Recently, one of my friends shared with me a picture on Facebook that was labeled “Taking a Panoramic Picture while Rolling Down a Hill”. It was of a gorgeous picture, supposedly taken with an iPhone while rolling down a hill. She “challenged” me to see if I could do it, or more specifically, if my husband could do it. I immediately accepted – but I wasn’t about to roll down a hill! I pulled out my laptop, fired up Photoshop and let the editing begin!
Step 1 – Take or Create a Panoramic Picture
For this tutorial, I’ll be creating a panoramic picture using an existing picture. Some elements you will want your picture to have are:
- Landscape – 4:3 aspect ratio
- Skyline – 1/2 or 1/3 of the picture should have sky, preferably with trees or buildings in the background
- Open your picture in Photoshop
- Select the Crop (C) tool
- In the tool preferences, check “Unconstrained”
- Drag the top and bottom handles of the bounding box until you have a panoramic picture, then press “enter”.
- The next step is key in making this a successful edit. You MUST have each end of the picture appear as if it’s continuous.
- Using the Marque (M) tool, draw a selection around either the left or the right side of the picture.
- Once you are happy with your selection, click “Command”/”Control” + “J”. This JUMPS your selection to a new layer.
- Click on the new layer. Using the Move (V) tool, click and drag the layer to the opposite end of the picture.
- Then go to Edit > Transform > Flip Horizontal. Your picture should look funky like mine does below.
- Select the Eraser (E) tool, and using a medium sized soft brush, erase the hard line, blending the two layers together.
- Once you are happy with your edit, go to the Layers Palette Menu and Merge the layers.
Step 2 – Wrapping your Image
Now the fun part begins!
- Go to the Image menu > Image Size
- Uncheck “Constrain Proportions”
- Whatever the height of the image is, make that the width of the image as well, so you have a perfect square. (See below for an example)
- Click OK.
- Now go to the Filter menu > Distort > Polar Coordinates…
- Make sure “Rectangular to Polar” is checked
- Click OK.
- You will now have a wrapped panoramic picture!
- Feel free to crop and edit with your favorite MCP Actions!