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DPChallenge Forums >> Current Challenge >> An Uphill Sh'Lepp with this Panorama thing
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01/12/2016 04:03:21 PM · #1
OK, so all I've been able to find about George Lepp and his technique is that he will charge me money to learn it, and there's a photo of a butterfly wing on his website that is comprised of over 1400 individual focus-stacked and stitched images. I can pretty much figure out something to do for this, but are there any other examples or resources that we can check out for this technique?
01/12/2016 04:10:19 PM · #2
What I could find (free) about his macro photography seemed to focus on (pun intended) focus-stacking -- I found no reference to stitching macros into panoramics ... I found some nice articles from Outdoor Photographer, but nothing really helpful for this challenge.
01/12/2016 04:26:54 PM · #3
I looked at Outdoor Photographer too and certainly plan to look at some of his articles when I've got time, but I'm lost when it comes to this challenge. I enjoy macro photography, but I'm not sure I'll be able to enter this one.
01/12/2016 04:36:04 PM · #4
maybe i am misunderstanding the challenge (quite possible!), but why can't you just apply the same techniques you use for landscape panoramas, just start with multiple macro or other up close photos? you'll just be showing more areal coverage of the tiny subject, as opposed to just showing the eye or wing, for example.
01/12/2016 04:36:36 PM · #5
I plan on doing a little more research on this when I get home this evening... for true macro photography, what you would essentially do is to fix the camera position and slide the subject past the lens, maintaining the same subject distance, and thus magnification. The images should then stitch pretty well. It's different than standard panoramas, where the camera is rotated around the entrance pupil. Works only for relatively "planar" subject matter.

ETA: Here is a short article on his techniques, not all of which involve macro.

OK, that's a dead end too... subscription required.

Message edited by author 2016-01-12 16:46:17.
01/12/2016 04:46:19 PM · #6
You're not misunderstanding at all. It's just that when the challenge description starts with, "George Lepp has written a number of articles on the use of panoramic techniques in closeup work", I would have thought that these things would be a little more ubiquitous. I can certainly do something based only on the rest of the description, and that was my plan, but when a person's name is part of the description then I tend to do a little digging to find out what that person's work actually is.
01/12/2016 05:09:00 PM · #7
First thing I thought of was focus stacking macros. Whether your camera moves or your subject moves shouldnt be relevant.
01/12/2016 05:11:47 PM · #8
Originally posted by backdoorhippie:

...there's a photo of a butterfly wing on his website that is comprised of over 1400 individual focus-stacked and stitched images...


And advanced editing rules allows us to use only a maximum of 10..?
01/12/2016 05:43:00 PM · #9
It seems to me if you want to score well you'd best ignore the focus-stacking aspect of Lepp's work and concentrate on close-up panoramas. It's a fascinating idea, let your imagination run riot.
01/12/2016 06:51:35 PM · #10
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I was trying the panorama setting on my camera on a bunch of stuff. Some had no horizon. This is one macro I got. The camera did have some trouble with it, but I liked the results.
01/12/2016 06:53:51 PM · #11
So, close up doesn't necessarily mean "macro"..., right?
01/12/2016 07:10:40 PM · #12
Originally posted by tanguera:

So, close up doesn't necessarily mean "macro"..., right?


Challenge description: " Photograph a subject close up or macro, but make sure we have a wide, panoramic perspective of the subject/context/scene."

So... as long as it's not room or a building or a landscape kinda thing...but... an object or animal... that's smallish... I think you'll be fine.

01/12/2016 07:50:19 PM · #13
Originally posted by pixelpig:

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I was trying the panorama setting on my camera on a bunch of stuff. Some had no horizon. This is one macro I got. The camera did have some trouble with it, but I liked the results.


Are we even allowed to use our camera's panorama feature? I seem to remember it being nonoed for advanced.
01/12/2016 07:55:24 PM · #14
And no special rule to allow larger dimensions for the panorama? I'm a little surprised. We are going to have some very short entries..
01/12/2016 08:37:04 PM · #15
There are a couple in his tulips gallery that are examples, this is the best one.

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Message edited by tanguera - reduced image size.
01/12/2016 08:41:26 PM · #16
Originally posted by jomari:

Originally posted by pixelpig:

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I was trying the panorama setting on my camera on a bunch of stuff. Some had no horizon. This is one macro I got. The camera did have some trouble with it, but I liked the results.

Are we even allowed to use our camera's panorama feature? I seem to remember it being nonoed for advanced.

It'll be fine as long as the assembled in-camera pano has EXIF data, which most of them do these days. I couldn't tell you which ones DON'T, though, there's a heck of a lot of cameras out there :-(
01/13/2016 05:51:32 PM · #17
Originally posted by Mond:

Originally posted by backdoorhippie:

...there's a photo of a butterfly wing on his website that is comprised of over 1400 individual focus-stacked and stitched images...


