Mastering Digital Panoramic Photography Book Review
Mastering Digital Panoramic Photography is a 151-page soft-cover book by Harald Woeste devoted to teaching panoramic photography using any digital camera. The book covers the subject end-to-end though a variety of contextual information and case studies from the author's professional photography.
Covering panoramic photography from its history to its publication in a relatively short book of general interest means that specific details such as how to use panorama software are limited. General topics like the principles of panoramic photography, how to shoot digital panoramas and printing them are covered to reasonable lengths though.
This book is well illustrated with examples and plenty of figures, showing panoramas, panoramic photography, gear, diagrams and even software screenshots. The accompanying text is an easy read and advances fairly quickly from one topic to the next. The case studies are recounts of very specific panoramic photography projects.
Mastering Digital Panoramic Photography is available for purchase from Amazon.
Mastering Digital Panoramic Photography is about exploring the entire topic from its very beginners to modern usage and techniques. Although the word Digital appears in the title, Harald Woeste begins with the history of panoramas which surprisingly started in the 18th century.
The preface of the book is an ideal overview of the book which shows very thoughtful organization in six blocks. The first five blocks each get their own chapter and the sixth takes on the last four chapters, one per case-study. The first chapter, basics includes history lessons, discussion on visual perception and a brilliant explanation of Projections which are essential to rendering panoramas but often misunderstood.
The second chapter is devoted to shooting. This one describes and compares equipment needed to create panoramas as well as how to set and move the camera to capture shots which are most suitable for creating panoramas. Here the book covers in great details different types of panoramic heads and how the compare to each other in practical terms.
The following charpter covers the principles of stitching which gives a thorough understand of what is involved in the process. There is more detail information on projects too, along with wire-frame renderings to visualize how images are distorted to form panoramas. A short chapter on Panorama Software follows. This is the most skimpy chapter in the book with only vague details about each piece of software. They do work rather differently, so putting more software-specific information would make the book require frequent revisions.
There is a quick interlude before the project-oriented charpters. This one showcases beautiful panoramas up to 360° in field-of-view. Some simple long distance shots, interior shots, street panoramas and even the interior of a vehicle. This represent a broad range of what is possible with digital panoramic photography.
The last four chapters cover the detailed workflow of creating a number of panoramas for different commercial purposes. There is a good account of how images were captured, the equipment used, software used and even some post-processing steps along with screenshots of panoramic and image maniupulation software in use. The one disappoiting aspect is that the author describes much more what he did than how. Numbers are often shown in the UI for software but we have no clue as to why these are the required numbers.
Mastering Digital Panoramic Photography is an excellent read for those starting with panoramic photography and those which are struggling with it. What it does extremely well is explain the end-to-end process of creating panoramas. It is easy to appreciate that the author produced custom diagrams to illustrate difficult subjects to grasps such as Projections. After reading the book, it is much easier to understand how the pieces of panoramic photography fit together.
To get started quickly with making your first panorama photo and to learn how modern panorama software compare, visit this panorama photo site. It includes a tutorial and recomendation of state of the art tripods, ball-heads and panoramic heads for most budgets.
Neocamera Blog is a medium for expressing ideas related to digital cameras and photography. Read about digital cameras in the context of technology, media, art and the world. Latest posts links:
Olympus Stylus 1 Review
Premium compact with bright F/2.8 constant aperture stabilized 10.7X wide-angle optical zoom lens. Full manual-controls with dual control-dials, plus a huge 1.15X EVF with 1.4 MP and an Eye-Start sensor. 3-Stop ND-Filter and WiFi built-in.
Canon Rebel SL1 Review
The smallest DSLR yet packs a 18 megapixels APS-C CMOS sensor with hybrid Phase-Detect and Contrast-Detect AF. Captures images at 4 FPS and 1080p HD video.
Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon 2014 Review
The lightest 14" ultra-book features a high-resolution 2560x1440 QHD non-glare display in a carbon-fiber body with illuminated and spill-proof keyboard. WiFi, WiDi, 4G and Gigabit Ethernet all in one sleek design.
Nikon D4s Review
All-new Nikon flagship professional DSLR with a 16 MP sensor capable for ISO 50-409,600, 11 FPS continuous drive for 200 JPEG or 78 RAW, full 1080p HD @ 60 FPS with clean HDMI out, Time-Lapse Video, Interval Timer. Built-in HTTP and FTP servers, plus Gigabit Ethernet and more.
Nikon D3300 Review
The newest entry-level Nikon DSLR features a 24 MP APS-C CMOS sensor without Anti-Alias filter. 5 FPS Drive, full 1080p HD and 11-point Phase-Detect AF in a simple and compact body.
Olympus OM-D E-M1 Review
16 MP Micro Four-Thirds mirrorless without anti-alias filter. Built-in 5-Axis stabilization and 37-point Phase-Detect AF. 10 FPS drive plus full 1080p HD. Freezeproof body with dual control-dials, a 2.4 MP EVF and 3" tilting touchscreen LCD.
Exclusive Fuji Finepix S1 Review
Weather-proof ultra-zoom with 50X optical zoom stabilized along 5 axis. 16 megapixels sensor delivers 10 FPS drive and full 1080p @ 60 FPS video. 3" rotating 920K pixels LCD and 0.2" 920K EVF plus plenty of controls.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Review
World-smallest camera with built-in EVF. Full and direct photographic controls including dual control-dial in a compact body. Packs a 12 MP high-speed CMOS sensor capable of 10 FPS drive and a bright F/2 wide-angle 7X stabilized optical zoom lens.
Fuji X-T1 Review
Weather-sealed and freezeproof mirrorless with 16 MP APS-C Trans CMOS II sensor and EXR II processor. 2.4 MP EVF with 100% coverage and huge 0.77X magnification. Dual control-dials plus a high number of direct controls. 8 FPS drive and full 1080p HD video.
Nikon Df Review
The first retro-style DSLR, featuring a 16 MP full-frame (FX) sensor with incredible ISO 50 to 204,800 range, 5.6 FPS continuous drive with 39-point AF system, a 100% coverage OVF, a high number of mechanical dials plus dual control-dials in a weather-sealed body.