I think this is my favorite panorama that I’ve done so far. I took this at the Tigers – Rangers baseball game on May 18th. It was a horrible game for the Tigers. The Rangers beat them 7-2. I was bummed. However, my nephew Dylan, his friend Jared and Dylan’s mom, my sister-in-law, Annette were all pretty happy! I think Eileen was bummed for me, but happy for the Rangers nonetheless. As you have read, we all went up to enjoy the game and we all had a great time, except for the score of course.
Usually when I go to these games I only take my little point and shoot camera. I can get some decent panoramas with that, but last time I tried it I got some really bad results. So, I went to the Rangers website and read their camera policy. Theirs is very similar to Sports Authority Field at Mile High in that you can bring any camera as long as it doesn’t interfere with other fans’ enjoyment of the game. So, the big boy went with me this time with the intent on getting a nice pano! So here it is!
This is not an HDR but it is a composite of 16 shots. I took 15 for the panorama itself to make sure I got some great overlap for Photoshop’s photomerge process and then I took one shot of just the infield during a pitch and masked that in so as to capture the moment and make sure everyone on the field is focusing on the task at hand. If you look at the largest version of the image on flickr, you can actually see the ball as it’s crossing from the grass to the dirt on its way to the catcher.
You see, usually when I take a pano from a sports stadium such as this, I don’t really pay much attention to what was going on down on the field because the I’m normally using my point and shoot and everything is usually moving as I take the shots. All that action gets jumbled during the photomerge process and turns out kind of messy. Well I wanted to make the shot look normal on the field this time plus add a little interest. I think it worked.
Oh, and one other thing that makes me happy about this pano is that when I did do the merge, the resulting image was already straight and level so I didn’t have to do any warping! That was awesome! Just a little cropping and content aware fill in a couple corners! I couldn’t believe it! Especially from a handheld pano! That’s rare for me because even when I use a tripod it comes out way tilted and I have to do lots of warping to correct some distortion.
Also this shot took a little work to process other than the merging and the masking of the infielders. The sky that day was very hazy and I really had to crank out the structure slider in Nik Viveza to bring out the clouds. I also used a little blue filter for the sky. Then I added in some contrast, a little darken/lighten center in Nik Color Efex 4 along with a few other minor tweaks and here you go!
Lastly, I did take a night time panorama as well that I will put out some time. I hope it turns out as nice as this one. I have started on it a little bit and one thing that is different is that it’s not quite as wide as this. Oh well, just something to remember for next time!
Click on the shot to see a larger version. Or click here to see the largest on flickr.
BTW, the players on the field in the shot are as follows:
P – Anibal Sanchez
C – Alex Avila
1B – Prince Fielder
2B – Omar Infante
3B – Miguel Cabrera
SS – Jhonny Peralta
RF – Torii Hunter
CF – Avisail Garcia
LF – Andy Dirks
3rd Base – Elvis Andrus
At Bat – David Murphy
On Deck – Lance Berkman