Do Panoramic Portraits Really Work?

I did a little more experimenting on my last senior picture shoot.  I was with a great kid that wanted a few pictures in his local basketball gymnasium.  My first thought was “Great, everyone knows how horrible the light is in a gym so I will need to find a way to power through this without too much head on flash”.

Then I walked into this gym.  It was an awesome gym.  It is definitely not your regular gymnasium. It had this beautiful dome roof that I knew I had to incorporate in a shot somehow.  I decided to try it with a handheld pano.

Let’s face it, a hand held pano is not the best way to shoot.  The rules of engagement required me not to bring my tripod in because I am not getting blamed for scratching up a gym floor.  So I decided to try the handheld thing. I figured why not?  It will be fine and I know this kid won’t care if I experiment a little.

We setup right at the entrance to that gym.  I told him to just stand there an pose with the ball.  I did a quick pano and showed him about how it would look.  That was my first mistake!  He loved it! This kid is not real excited about having his picture taken either.

Well, as you can guess, I think it turned out horrible!  The picture is below.  Let’s play a little game and you tell me everything you can find wrong with it.  Leave a comment and rip it apart!

pano senior portrait

Ok, now we have established that we are not happy with this handheld pano, let’s talk about my real problem.  The problem is this kid loves this photo and it is awful.  Sure I can spend hours in Photoshop correcting it, and for him, I probably will, but how could I have done this better?

First, I should have been creative with stabilizing my camera.  Even though I could not use a tripod, I should have found some other way to keep it steady.  This is an area where I almost always come through with a solution, and I let us both down.  Which leads us to…..

Second,  I should have taken this photo more seriously.  I know that seniors want something cool and different, and this was it for this kid!  Now I will spend hours in post processing fixing my mistakes!  Don’t make the same mistakes that I did!

Leave a comment and let’s discuss it.

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  1. Its a nice way to go about the writing mate

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