The HowToShoot360 project is dedicated to busting myths on creating 360° photos and virtual tours. After reading the articles here you will know how 360° panoramas are created, how to put them together and I will probably turn some of your current notions about them upside down and inside out.
What are the myths I’m trying to bust?
Myth number 1 – 360° photography requires expensive equipment
Not true. You can start with any camera or even phone. You don’t need to have any special equipment. Forget tripods, panoramatic heads, software worth of hundreds of dollars, digital SLRs and fisheye lenses. Yes, great equipment will perhaps make several things easier and will most likely increase the quality of your photos but it’s far more important the basic principles and not be afraid to apply them with whatever is in your hand.
Taken with a cell phone - myth 1 busted:
Myth number 2 – 360° photography requires good knowledge
Not true. It is enough to understand the very basic principle of creating a 360° photo. That is that you simply take a bunch of overlaping photos which you then stitch together into a panorama. All you need to take care about is to take the photos from one spot. Try it right now. Later you can perhaps try to eliminate yourself from a spherical photography to create a really magical immersive experience. Read also: What Camera To Use And How To Shoot Your First Panorama.
This is one of my first panoramas I ever taken. I didn’t know much about panoramic photography and look what a nice result it was - Myth 2 busted:
Myth number 3 – Shooting panoramas and stitching them take a lot of time
Not true. You need approximately 10-30 seconds to take a 360° panorama. You will need anything from 30 seconds to two minutes to take a fully spherical panorama. See the videos in the Introduction to Effective 360° Photography to see how this is done.
Stitching photos together takes some additional minutes – that is if you took the photos correctly. I have personally met many photographers who had been struggling with their workflow and took a very long time to stitch photos only to realize they were doing something wrong in the process which increased the time significantly. It is always more enjoyable to spend your time out there shooting photos than in the office working on a computer. And of course, exceptions apply. There are always cases in professional projects where you will need to spend hours, days or weeks with one photo – and that’s a good problem to have when someone is paying you for it :)
Myth 3 busted.
Stay tuned for the rest of the myths. I will cover the myths 4 to 6 in the upcoming article in the Introduction to Effective 360° Photography series.