May 202009
 

A panorama is when you have several individual photos taken in succession of a scene – usually a landscape – and you create one picture by connecting and overlapping the individual photos. So, for example, I took the 4 pictures below with the intent of putting them together into one panorama.

panorama

Picasa does not have a Panorama feature, but you can approximate the result by using the collage feature. Select all 4 photos and click the collage button, size them and position them overlapping each other to make them look like one. If one is darker than the others, you can right click on it and choose View and Edit. This takes you to the editing tools, where you can use the fill Light slider to lighten up the picture. (Member Tutorial Video:Basic Edits) Then just click on the collage tab to get back. To bring one photo on top, right-click on it and then choose ‘Bring to Top.’

Click the Create collage button and you now have one picture that is a composite of the original 4. Crop it so the edges are straight and you have something like this: (Member Tutorial Video: Crop Size Options)

panorama2

Notice that the seams between the original photos are pretty obvious. And, there’s not much you can do about this. If you want to do a lot of panoramas, this is an area where it may be worthwhile to use another software. I have a Canon camera and it came with software called ‘PhotoStitch.’ After simply selecting the pictures and setting their order, below is what I get with Photostitch. It’s really quite amazing how it perfectly aligns the photos and blends the intersection lines.

panorama3

You can save this panorama in your My Pictures folder and Picasa will then treat it like any other picture.

If you have a Canon camera, you probably already have Photostitch – it works with both Windows and Macintosh. If not, and you’re on the Windows platform, you can download Windows Live Photo Gallery – this is a download, not the Gallery that comes with Vista. It makes panoramas as easy as 1-2-3. 1)select the photos, 2) click Make – Create Panoramic Photo and 3:Save. The saved photo is now in My Pictures and can be managed by Picasa right along with all your other photos.

The problem with Live Photo Gallery is that it is a full featured photo management tool like Picasa and it may get confusing having both of them on your computer.

One other free download is Hugin. Available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. There is a good article all about it with additional tips on making panoramas at Lifehacker.

I am usually not a proponent of Picasa adding features. One of its strengths is that it doesn’t do it all – so what it does do is nice and fast. I like software that is lean and mean. But, when it comes to Panoramas, I’m hoping that this could be added to Picasa without losing any performance. We’ll see, Google adds new features all the time.

This tip brought to you by Geeks on Tour

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  8 Responses to “Picasa Tip:Making a Panorama”

  1. I’m wanting to know if Picasa or Dropbox or some other place will let me VIEW a panorama in large size and pan/scan back and forth like I can with Dermander on my iPhone.

    JIM

  2. Another option is to use a free online tool called Dermandar http://dermandar.com/create.php .It is fully automatic, so you only have to select your pictures and click once.

  3. Another good free option for creating Panorama is autostich. Is very easy to use, and produces great results too! You can even create Panorama in two dimensions!

    http://cvlab.epfl.ch/~brown/autostitch/autostitch.html

  4. Thanks Chris. I still don’t like it but I guess I’ll have to live with it.

  5. Another great Picasa idea. Thanks! I’ve been using Picasa since you introduced me to it at Thousand Trails Peace River and now my wife is using it also. Several weeks ago I developed an unrelated problem which I’m hoping you can address. When I click on “Sharpen,” I have a longer than usual delay and then the curser sits close to the left side rather than in the middle. Trying to move it is virtually impossible and when I do and click “apply” the sharpen tool does not seem to have any effect on the photo. Oddly the same problem has recently developed on my wife’s computer. Is there a solution short of reinstalling Picasa and if I do what happen to my photos?

    • Yes, something has changed about how Picasa does sharpen. They tell us that it does still work, but it is lots slower, and you only see the results if you’re looking at the picture in full size – use the 1:1 button. Here is the official word from Google about the Sharpen issues: link

      When they changed the way sharpen works, they gave us a way to do sharpen like before … hold down the shift key as you click Sharpen and it will respond the old way.

  6. Congratulations on the new site, you have done an outstanding job in the past and I am sure you folks will continue to do so in the future!

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