And advanced editing rules allows us to use only a maximum of 10..?


While this has not been asked specifically, are we limited to 10 images in our panorama or can we do more? Typically the 10 images were meant to either be focus stacked or serve as input to an HDR process, so if that's the case and I recall the last Pano challenge, are we only limited to 10 images per pano frame (focus stacked/HDR) with an unlimited number of total frames in the composite?
01/13/2016 08:05:22 PM · #18
[quote=FromDaRock] There are a couple in his tulips gallery that are examples, this is the best one.

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I hadn't seen this one... only the butterfly 1400 images one.

This makes me hopeful.

I see now that the image can be of a large area... but macro detail.

I get it now. Thanks!

Message edited by tanguera - reduced image size.
01/13/2016 09:40:39 PM · #19
Lydia, pic too wide. You a breakin this place.
Fwiw: I would like to see challenges like this one suggested on the Challenge Suggestion thread so that we members can discuss them, yea/nay them, and get used to the idea, instead of them being snuck in the back door.
01/14/2016 07:00:12 AM · #20
The thing about the tulip shot is that it could easily have been taken with a sharp lens and high resolution camera in a single shot then cropped to look like this. Yes, in a gallery print situation it might be breathtaking, but at 1200px wide it looks more close crop - nothing panoramic about it.

Funny, his watermark looks almost exactly like the one I was using in 2014, just swap names.

Message edited by author 2016-01-14 07:01:52.
01/14/2016 07:20:04 AM · #21
Originally posted by backdoorhippie:

The thing about the tulip shot is...at 1200px wide it looks more close crop - nothing panoramic about it...

I'm curious what you mean because I don't get it. Please say more.
01/14/2016 08:47:51 AM · #22
Originally posted by pixelpig:

Originally posted by backdoorhippie:

The thing about the tulip shot is...at 1200px wide it looks more close crop - nothing panoramic about it...

I'm curious what you mean because I don't get it. Please say more.


Not that this is a perfect example photo but I could easily enter something like this...

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...even though it was simply a crop of a single frame...

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...and not constructed as an actual panorama.

The only way to tell whether it was an actual panorama or not would be to view it at full resolution, and even then a single image from a 36MP D810 which shoots at over 7000px wide could replicate in a crop what an older 8MP camera would need 5 frames to achieve.

Message edited by author 2016-01-14 08:50:10.
01/14/2016 09:24:20 AM · #23
Let me see if I have this right, then. If I have a 10 megapixel camera & I take 10 shots with it, I could put them together into a 20x500 or 100 megapixel panorama. To crop the same thing I need a very high resolution camera.

If I take 100 1:1 macro shots at 10 megapixels, I could end up with a 1000 megapixel panorama. A butterfly wing on a 4x4 ft print in a gallery would be pretty cool.

To submit the pano to this challenge I have to make it fit 1200 pixel/700kb requirements.

How do I, when voting, tell the difference between that pano & the one I can take with the pano function on my camera which gives me 3.xx mb jpeg?

I intend to vote that challenge & I want to know what, if anything, to look for. Any hints for me?
01/14/2016 09:49:33 AM · #24
I can't verify the math of it, and that wasn't my initial point, so perhaps I went down the wrong rabbit hole.

What I'm trying to say is that with pretty much any camera you can compose a single photo in a way that would allow you to crop it so that when viewed on this site there is no way to tell whether it is a crop of a single frame or a Lepp-style panorama. At 1200px, or even at the resolution on his website, Lepp's moth wing photo composed of over 1400 frames is indistinguishable to me from an ultra sharp, single frame, high-res macro shot resized for the web. At full resolution I'm sure it's impressive as heck, but on a computer screen it's just a really sharp photo.

With that in mind I have no tips for you to help figure out if it is or isn't a pano provided that the pano is well shot and constructed. A real stitch vs. a phone stitch has a lot to do with how good the phone app is and what the light conditions are as in my experience you can get variations in luminosity on phone apps particularly outdoors.

01/14/2016 10:02:43 AM · #25
OK, I did a bunch of digging I think the inclusion of Lepp's name in the description with the idea of "Close Up" confuses things. Lepp's work seems to rely more on using long lenses and lots and lots of images to create panoramic vistas that can be drilled into at amazing detail (i.e. GigaPan shots), and not so much on getting physically close to you subject and making a panorama of it - which is what the challenge description implies.

I'll be shooting for the description and not the GigaPan concept, though that sounds interesting as heck.

Message edited by author 2016-01-14 10:03:08.
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