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I am contemplating taking a picture of a subject from a different angle until I reach a complete circle. As for the frequency, let's assume something from the range of one photo every 1 degree (that would be an exhausting 360 photos) to something like every 10 degrees. I have seen photographers do this and the results are very cool. The go-to advice for this is to find a physical circular object outside to walk alongside.

Question

Assuming we don't have a circular object just laying around in our backyard, what is another viable approach to getting the most accurate circular path to walk alongside as you take shots of your subject over 360 degrees?

Further Clarifications

  • subject: motorcycle (large and heavy)
  • If tethering with a string, I'd need a way to hide the string from the shots
  • I want the subject to remain still and I want the background to change
  • How large is the object? If it's small enough you could just put it on a lazy susan & turn it. Would keep your lighting even too. …or do you intentionally want the background to change, like a rotating steadicam shot? – Tetsujin Aug 26 at 11:42
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Simple option: a length of string.

Tie the string to the object in the centre, or peg it into the ground etc. Tie the other end onto your camera or tripod leg. Then you can keep the string taut, as you move around in a circle. It will keep the camera a fixed distance from the centre.

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Set you camera to manual focus, and shoot at the distance where the camera confirms focus.

1

If the object is not too large, put it on a turntable of sorts, and turn it instead of the camera. That way you can even put a solid background behind it and get consistent background and lighting for all the shots.

If the object is large enough that turning the object is not viable, then the string idea works, even if it's just to mark a circular track around the object rather than attached to the camera/tripod.

  • Just be aware that you'll get a different look turning the object than you will if the lighting remains in the same position relative to the subject. That may be desired or not depending on the effect you want to achieve. – user1118321 Aug 27 at 1:49

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