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Panoramic Photos from Video Sweep

Nikon cameras have introduced a nifty feature in their point-and-shoot cameras allowing you to create a panoramic image from a video clip that sweeps across a subject.. You can create the same effect from a video clip with Photoshop Extended. Here’s how.

1) Open your video clip into Photoshop Extended (CS3 & later) and open the Animation panel (Window>Animation).

2) Adjust the Work area start and end to trim any extraneous frames from the beginning or end of the clip. Although this step isn’t strictly necessary, it will save you processing time.

3) From the Animation flyout menu, select Document Settings and set your frame rate to 1 frame per second.

4) Return to the Animation flyout menu and select Flatten Frames to Layers. This creates a separate layer for each frame in your video clip.

5) In the Layers panel, select the layers by clicking on the top layer in the stack and Shift-clicking to select the last layer. (Ignore the video layer at the bottom of the stack).

6) Align the images in the panorama using the Edit>Auto Align Layers command. The Auto alignment option works well for most images. If you’ve created a 360-degree panorama, be sure to select the Spherical option.

Note: Depending upon the speed of your computer and the number of images in your panorama, this process can take a long time. If it’s taking exceptionally long, make sure you’ve dropped your frame rate from 30 fps to 1 fps (step 3) and have trimmed the ends of your project (Step 2).

7) To blend the images together, either flatten the document or select Edit>Auto-Blend Layers. When using the Auto-Blend Layers commend be sure the Panorama option is checked.


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