Monday, November 23, 2009

Create Panoramic Photos in Photoshop

Merging multiple photographs into a single large panoramic photo can yield excellent results and with the proper software it can turn your small sensor camera into a 30 megapixel digital camera.

Adobe Photoshop CS4 has an excellent Photomerge feature that automates the tedious process of lining up and merging multiple photos into a single larger photograph. Below is the procedure for merging multiple photos into a single panoramic photograph in Adobe Photoshop CS4.

1) Open Photoshop and select "File" and then "Automate" followed finally by "Photomerge.

2) Next you will be greeted by a dialog box with several options. The Layout options give you many choices in how the final outputted file will appear. For good results I usually leave it on "Auto" and let Photoshop decide, this usually gives me decent results, but feel free to experiment with all the options here.

3) After you have selected your layout you need to select the source files. Select the browse button and navigate to the folder where the individual photos for your panoramic photo are stored. Now since you are merging multiple photos you can highlight or select all the photos at once and Photoshop will add all of them to the source files list.

4) Once your source files have been selected hit "OK" and sit back and wait for Photoshop to do all work of merging your photos. If you have a large amount of photos to merge and an older slower computer this step could take a very long time.

5.) When Photoshop has completed its merging of your photograhs you will hopefully have a decent looking panoramic photograph. You will notice that Photoshop has created several layers with masks. This will allow you to adjust individual sections if your colour balance or exposure varies a bit from section to section. You may also notice crack lines in the merged photo (see arrow in photo below). Do not worry about these lines as they will disapear when you flatten your image.

6) If you are happy with the general look of your photo you can flatten it to a single layer (this will eliminate the crack lines). To flatten your file go to the "Layers" menu and  select "Flatten Image". When this is done you can crop your photo and adjust the colour balance and exposure on the entire photograph until you are ready to save and possibly share your new panoramic photo.

Below is the final version of the panorama from this short tutorial.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Find Google on Twitter

I found this  post on the Official Google Blog. The post listed all the accounts that Google has created on Twitter, and they even divided it up by category.

To see the list of Twitter accounts that Google has created on Twitter you can click here:

Monday, November 2, 2009

View RAW & DNG thumbnails in Windows 7

To view RAW & Adobe DNG thumbnails in Windows Explorer in the 64-bit addition of Windows 7 just download and install the free*** FastPictureViewer WIC RAW Codec Pack.

***(Recently FastPictureViewer has started charging for this codec pack. It is still reasonable at only $9.99 but if you still want the free version, you can download it from CNET.)

For installation instructions, follow the instructions below:

1) Go to and download the  64-bit edition of the WIC RAW Codec Pack.

2) Click on the Fast Picture Viewer WIC RAW Codec installer file that you downloaded to begin the installation.

3) At the first pop up window click "Next".

4) At the next screen, if you agree with the EULA than place a check mark next to "I accept..." and click next.

5) At the next screen you can choose to install codecs for all the available RAWs and DNG formats or just select the RAW types that you need and the Adobes DNG format. My recommendation is to just leave this as is, with all available RAW types and the Adobe DNG codec being installed. Once you  have made your choice click "Next"

6) On the next screen click "Install". If a UAC prompt pops up just click "Yes"

7) After the installation has completed a new window will pop up. Just click "Finish"

8) A final window will appear asking you if you want to restart your computer. You can choose to restart now by selecting "Yes" or select "No" to restart later. Before you can view RAW and DNG thumbnails in Windows Explorer  your system will have to be restarted.

9) After a system restart the installation is complete and you will now be able to view most RAW files and Adobe DNG thumbnails in Windows 7 Explorer.