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Edit the Nadir, Part II

In Part I we saw how Hugin can be used to extract the nadir from a full spherical panorama for retouching. While there are a number of other methods (as kindly indicated by readers of this blog in the comments), this method has one strategic advantage: it can be used to extract a layered view. This is what we will do next.

Below is a nadir view of a full spherical panorama. It has already been aligned. It was shot with a Sigma 8mm fisheye lens, six shots around at 60° distance, so there are six images around the nadir.

All steps described in part I until just before clicking the Save project and stitch button have been performed. Before clicking that button, tick the Remapped Images box in the appropriate colum. Then Save the project and stitch. In this example, when prompted for a filename prefix we enter “nadir”.

layered nadir panorama preview

After the rendering, there are seven new tiff files: nadir.tif is the composite, and nadir0000.tif – nadir0005.tif are the individual layers.

Now, start a command line interface. A lot of photographers seems to have a phobia of the command line interface, but it really does not take more than basic typographic skills to use it. At the prompt, work yourself into the folder where the seven tiff files have been created with the cd command. Once there, enter the command

$ PTtiff2psd -o nadir.psd nadir.tif nadir0000.tif nadir0001.tif /
  nadir0002.tif nadir0003.tif nadir0004.tif nadir0005.tif

This will merge the tiff files into a single Photoshop file. At the time of writing, there is a bug in PTtiff2psd – it will fail if more than five tiff files are merged. You can also load all the tiff files into Photoshop and use a Photoshop action to import them into a single file.

nadir layer edit photoshop

Edit the nadir in Photoshop. Specifically, edit the masks to determine the seam placement between the individual images. When finished save it. Then flatten the layer and either use the Panotools Photoshop Plug-ins or the steps illustrated in part I after the edit to merge the nadir back into the equirectangular image.

2 Responses

  1. The reason I prefer not to use the command line tools is that my panos have 30 to 50 images in them.
    It is cumbersome to type that many filenames into the command line, and easy to make a typo.
    PTtiff2psd is ineffective with this many images, as it has to be run iteratively to build a pyramid of layered images.

    Good tutorial! I have been using a technique similar to that you give in part I

  2. Even if you have a lot of pictures you can select them all with regular expressions. Eg `filename_000[0-9].tiff` will include filename_0000.tiff through filename_0009.tiff
    The command line provides a lot of control, don’t be afraid of it!

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