as usually, sorry for my English, as it is not my native language.
Here I am just going to share my workflow for making a full sphere panoramic picture (a 360º photo) using my quadcopter, a DJI Phanton, with a gopro hero 3.
I don’t have a gimbal. Until now I am using the water case that came with the gopro fixed in the standard support that came with the Phantom.
Another good advise is that a fullshpere panoramic picture can get complex itself, mainly for the ones that never did one, so, if this is your case, you better try to make one made with a more stable support than a quadcopter. You can read this other article I have published before. Notice that without rotating using the axis that passes through the NPP (no parallax point) one can have a lot of parallax errors. Here an equipment that can minimize this problem. Even without it, if you can put the gopro in the vertical and fix it closer to the center of the Phantom it will help.
- As a first step I put the gopro looking at 45º down
- Set it up to make timelapse with one picture at each 2 seconds and made it start them – this will make many useless pictures, but ok
- Flight till the desired point and counted until 3, trying to count 3 seconds
- Rotated 45º and counted again until 3, repeating it until finish an horizontal line of pictures
- With the camera in the horizontal position and depending on the scene I do another horizontal line of pictures with the camera looking to the horizon (0º)
- If the Phantom flies high enough and there is no object at the same high of it, this will probably not be necessary
- When I have to do this I put the Phantom down, move the camera and put it up again. This usually generates a lot of parallax problems.
- After all (could have been before) I took a picture of the sky from the ground, to stitch with the aerial ones
Here are two examples made using this workflow
- Aerial Panorama at San Diego Embarcadero Marina Park North
- Aerial Panorama at Leblon, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Both only published only in Portuguese, sorry.
- This kind of shooting can result in a lot of parallax problems that usually can only be removed in a post processing editor like GIMP or other advanced image editor that has tools like clone, healing, different selection tools, rotate selection, move selection, feather selection and maybe a little more features. Here some tips on removing parallax errors in post editing with GIMP.
- As the gopro doesn’t have manual exposition, color difference can also appear between images. Usually the stitching software will be able to deal with it, but if doesn’t you can also correct it in an advanced image editor. Feather selections is a key feature for that. I have made a video tutorial here, but unfortunately it is also in Portuguese.