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Tree n Field

By ctxuk  
I decided to take my S3Pro shopping with me today, along with my tripod. En route I stopped and shot a series of frames using the Sigma 500mm f7.2 APO set to the stop between f11 and f16 (f13?). The intention to produce a stitched landscape of around 14 frames or so. I ended up with 15 frames and missed one on the top right so the image is a frame smaller than intended. I shot the series 4 accross middle, 4 bottom and then 4 top, or so i thought.
I loaded the raw files into layers in PS and auto aligned and auto blend'ed, that failed abysmally with a second image of the rooftop bottom right so I hand aligned them all and then press auto align which then assembled the files correctly. Auto blend then made some areas transparent and then patched the area with content aware automatically. I got around that by revealing the area on the mask it had produced and putting it above that offending area on a duplicate layer. I combined all layers, duplicated it and put it through camera raw to process it.
I did some final editing in PS and cropped the edges.
I am pretty sure one frame was very slightly unfocused in comparison to the next one although I do have another frame which is fine but refused to line up for some reason.

Just looking for general thoughts, nothing really specific. It was more an exercise in seeing what it produced at its further reaches of the lens and if it is possible to stitch a panorama with it or not in regards edge sharpness and distortion.

Tags: Landscape Field Woodland Farm Stitched image Landscape and travel Panorama landscape Stitched panorama

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dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1841 England
16 Feb 2021 8:14AM
I have to admit that it's not a technical exercise that I'd have attempted, but you have stitched the images together so that the joins aren't obvious. You now know that you can do this if a picture requires it in future: I'm guessing that this brings you a good deal of satisfaction, and that is good.

There is always a risk in an exercise like this (which doesn't go away when you use the technique in anger, so to speak): that you forget to check the basics. In this case, the image was rather dark, and lacking in contrast, which may be partly because of the lens, and also partly because of the weather when you took the images.

For this sort of image, it's important that both exposure and focus are consistent between frames - white balance, too. This makes using manual settings for all of these important - I know that you do this as a matter of routine, but most of us don't, and we need to change our approach for such shots. And, of course, it's important to avoid accidental changes to any of the settings!

You mention edge sharpness - of course, the edges of the stitched frame will reflect edge sharpness of the lens - as may bands across and up and down the frame, depending on the degree of overlap that you used - so an important question for you - how much overlap was there between adjacent frames? I believe that around 1/3 on each edge is considered normal.
Robert51 12 7 121 United Kingdom
16 Feb 2021 8:15AM
First can I say what a great shot. It captures everything about a scene like this that you would want.

The mod is a little sharpening, noise reduction and some colour toning. I then added a reflective gradient across the middle to help light the farm. A final curves layer to brighten the whole image. Hope you like it...
chase Plus
15 2.1k 562 England
16 Feb 2021 10:04AM
Stitching looks ok to me so well done there, I think John is right about how much overlap you need between frames, a really important point.
This does look a little flat tbh so I did a mod where I increased contrast, added a levels layer and brightened things up.
I did straighten, using the top of the building on the right as a marker point.
I don't find this particularly sharp as it is, I ended up applying a sharpening layer which looked a little better.
I warmed the whole thing up using theCamera Raw filter.
Converted to sRGB which is the one recommended for display on the web.

Not quite sure why such a long lens though, maybe that was the one attached to the camera at the time ? Maybe that's not the sharpest lens in your arsenal ?

I do like the scene you have captured here, just needs a few tweaks to make it pop a bit more.
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.8k 2404 United Kingdom
16 Feb 2021 12:08PM

Quote:Not quite sure why such a long lens though, maybe that was the one attached to the camera at the time ? Maybe that's not the sharpest lens in your arsenal ?

This does seem to be a technical exercise, a skill practised, and as such you've done pretty well. Composition-wise, I'd like to see less space on the left, more on the right, I can't help feeling that moving in closer for a single wider angle frame, cropped to exclude sky, would most probably give a better quality image.
dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 768 England
16 Feb 2021 12:09PM
There's nothing wrong in using a long lens for stitching.
And yes, be prepared to adjust the processing parameters especially when tiling.

Ensuring good overlap is key, and as John mentions 1/3 is the accepted standard though there's no readon why tou can't try 1/2.
However, using Manual focus, exposure and white balance is important to ensure consistency across all frames and make the stitch a) easier for the software to handle and b) because of that, avoiding mismatches in the final image. Any processing of the images prior to stiching needs to be the same for every image.

You've ended up with a fair winter scene but it's cold and flat - Robert's mod, for example, adds the much needed contrast and vibrance. Much the same 'finishing touches' you'd expect to make on any landscape.
ctxuk Plus
11 7 2 England
16 Feb 2021 1:07PM
Thank you for the replies from you all, I will try and respond with non directive answers

sRGB - error on my own part, i wondered for a moment thinking ACR is set to save as sRGB so why is it in Adobe RGB. Then I realised, I opened the set in layers into PS directly. It never occurred to me to check.

Focus - Looking at it after stitching it and in here, I can see focus wandered on a couple of places. I have done various panorama's in the past, some bigger than this one and I cannot recall once setting the initial focus ever altering it, I tried the same here too. Perhaps I moved it slightly in panning around to do each frame. I find it annoying and something to redo focusing for each frame individually, it ought to be sharp.

Dark - I prefer darker images although I suspect that issue lays with Adobe RGB. I put the stitched image through ACR and set the end stops but had to back the white off as it blew out in the chimney shroud white tops, maybe I should have left it that way. I did do some work to brighten the image though.

