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My first panoramic camera mount | by Tom.Lechner
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My first panoramic camera mount

I made this mount for my old 2 megapixel Olympus C-700 Ultra-Zoom with a Raynox "wide" angle lens, giving me about a 70 degree spread.

 

I happened to have a wooden 30 sided rhombic triacontahedron lying around that I made a few years before, so I adapted it to hold the camera in its belly. The shape sits on a base only certain ways, making it pretty easy to take 1 photo for each side of the triacontahedron.

 

The graphic novelist and illustrator David Chelsea has a hobby of painting on globes, so this method was designed with the idea of taking reference photos for globe paintings.

 

I wrote a program called Laidout that could take those 30 images, and slap them all down approximately into a net. Then I'd use the Gimp to touch up all 60 edges.

 

May I point out that this was long before I had any concept of automatic stitching software, and even what an "equirectangular image" was. My goal was to have little picture balls to hold in my hand, and I couldn't use Flexify on my platform. One serious problem with this method, other than being really time consuming, was that my little camera would more often than not focus on the mount, rather than the scene itself!

 

I now use a fisheye lens and a much nicer camera more suitable for this kind of photography, but I still think it is far cooler to shoot with a rhombic triacontahedron mount.

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Taken on June 17, 2006