the + magnifying glass tool, the image will increase in size to larger than your screen, and you can drag it left to right to see the whole image which is about 160 degree view. I took more panos today down at the market.

  4. Hey Bob.

    This is getting weird. I too was into photgraphy, developing and printing my own B&W and Cibachrome prints. I too owned an Alfa Romeo Spyder. Coupled with my love of dark chocolate and double DST, this is too much. (However, I don't have a Corvette!)


  5. Tony:

    we must have grown up in parallel universes. I still have 2 colour processors; one roller transport RCP20, and a JOBO CPP or something like that with 4x5 sheet film drum, as well as 3 enlargers, and tons of chemicals lying around. someday I may do some black and white processing again. I can talk camera talk or car talk with the best of them

  6. Great pictures and video! Vancouver is such a beautiful city, and you have captured it nicely!

  7. Lance:

    I also have a youtube channel.

    You can check out our travels around the PNW (Pacific Northwest). I spend a lot of time doing mpeg4 editing, I started learning earlier this year but it still takes me up to 5 hours to produce a 10 min video. Now I can get back to my panos from the weekend