Quote:Composition-wise, I'd like to see less space on the left, more on the right, I can't help feeling that moving in closer for a single wider angle frame, cropped to exclude sky
- The missing frame far right top prevented me doing just that as originally intended, that said I would just have extended the right side leaving the left hand side as this.I did not shoot to include the sky in the framing and it was flat and dull. As to the single wide angle image, it is something I pondered after completing the image. On a plus side though, I didn't get my boots caked in mud and I wasn't trespassing or intruding on their privacy being right up close.

Frame Overlap - At least a third on the frames, some were more perhaps.

Quote:Not quite sure why such a long lens though, maybe that was the one attached to the camera at the time ? Maybe that's not the sharpest lens in your arsenal ?
- I have the lens, it will not bring much if I was to resell it on and would also no doubt be difficult to shift being a max of f7.2. I made an error in it's purchase hoping it would not be as bad as it is in the viewfinder. So, now I wish to find what it is useful for, or perhaps, what it can achieve coupled to my own expectations and the expectations of others.

WB setting - Ironically I never set a custom WB, something I almost always do. Many say the S3Pro images direct ooc are fantastic (although I have it set on raw) so it was an exercise in that also. I chose that body in preference to using the S5Pro.

I have other stitched images which came out very well, for instance Gloucester Docks for the Tall Ships at night which is extremely large (300 f4) or Bristol Cathedral exterior - handheld for this one with a shorter lens. Google+ displayed both well in full size (a shame its no longer around) but they are on my flickr.
Unfortunately I was unaware that it was incapable of being enlarged in this site when posting this image.

My biggest criticism of the image is the sharpness to some frames compared to others. I expected it to remain sharp in honesty and the focus to not shift. I know the focus ring does shift somewhat too easily but no way as far as I am aware to easily sort that out which would prevent any slippage.

Quote:You've ended up with a fair winter scene but it's cold and flat
- you make that sound an accurate portrayal then, thank you!
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
16 Feb 2021 1:37PM
As an exercise in technicality, I can't better the advice above (even if I remembered what most of it actually meant!).

However, while the technical side of the image is fascinating, my brain automatically wants to play with the image and make it something else. So that's what I've done in my mod.

I took the image and created a duplicate layer. Then I adjusted the Levels and applied a small amount of Oil Paint filter, just to give it a feeling of unreality. Then I applied a High Contrast Red Photo Filter @ 40% opacity, and on top of that a FoggyNight Color Lookup effect, using a Multiply blend mode and at a 75% opacity. (I'll be honest and say that this was inspired by a picture I found recently in my dad's loft, which was from Singapore and was a mono painted scene in a simple white frame. I remembered it from when I was a kid, and there's something ethereally beautiful and simple about it, and I wanted to try and capture that same feeling here if I could.) Then I flattened the whole layer stack and increased the canvas size by 1" all round, then added a border.

You may not like it. In fact, you may hate it. And that's absolutely fine Smile But as a scene, it offers so much in many ways and doesn't just have to be a technical exercise!
ctxuk Plus
11 7 2 England
16 Feb 2021 1:48PM
I added a version, its a combination of both the previous upload and how it should have looked in sRGB. I have though set the white and black points again to where I originally had them prior to pulling back for the blown chimney tops.
I put the original along with it so both display at once.
Also uploading a version 2 with just the full size sRGB.
ctxuk Plus
11 7 2 England
16 Feb 2021 2:08PM
Hello TanyaH

Fractalius at a guess. It has been quite awhile since I did any filter work at all art wise.Love or Hate isn't for me what it is about in honesty as I used to do a lot of filter and photo manipulation stuff in the distant past.

The image though for me was an exercise in examining the usefulness of a particular lens own. Trying to find a reason for its existence in my collection.
Still, at least your having fun and offering an alternative.

TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
16 Feb 2021 2:34PM
Fractalius? Nope, never had it. Photoshop Smile I love to play, although I have been known to do serious photography in the past. Learnt on old manual cameras back in the day and then moved to digital. Found Photoshop and a few other programmes. Found a creative groove. Found that I love to create art rather than straight imagery Grin

But hey - if we were all the same, this site would be boring as anything!!
ctxuk Plus
11 7 2 England
16 Feb 2021 7:47PM
Hello TanyaH

Knows of old of you love to play, I can hardly forget one comment left by you "Well, as the only 'cap' I know of isn't to do with photography in the slightest and more to do with ... err ... 'lady things' ... then I haven't got the foggiest what you're actually talking about with that one, so I'm not even going there Smile". - I still laugh at that to this day, humour is essential. The subject was WB Caps by Mennon, something until then unknown to you apparently.

Photography means differing things to people, imo it is an Art although Artists would be horrified perhaps at that. It is a set of skills you learn and improve with time and effort and depends on many Artistic abilities to be of a standard more than a snapper. I enjoyed looking through part of your gallery today and before. You have a Dali'esque train of thought/inspiration in some images it would seem, as to others I wonder if you were the model behind the veil, and if the poetry on others your own. I did enjoy the gallery though ty.

I uploaded a couple of my own to my gallery in the 'art n mods' folder. Artistically inspired using my own photography with some outside photography also. Poetry mine, I tend to construct some and just write others. Rare I do mod or art stuff these days as spend less time on the social sites.

And, if we were all the same, then there would only be one photo on the site, with many copies Wink
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
17 Feb 2021 2:05PM
Ah, you've got a better memory than me then, Martyn! Although that's definitely something I'd say *cough* Blush
Any poetry on my images is normally my own rubbish, I'm afraid. Normally, if I use someone else's words to illustrate something, I'll always acknowledge it.

And no, it's not me behind the veil. Sadly Wink

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