It’s been a while…

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…since I dabbled with panoramic style photographs, but a few weeks ago I saw this scene of Little Long Pond in Acadia National Park and decided to give it a try. These aren’t simple crops from one traditionally sized image, but rather a series of several frames compiled into one.

To make this type of image, I turned the camera dial to manual and determined what a good exposure for the scene would be – using “manual” helped make sure there was a consistency of exposure between the multiple shots ultimately merged to make the pano. I also made sure to choose a specific white balance setting other than auto, and I checked that the polarizer wasn’t dialed in – that way there wasn’t any vignetting in the corners of each frame, and there also weren’t any extra-deep blue blotches in the sky where the circular polarizer would normally do its thing.

Manually focused, I then literally wound my body up tight before uncoiling slowly as I panned across the scene making multiple photographs – all the while trying to rotate the camera as tightly as possible around itself. Rotating the camera around its nodal point – the actual sensor – reduced the potential for distortion from a wide angle lens, and with each frame overlapping the next by about 30-40%, the stitching software had a relatively easy job making everything jive when back at the computer. Above is a screenshot of how the nine individual frames that contributed to the final pano looked on the computer before I merged them together to form one panoramic photograph (below).

Like I said, it has been a while since I tried one of these, and I had forgotten how much I like the field of view one gets. The first pano in this post is only 50+MB, but the second is a decent sized 156 MB. In the first I held the camera in landscape orientation and only needed maybe 4-6 images to cover the scene, whereas in the second I turned the camera on its side to portrait orientation, and although I needed a few more frames (9) to make it work, I was able to capture considerably more pixels. I’ve seen other photographers create panoramic images much larger than these, therefore making it possible to print at incredibly large sizes… all you then need is the wall space 🙂

A long little pond in Acadia

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This isn’t my first post this summer from this little gem of place. You’ll find this picture postcard view tucked away on the right hand side of Route 3 while driving from Seal Harbor toward Northeast Harbor. Every time you round a bend on this road you find a new rocky cove to explore – Bracy Cove is directly behind me this time – but instead of enjoying the ocean view here, I usually tend to focus on the pond and the landscape looking back inland toward Penobscot Mountain.

There were signs of life everywhere, with small and even decent sized fish enjoying the warm shallow waters along the edge of the pond. As you can see, Jack found himself some wildlife to photograph, and it was cute seeing him try to get a cool picture of his new little friend. The water lillies were in full bloom, and the beach rose was as pretty and as fragrant as I have ever seen it here. As I have probably mentioned before… this is one of my favorite places to just relax and soak in the scenery.

Little Long Pond

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Little Long Pond – opposite Bracey Cove – is one of my “go to” places at this time of year when the water lillies are out in full force. Normally I just enjoy the view looking over the water toward Penobscot Mountain in the distance, but on this occasion we wandered along the side of the pond for about half a mile and enjoyed some lush, pretty views. The vibrant June greens and the deep, deep blue late afternoon sky made for an exceptional sight and a very enjoyable stroll.

Winterberries at Little Long Pond

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This is another one of those locations in Acadia National Park that I hold near and dear to my heart, and it is a place I keep coming back to in different seasons. The first time I saw this view was in 1988 when Lori and I were on our honeymoon bicycling from inn to inn across Mount Desert Island. You might think that the coast road around here is pretty flat, but try riding from Bar Harbor to Northeast Harbor… methinks you will find out that it is relatively challenging, especially in the 80+ degree July weather we enjoyed. I recall coming hurtling down a pretty steep hill toward this spot, and after glancing to the right, immediately throwing on the brakes as we paused to take a break, rehydrate and soak in the beauty of Little Long Pond. Every time I pass along this stretch of road I can’t help but stop to check it out, and on this occasion I was treated to a familiar scene, a frozen lake and some bright red winterberries.