Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Capture The Gigascape
The GigaPan EPIC Pro creates the ultimate combination of camera technique and computer power for incredibly large, high-res images
The "No Free Lunch" Clause
If you've been to my seminars, you know I'm fond of the term "No free lunch" to represent all the things that are imperfect about the photographic process. It applies here, big time. First, you must work in a concentrated, methodical way to achieve success with the GigaPan, especially when you expand into areas such as HDR and extended depth of field. Second, you must make sure that nothing in your entire range of capture moves during all of the sequences. Since that's usually not possible outside of the studio, be prepared to photograph (at exactly the same focal length of the original) individual areas or subjects within the scene and drop them into the final image later. Think about it. You can have fun with this aspect.
There are a few add-ons you'll need if you're going to do this in a serious way. The mounting platform that currently comes with the GigaPan isn't quite up to the task. Order the GigaPan Clamp Bar from Really Right Stuff to provide a more stable base for a big camera/lens combo. And since the robot itself is a fairly large piece of gear, it's helpful to carry it in its own case along with an extra battery and a lens and camera. Finally, when it gets to the processing, you're going to need up-to-date software and hardware to manage and store all those gigs.
Perhaps the most difficult aspect of giga-photography is finding a worthy subject. A boring picture doesn't improve with size and detail! So before you engage in GigaPanning, get out there and mine for subjects that are pure gold.
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