has some amazing pictures that were made by taking a bunch of pics
and stitching them together, similar to the panoramic stitching stuff
included with most modern digital cameras but with an improved
process and tools. (windows shareware, I think)
Here are some sample pics that show roughly how it works:
Here's some of his writeup; the site has many more excellent pics.
> High Resolution Digital Images. All of the images on this site
> have been created by joining two or more individual digital
> camera pictures into one larger composite image. When done well,
> this composite image is completely seamless, and there is no
> indication of where the images have been merged. [...]
> Why go through the exercise of stitching multiple images, when
> one would suffice? One reason is to create a panoramic image --
> one that covers a wider field of view than would be possible with
> a conventional camera lens. However, for me, the most important
> reason is the ability to create big images. Combining 3 or 4
> images from my Nikon 990 digital camera produces a picture with
> the equivalent of 9-12 million pixels -- far more information
> than is captured by a single image produced by any of today's
> consumer-level digital cameras. Combining 9 images from a 5
> megapixel digital camera such as the Minolta DiMage 7 produces
> pictures (such as this one) with over 40 million pixels. By most
> estimates, this is considerably more detail than is captured by a
> good 35mm camera. [...] Because of this detail, these images produce
> excellent prints at sizes of up to 20x30 inches and beyond. In
> contrast, prints of this size from single digital camera images
> typically lack detail and appear soft.
On Fri, Jul 26, 2002, Gerald Oskoboiny wrote:
> This site:
> Max Lyons Digital Image Gallery
> has some amazing pictures that were made by taking a bunch of pics
> and stitching them together, similar to the panoramic stitching stuff
> included with most modern digital cameras but with an improved
> process and tools.
He says he was using panorama factory (indeed shareware) but he switched
to panotools, which is available on many platforms. However, panotools
is everything but easy to use. An easy tool for whom wants to try
stitching would be Canon's photostitch (bundled with -almost?- every
consumer digital camera from Canon). Other tools here: http://www.panoguide.com/software/
In my opinion, the most useful use of image blending is not panorama
stitching, but blending to improve the dynamic range. Slides are
known to have a small dynamic range (Density ~3.2 IIRC), inferior to
that of negative film. What is little known is that the sensors in
digital cameras (especially consumer cameras) have an even lesser
Because of that, the usual trick (basically, underexpose and
post-process, since you can recover underexposed areas but can't recover
blown-up ones) is sometimes not enough to portrait a high-contrast
scene, and this technique comes in handy, and is quite easy to perform
(provided you have a tripod and a camera with manual exposure setting).
Note that these tutorials only show horizontal blending, but (since
software like the gimp are not too bad at oblique gradients, and,
generally speaking, and layer manipulation in general) nothing
stops you from doing more complicated stuff. Kind of a digital "zone
system" in some sense :).
If you feel this is "cheating", you've never seen what they do in "real"
darkrooms. That reminds me of a book where the photographer explains
how to use cardboard and scissors to make miniatures, cover part of the
print with the miniature's (or, sometimes, his hands/fingers) shadow, and
thus blend multiple exposures on a single print...
I'm not good with scissors, I prefer The Gimp. ;)
An interesting thing there, he says that only one raw file is needed. It
looks like it's a compromize as having multiple images taken using
bracketing would give far more dynamic than working only on the same raw.
But I don't know how many camera have this feature.
> darkrooms. That reminds me of a book where the photographer explains
> how to use cardboard and scissors to make miniatures, cover part of the
> print with the miniature's (or, sometimes, his hands/fingers) shadow, and
> thus blend multiple exposures on a single print...
I did it two times with scissors, papers, little cords to have that
hanging in the air slightly to avoid too contrasted marks on the picture,
Quite fun to do, but at the beginning you throw away some papers, which is
not the case using digital pictures (you just eat time).
Re: excellent composited/stitched photos
Ted Guild <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
29 Jul 2002 09:02:35 -0400
> Because of that, the usual trick (basically, underexpose and
> post-process, since you can recover underexposed areas but can't recover
> blown-up ones) is sometimes not enough to portrait a high-contrast
> scene, and this technique comes in handy, and is quite easy to perform
> (provided you have a tripod and a camera with manual exposure setting).
Called "burning and dodging." Where you burn in image - for instance
lighter area with detail that wouldn't be visible otherwise while
dodging (blocking) the rest of the exposure. I use to do this with
back and white.