A New 360 Panorama Example


In my last post, I discussed a 360-degree panorama that I used http://www.jkuula.co to display. In this post, I went a bit further in complexity and used Microsoft’s Image Composite Editor (ICE) to stitch the 34 photos making up the panorama. The steps were basically these.

  1. The images were taken with my DJI Mavic Pro using its automatic Spherical Pan flight mode.
  2. Then each of 34 DNG images were edited in PS CC to improve their brightness/contrast and color with identical settings for each image.
  3. Than the edited images were saved as JPEG files and imported into ICE for stitching to create a spherical projection 6000 pixels wide.
  4. PS CC was used to add additional sky to top of the stitched panorama to get 6000×3000 image. The 2:1 ratio is required by Facebook in order for it to project the final image.  Other projection sites may not have this requirement.
  5. The composite was then converted to a 3D image in PS CC and saved.

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Here is the link to the Panorama as displayed using Kuula.co.

I like the workflow highlighted above, because it allows me to make any desired adjustments to the DNG (RAW) images prior compositing.

Until next time…

 

 

 

Using Okolo.com to Display Mavic 360 Panoramas


In my previous post I should 360 panoramas or panospheres that were shot with my DJI Mavic Pro drone. In this post I will general describe the process using projects generated by http://www.okolo.com.

Remeber, Kuula.co works with pictures that have already been stitched, whereas okolo.com requires the individual images taken by the Mavic to be uploaded. Okolo.com then stitches them and prepares the panospheric projection.

Any photo editing that is desired must first be done to each individual image. In the case of the Mavic Pro 360 Panoramas, that means 34 separate images. Additionally, Okolo.com, only accepts JPEG images.

Even though the Mavic takes both a JPEG and DNG (RAW) images, I generally use the DNG version to hopefully gain the best quality.  Each of the 34 images are 12 megapixels.

The basic steps I used to produce the 360 panorama linked below were to:

  1. Upload the images from the Mavic’s memory card.
  2. Import the thirty-four DNG images into Photoshop CC 2019.
  3. Edit each one with the same settings for color, brightness and contrast.
  4. Save the edited version as a JPEG image required by Okolo.com.
  5. Upload the batch of images to Okolo.com.
  6. Use Okolo.com to create and project the panosphere.

Click Here to view the final panospere on okolo.com. Below is a screen shot from the projection.

Freedom Bell okolo screen shot

So to summarize, I use Kuula.co if I want to quickly project an display a previously stitched set of images as a panosphere. I use okolo.com to start with the individual images and thereby potentially getting a better quality result.

However, there other stitching and projecting panosphere programs and websites I am experimenting with. I will describe those in future posts.

Until next time…

Some Recent Mavic 360 Panoramas Using Kuula.co


My DJI Mavic Pro drone can photograph 360-degree, and 180-degree panorama photos, pretty much automatically. All you do is position the drone from where you want, select the right shot mode, and tap the shutter button. Then in the case of taking a 360-degree panorama, the Mavic takes a series of 34 DNG and 34 JPEG images that will make up the panorama.

That’s the easy part. The JPEG images can be stitched together while you are still flying right in the DJI Go4 app. The resolution and some times the stitching is not as good as you can get by using the images recorded onto the memory card of the drone.

After stitching, the resultant image needs to be projected properly to be viewed as intended. There are Apps that can do this as well as websites. Some are free and others cost. Some of the apps are quite powerful, but can be difficult to use.

One of the most popular types of images posted on Facebook are 360-degree panoramas that you can zoom in on, and scroll around. These are either taken from a drone or 360-degree camera. These cameras can take a 360-degree photo directly – no stitching required.  They use the same apps and websites to project the images. Real estate agents more and more are using these images and videos to provide online virtual tours of new offerings. Many people are also using 360-degree selfies on social media.

I have been taking 360-degree panoramas, which I will call 360-panospheres with my drone for some time. And recently I bought an Insta360 Nano S camera. It takes both high resolution 360-degree images as well as 4K HD 360-degree video.

I am still experimenting with apps and websites that will create the proper projection for viewing. I am still low on the learning curve. I will link to a few of my most recent and early efforts in this post and describe my experiments more thoroughly in future posts.

One of the websites that I have found good for projecting and sharing my pre-stitched panospheres is http://www.kuula.co.

Click on the image below to see one of my recent ones, shot with my Mavic Pro.

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This particular one is from an on-board-stitched panosphere. There are some artifact issues. I expect that once I upload the panosphere that is generated from the RAW images recorded on the Mavic’s memory card, the results will be better. You can also view the kuula.co projected image as a small planet from the same link.

Another Example from Kuula.co

You can even form a collection of images that kuula.co refers to as a tour. Here is a screen shot of an example tour.

kuula collection screenshot

There is a subscription Pro version of Kuula that has even more options. Currently, I generally use kuula.co to project and share my panospheres. However, there are others that I am going to try and share the results I get here. So stay tuned.

If you like reading about my adventures in digital photograhy, please don’t hesitate to comment and share them using the buttons below.

Until next time…

 

Using Photoshop CC to Prepare a Panosphere for Display on Okolo.com


Back in February, I posted an article how I use Okolo.com to display a panosphere. Okolo stitches the uploaded images into a 360-degree panorama or panosphere. In this post, I expand a bit on the earlier one. Okolo does not accept RAW images, which I prefer to take when using its panorama shooting modes. It only accepts JPEG images, and they can only be 5 Mb in size. So other software must be used to edit the RAW images, and then convert and resize them.

This post illustrates my workflow for preparing the 34 RAW images my DJI Mavic Pro takes using Photoshop CC. It goes no to outline the steps to upload them to Okolo.com to create and display the panosphere. I have detailed the steps in the PDF file that is linked below.

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Using PS CC and Okolo to Display 360 Panosphere

The workflow I describe here uses PS CC Action that does the necessary steps to convert and resize each image automatically. It is a simple action, and for the purposes of this post, I have not covered how to write it.

Finally, this can also be done in Photoshop Elements. I will probably write another post soon to better illustrate how to do it with the capabilities that are in Elements. Stay tuned.

If you found this tutorial to be helpful, please star-rate and Like it. And of course, any and all comments are welcome.

Lunada Bay 360 Panorama


https://kuula.co/share/7l30V?fs=1&vr=0&zoom=1&thumbs=1&chromeless=0&logo=0

The above is a link to a 360 degree panorama I took recently with my DJI Mavic Pro drone at Lunada Bay in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA. On this flight, I did not go very high, since it was pretty breezy. The stitching of the 34 images was done in the DJI app I use to control the drone. The projection and display of the panorama is by Kuula.co, a popular website for sharing 360 panoramas.

After stitching, and before uploading to Kuula, I darkened the sky with the NIK Collection plug-in for Photoshop Elements.

I am still experimenting with the ways to upload and share the 360 panoramas. Taking the shots is the easy part and is done automatically by the DJI Go 4 app.

Please leave a comment if you would like to see more 360 degree panoramas.

Until next time…