Panorama at Hạ Long Bay

Panorama at Hạ Long Bay

If one photo says more than 1000 words… this panorama would say more than 11000 words!

This picture is in fact a stitched image of 11 separate pictures. The 11 shots were taken on the 22nd of December 2013 on a holiday to Hạ Long Bay in Vietnam.
What a location! Visiting Hạ Long Bay was one of the main reasons to go to Vietnam for me. Therefore I wanted to capture the moment as best as possible. And sometimes one picture in an overwhelming environment as this does no justice to the experience. Consequently, on a trip on a boat between the islands, I took the 11 pictures having in mind to stitch them together in post processing.

The challenge however with a panorama is that the individual pics need to be taken from a single stable position. At least, when you want to have a continuous foreground and sharp overlapping areas. Being on the boat was therefore not the best position. The solution was not to have the foreground in the picture and to have a distant horizon. A 50 mm lens would give me those settings. The boat was not going too fast and the environment forced me to take the pics without a real foreground plus a distant horizon (because of the sizes of the rock formations), so those were the ingredients to take my chances.

In post processing, the stitched image is a 51 megapixel picture. Having 11 pictures, all being 11 megapixel leads to an overlap of about 40 percent. This is also the best overlap you can have for making a panorama because of stitching. Also, the individual shots are taken in portrait mode, not landscape. Because a horizontal panorama will get wide, there is no use to shoot in landscape mode. Shooting in portrait mode gives eventually more footprint in the final composition. Of course, when shooting a vertical panorama, it is consequently relevant to shoot in landscape mode.

The result for me is impressive although for a panorama, 11 pictures might be too wide. Hence, other panorama’s will not be this wide anymore. However, it turned out to be a great impressive photo!

Camera settings:

Camera Model Canon EOS 1100D
Lens model EF50mm f/1.4 USM
Accesoires used None
Exposure 1/2500
F-number 4.00
ISO 100
Focal Length 50 mm



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