I use an XPAN + 45mm lens and I find like Keith my best shots are ones that I build from front to back and include something in the middle ground. A total change to that method seems to be the work of "EarlyRiser" who makes the entire foreground interesting. The sea assumes a different characteristic by a long timed exposure. My XPAN has changed my approach to photography and I enjoy reading and seeing other people's approach to pano.
Sorry to read of your accident. Hope the damage heals quickly and you get to work with your new wide view soon. Just to stir the pot I would suggest a different approach. Something in the way you see motivated you to buy this attachment. I felt that way after seeing Lois Conner talk show her work using a 7x17 in China. I would encourage you to give that motivation complete freedom and discover what results. You can always make adjustments later.
A starting method often suggested is to take a piece of 8x10 cardboard and cut a hole in the middle the exact ratio of your gear. In my case that is 7x17 or a ratio of 2.43. I would then look around at the subjects you like and see what fills that hole. This is just to start giving you the feel of the camera’s view. You will probably discard the tool as you get the feel of the composition.
Michael Mutmansky and I spend a half day shooting an abandoned greenhouse with his 7x17. I asked him to proceed as he would but to say out loud what was going through his mind. As with Jim Noel, his most used lens was 300mm. A normal lens would be 466mm or so. He also said that when composing be sure that there is something interesting out to each edge.
I am working on a 100 image submission for a book on the OH & Erie canal. The locks are very panoramic, 90 feet long and 15 feet across. At about 60 images my most commonly used lenses have been the 300mm and the 600mm for close detail on the opposite wall of the lock. There are four samples in my gallery.
Enjoy whatever works for you. Frankly I think I would much more enjoy RobertP’s 8x20 nudes using the vertical orientation than my canal locks.
Originally Posted by keithwms
This is exactly my problem with most wide images. The forground becomes a distraction. Haveing been bouncing around the net looking at pano images, there seems to be two solid camps. Thise with the wide angle, bg ass forground, and the no forground. Sure, there are those outside these two boxes but most fall here. There area lot of pictures emphasizing symetry (sp).
John, I don't plan on falling into any formula and always shoot what I like. Composing for the long and skinny image is new and I was wondering what others thought. Thanks for the sentiment about my foot. It was a stupid thing to do. I am up and around, it just hurts. I will be playing with the format a lot.
For some reason there aren't many panoramic photos that I really like...but there are several antique panoramic paintings that I do! Maybe that is a sign that I should try to make panoramic shots more abstract. High contrast techniques, alternative processes, etc.
What I have discovered it that I prefer to section up a panorama, myself. I have built several cycloramas. I really love the feeling of being inside the 360 image, *and* having vertical lines break the view every now and then. Of course, with digital stitching nowadays, there need only be one seam. I want to try that next....
But, getting back to panoramic composition. I think the ones that work best just break the composition down into its basic graphic elements and emphasize these above all else. I don't get wowed by detail in a panorama so much as the drama of it and the basic design elements within. The appreciation of the detail comes later, after the line, shape, and value have already drawn me in.
2F/2F this might interest you, I have fitted a kaidan 360 to various medium format cameras. The digitally dewarped image is a stitchless 360. I'll attach a goofy test shot from my apartment.
Lest anyone object, I admit that the dewarping is digital, but... the shooting is to film.
How do you compose with this thing? Well I'm working on it...
David, thanks for the link. I was not aware of Sinsabaugh before. My kind of stuff!
Originally Posted by David A. Goldfarb
I've been learning panoramic for a year now. Its different and takes a change in the vision.
Very interesting, Keith! Keep it up...show us more.