Recommendation for photo stitching software

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Bryan Henderson, Sep 8, 2004.

  1. I am trying to stitch two photos taken from slightly different viewpoints
    (from a plane) and was wondering what was the best software to use. I have
    downloaded a trial of PanaVue software and wondered if there is anything
    even better than that. TIA for any help.
    Bryan Henderson, Sep 8, 2004
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  2. I use Photoshop for this.
    Open one image. Paste the other onto it so that it goes onto a different
    layer. Set the top layer opacity to 50% so that you can see the bottom
    one through it. Move the top layer until similar features coincide.
    Stretch as necessary. Rub out parts of the overlapping edge with a soft
    edged eraser. Set opacity back to 100% and flatten the image.
    Willy Eckerslyke, Sep 8, 2004
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  3. Bryan Henderson

    Hunt Guest

    I too, use PS for this. One addition to your technique would be to use a Layer
    Mask on the second image Layer. This allows you to "remove" parts of that
    image (with the Layer Mask), without actually removing them. If you
    keep the Layer Mask and Layer locked, you can Transform that Layer and
    have the operation performed on the Layer Mask, as well. Save_As PSD, with all
    Layers (plus any Paths, etc.), then Flatten and Save_As whatever is required.

    Hunt, Sep 8, 2004
  4. I have Corel Photo House - will that have the same function?
    Bryan Henderson, Sep 8, 2004
  5. Bryan Henderson

    Mark Dunn Guest

    I'd concur. Panavue takes ages, Paint Shop Pro was much quicker. Not
    invisible, more like the effect you used to get with a pile of 6x4s and a
    Pritt stick. I prefer it.
    Mark Dunn, Sep 8, 2004
  6. Bryan Henderson

    Mark Dunn Guest

    Thanks Willy. I needed someone to tell me how to use PSP.
    Mark Dunn, Sep 8, 2004
  7. Give it a try and let us know!
    I'm pretty sure that CorelPhotoPaint has pretty advanced layering
    functions. Is that the same package?
    Willy Eckerslyke, Sep 9, 2004
  8. Nice one. Have to admit I've never used the Layer Mask, but will do some
    experimenting with it pronto!
    Willy Eckerslyke, Sep 9, 2004
  9. Bryan Henderson

    Neil Pugh Guest

    Canon have a utility called PhotoStitch which comes with (some at least)
    of their digital cameras. It does all the hard work automatically,
    better than I've ever achieved with Paintshop anyway!

    It may be downloadable from their website.

    Neil Pugh, Sep 9, 2004
  10. Having recently published a short series on 'manual photostitching' in
    Qercus I wonder how some of the 'automatic' systems work? Assuming that you
    can line up, stretch and rotate adjoining sheets correctly - how do you
    automatically modify clouds that have moved, allow for moving cloud shadows
    on the ground, taken account of the exposure differences due to changed
    angle from the sun, &c?
    John Cartmell, Sep 9, 2004
  11. Bryan Henderson

    Des Guest

    You might also want to try the Panorama factory
    I've used it for a while with good results - and far easier than doing it
    manually in Photoshop.

    Works well if the images are roughly in line to start with, but doesn't
    attempt rotations.

    Des, Sep 9, 2004
  12. Bryan Henderson

    Neil Pugh Guest

    Can't answer that one I'm afraid!
    It certainly stretches and distorts the separate images to achieve a
    good join. You end up with a rather strange shaped picture which you
    then crop to a rectangle. I've used it on two pictures of the crater of
    Vesuvius, one the bottom bit and one the crater rim. One of the photos
    was distinctly darker than the other, but the final joined photo has
    been corrected so that the junction between the photos is invisible.
    (Having said that I must admit that the crater of Vesuvius is probably
    an ideal subject for an automatic treatment, being reddish coloured

    That said it works better on some scenes than others, I've tried some
    landscape panoramas that the joins need a bit of work on in an image
    editing program to be acceptable.
    I don't suppose any automatic system would do this. All the images I
    have joined I have shot within a second or so of each other.

    Neil Pugh, Sep 9, 2004
  13. If the sky is bright and there are clouds (or smoke as you mentioned a
    volcano!) then the shadows will move far faster than that. Did you never
    try to race cloud shadows when you were young? ;-)
    John Cartmell, Sep 9, 2004
  14. Bryan Henderson

    Thad Smith Guest

    I don't think they go that far. The nice thing, though, for panoramas
    in which the camera is pivoted, is that correction is done for the
    keystone distortion as the camera is rotated. Each image is transformed
    into one you would see if you used a rotating camera with a slit: a
    straight line, such as a sidewalk appears smoothly curved, which you
    would not get by simply pasting together photos. This helps with
    merging the adjacent photos.

    I believe the stitching program also has a linear stitch mode, which you
    would use if you kept the camera at the same angle and moved either the
    camera or subject linearly, such as photographing a scroll, or the OP's
    aerial view. The aerial view, though, would show change of perspective
    for any objects in relief, such as buildings, trees, or mountains, that
    couldn't be automatically corrected.

    Thad Smith, Sep 10, 2004
  15. There's supposed to be a script or plug-in for The Gimp which helps do
    panorama stitching. Haven't tried it (yet). The Gimp has most of the
    otehr tools you'd need for stretching and masking images and working
    with multiple layers.

    Up until now I've mostly used the panorma making tool which came with my
    Nikon Coolpix. I think it's by arcsoft. On iamges such as countryside
    where there's lots of detail in the middle- to far-distance it often
    does a good job. On anything architectural and especially interiors you
    usually have to help it by telling it what points to match up on each
    image, and even then it often pantses it up. The program's user
    interface is so badly written it's unusable for serious work.
    John Stumbles, Sep 11, 2004
  16. Bryan Henderson

    R Guest

    We use Arcsoft Panorama Maker 3.
    An example can be found here: this is part of our new
    testsite and does not contain any more images.
    It provides us with very high resolution images and can also output the
    results as a Quicktime Movie to scroll and zoom in.
    It's very fast (considering we are using upto 8 images from our 6mp Nikon).
    Feel free to ask any questions about this or our techniques and I'll try to
    R, Oct 11, 2004
  17. Bryan Henderson

    Stephan Guest

    Bad example: your horizon is bent as a banana
    Looks like you cannot tweak your software to correct your lens distortions.
    The best Panorama software is the free PanoTools, (very hard to learn).
    Stitcher from RealViz does miracles but costs a lot

    Stephan, Oct 13, 2004
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