October 28, 2013

15mm oly body cap lens for Panoramas

 
I have been meaning to update my experience with making panoramas and was inspired when I ran across one of Robin Wong's blog posts talking about how one should overcome gear limitations. I think that in the right hands, one can make best of the gear that he/she owns, although admittedly, I do have a bad case of gear acquisition syndrome (G.A.S.). Nevertheless, I brought 3 lenses offshore with me and at this point I kind of have to "work with what I got"... a body cap lens, a 50mm f/1.8 M. Zuiko legacy (nifty fifty), and my "kit" zoom. One of my favorite new techniques is using my $50 body cap to shoot panoramas. I posted about the methodology I use here which I inherited through a suggestion from one of my Flickr contacts who does some pretty amazing panorama work. The idea is to turn your camera longways (portrait style) and pan the scene at 3-4 frames per second (LOW mode on the EM5). Then you use software to stitch all the images together. Pretty simple, you just have to make sure to up the shutter speed to avoid blur. I think the 15mm body cap lens is great for this application because:

A) it provides a VERY cheap alternative to VERY expensive ultra wide angle lenses,
B) has a fixed aperture that allows a very wide DOF (necessary for landscapes),
C) features a fixed focus so there is no lens hunting or out of focus shots,
D) and is light and very compact so when your hiking up that mountain you can have enough room to pack your bear spray.. lol

Some people gripe about the image quality of the BCL, but really, when your presenting a panorama (especially on the web) noone is pixel peeping... its about the image as a whole. 
Here are some examples of the finished product. Again, they were all taken lengthwise at 15mm f/8. I have dedicated a Flickr set to all my BCL panoramas and in case you are interested in EXIF data it can be found here. Thanks for dropping by! Any feedback here, at G+, or on Flickr is greatly appreciated.

-Sam D.  






 
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