Friday, January 9, 2009

Spherical Panoramas

If you’re a visual person, and you haven’t yet experienced a spherical panorama, you’re in for a treat. It's also called Quicktime VR or QTVR.

A spherical panorama is a photographic representation of the full 360-degree field of vision. Using a special camera apparatus and a photo-stitching technique, an array of photos taken from a single point of observation are seamlessly mapped across the surface of a sphere or cube surrounding the viewer.

The photo above is really just a flattened cylindrical panorama, because it's just as hard to convey a spherical panorama in one illustration as it is to show a map of the globe on a flat piece of paper.

Using a special plugin from QuickTime (resident on a Mac, and downloadable for other computers), you can control your direction of view, and in some cases, you can zoom closer to any given region of the picture.

A good place to start is the website “spherical panoramas” Link.
You can also find various images on “Fullscreen Quicktime Virtual Reality” Link.
Quicktime site: link.


Dan Gurney said...

Is this the technology that Google Maps is using to show what street scapes look like?

Super Villain said...

yes this technology was really cool.....five years ago, HAHA! where have you been bro? HAHA!

Super Villain said...

yes i think this is the same technology used in street scapes on google maps,

real estate agents also use this technology to give virtual tours of a home over the internet, pertty cool.

i would love to see a virtual tour of your studio james! that would be awsome!

James Gurney said...

Super-Wu: Oops, I guess I'm behind the times! Most of the information in this blog is more than 150 years old, so if something is 5 years old, it's hot off the press, as far as I'm concerned.

Not sure if I'm ready for a spherical panorama of my studio until I get around to cleaning it up.

J M said...

There is a low-tech alternative to this kind of panorama: a collage with many photos, David Hockney-style. I love the results of these compositions, with multiple vantage points, overlaps and empty areas and all.
I'm even more technology - outdated than James...

Niya said...

Great stuff!
Keep posting!!!

panoramic photo stitching