I'm not a photographer and know very little about camera and photography, still I couldn't help myself to ask how was this photo taken?

enter image description here

I got this photo from FaceBook.

Like was there any kind of photoshop included or can anyone take this kind of photo with some trick?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Actually that's not 360 deg, just 180. Think about it. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 18:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ The answer is several images were taken, the later stiched together by clever software. Such software finds the overlaps between adjacent images and use that to align them properly. It also generally tries to smooth over any steps in brightness between at the stitches. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 18:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's pretty impressive! Since we do not see the middle of the bridge, the photographer might have been standing on the railings and shoot a vertical panning sequence. It would be courageous to do that but easiest photographically speaking :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Itai
    Commented Mar 27, 2014 at 3:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Itai If he had a good tripod whose stands can be mounted on the fencing, he didn't have to do that. He could have simply taken one half, have moved around, and have taken the rest. Other than that, it's just a panoramatic picture, in vertical instead of horizontal. The algorithm is the same, just 90 degrees rotated. \$\endgroup\$
    – yo'
    Commented Mar 28, 2014 at 10:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ While I've done a great number of panoramas before, getting the nadir direction so uniform and seamless seems to be the issue here. At least is was overcast, so that explains why there are no shadows. \$\endgroup\$
    – Itai
    Commented Mar 28, 2014 at 11:26

3 Answers 3


First, that's not a 360° panorama, but a 180° one. However, that doesn't change how this was done.

This image was made by stiching together several more narrow-angle images. This process is generally called making a panorama. Some camaras have panorama capability built in. You take a few picture in succession and the clever firmware finds the overlap areas to determine registration between adjacent pictures, does some blending to avoid brightness discontinuities, and stiches the result into one wide image. The only difference here is that that "panorama" was taken vertically instead of the usual horizontally, but the process is the same.

There is also external (to the camera) software available to create a panorama from a collection of overlapping pictures. I'm sure this has been discussed here before, so no need to duplicate it in this answer. The search term "panorama" should help finding lots about this process.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Not that there anything wrong with your answer but seeing the image, I think the real issue is how to pull-off a panorama that goes under the photographer and shows no shadows. Otherwise, we've pretty much answered this general panorama question before. \$\endgroup\$
    – Itai
    Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 17:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Itai: It seems there's a pretty clear discontinuity at exactly of the center of the image - I propose the creator of this panorama just cropped out those parts of the two centermost photos that would've shown the photographer's feet. \$\endgroup\$
    – JohannesD
    Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 17:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Itai: The mechanics seem pretty straight forward to me. With a clamp on the railing or whatever, it seems easy enough for the photographer to move around so as to not be in each individual shot. There is always someplace to stand out of the picture each shot. Probably the self-timer was used to give the photographer a few seconds to walk away. I really don't see a problem here. Also, the lighting is diffuse (cloudy), so the camera is not casting a particular shadow. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 17:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ Without knowing with what equipment the above image was made, additionally to Olins point about stitching software I would also mention tripod heads used for panoramas. They are used to control the entrance pupil of the lens to reduce the parallax effect. Using such heads the camera is positioned so, that the entrance pupil is exactly at the rotation axis. Typically these heads are used for hor. 360° panoramas or spherical panoramas. (Maybe the above photo was not made using such equipment.) \$\endgroup\$
    – eogavy
    Commented May 1, 2014 at 16:05

This is similar to taking a regular panorama, just done vertically instead of horizontally. Someone probably stood at the center of the bridge, and began taking shots from the top of the treeline, on down to their feet to get half the coverage, then turned, and worked their way up the other side. Then, took a step aside, and took a "nadir" shot (straight down) where their feet used to be to patch over their feet (or they shifted as they turned around, so their feet never appeared in any shots).

Then the shots were stitched together using some form of panorama software (e.g., Microsoft ICE, Hugin), Canon Photostitch, or Photoshop's PhotoMerge feature.


It was made the same way horizontal - but real - 360° panos are taken.

A row of individual images, stitched together with the aid of some stitching tool.


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