Do you want to shoot sharp blue hour panorama?
There is something about a panorama that is so interesting. I really love shooting panoramas. It seems to me that landscape photography is synonymous with panorama. Do you agree?
Shooting a sharp panorama from a Floating Quay at dawn.
Last year I came to this place after the fall color season was over. Most leafs were already fallen and the resulting image was nice but… I knew that this year I could do better. However, there is a big challenge! The floating quay is… floating. Just breathing does make the quay moves a little and atop the tripod the movement is amplified. How can I shoot a sharp panorama at dawn?
Getting sharp picture at 1/10 of a second at a focal length of 76mm (ISO 400 and f/5,6) 4 times in a row just before sunrise requires attention to every details. On a floating quay it is a daunting task.[bctt tweet=”How to Shoot a #Landscape #Panorama from a Floating Quay – #leafpeepers #photography”]
Making the shot
Here how to shoot a Sharp Panorama from a Floating Quay in these conditions:
- Put the tripod at the lowest height considering the desired composition for the shot. This help reduces the sway amplitude;
- Change the tripod leg height in order for the top of the tripod to be perfectly leveled;
- Consider to use a parallax kit to avoid parallax errors associated with panning. Here is my Parallax kit. This is one of the few options working with an Arca Swiss L-Bracket:
|Long Handle Disk Clamp Arca Swiss Compatible||Sunwayfoto DDY-64iL|
|Indexing Rotator Tripod Head||Sunwayfoto DDP-64M|
|Induro Arca Swiss Quick Release Plate||Induro PU-50|
|Sunway 200mm Plate Rail Arca compatible||Sunwayfoto DPG-210|
|Bidirectional 90° Offset Double Clamp Arca compatible||Sunwayfoto DDB-53|
- Put the camera in Portrait mode using a L-Bracket. Not only the L-Bracket enables mounting the camera in portrait mode, it is also a great protection in case of a mistake. Without an L-Bracket it is very hard to mount the camera in such a way to avoid parallax errors.
- Set the Rotator to achieve, at least, one third overlap in your panorama pictures. In this case I selected 10 degrees. The focal length I used gave just under 20 degrees in portrait mode. This allowed for a nice overlap. While operating the parallax kit, we can feel each step using the Sunwayfoto Indexing Rotator. No more guessing.
- Adjust the quick release plate in the groove of the disk clamp in order for the nodal point to be just over the tripod axis.
- Set the camera in Panorama mode:
- self-timer to 10 seconds;
- Choose your exposure manually (ISO, Shutter Speed, Aperture);
- Set your white balance to the appropriate value (do not use Auto White Balance);
- Set focus manually using live view.
- When ready to press the shutter:
- Position yourself like a tripod by extending lightly your two legs and installing yourself in a corner of the Quay resting on the armrests.
- Let the sway stop;
- Press the shutter using the 10 seconds delay;
- Gently put your hand back on the armrest of the quay.
- Review the shot using the magnifier making sure it is tack sharp and take another one if this is a miss;
- Rotate the camera on its axis and start over again.
On this early morning I found the sky colors to be interesting. The blue and pink of the sky created a contrast with the warm colors of the landscape. Usually the colors are more interesting just after the sunrise. All in all, I do prefer the Blue Hour Panorama to the Golden Hour one. On this same morning I had my new Lifepixel Converted Infrared Camera. Using the same setting and lens, I shot the same panorama using the Infrared option. This give a very different look to the same scene.
In conclusion: Sharp Blue Hour Panorama is possible.
You might have to go back a few time if it is windy to achieve a tack sharp panorama like this one. On a floating quay, wind is certainly the worst enemy of the photographer.
Now, I need you to vote for one of the included pictures. Which one do you prefer?
- Blue Hour;
- Golden Hour;
- Black & White Infrared;
I can wait to know your opinion on these. It is time to vote! Use the comment option to cast your vote.