Island Images Aerial - Drone Photography of the Isle of Man
Aerial '3D' Interactive Panoramas
 
A new venture for Island Images!  I've been shooting aerial panoramas since 2017, mainly using multiple shots with manual exposures and then stitching them to produce
a 'flat' panorama that you can scroll from side to side.  I also tried shooting using the DJI 'Auto Panorama' feature on later drones, but couldn't until recently find a satisfactory
means of stitching and displaying them.  I tried using the Island Images Facebook page to display them with some success, but wasn't happy with the way it worked on a PC.
I've now started using the excellent Kuula Pro website to upload the panoramas to and they are linked directly from here now. 
 The interactive panoramas for 2021 are also linked from thumbnails in the relevant 'Month' page. 
Click a link below to visit the master index pages for the Interactive Panoramas
 
2021
Jan - Mar
Apr - Jun
Jul - Sep
Oct - Dec
 
 Before 2021 the panoramas are not usually covering a full 360 degrees.
Lanzarote  2017 & 2018
IOM  2017 - 2020
 
 The main way to view the interactive panoramas will in future be through the pages linked above, but for the moment they can also be viewed on the
Island Images Kuula Site
This is my 'working space' though, so pictures may come and go here and sometimes be in a seemingly random order!
 
 
 
How are they produced
 
This covers the more recent ones shot from December 2020 onwards, mainly using the DJI Mini 2 and DJI Fly app, but with some from
the Phantom 4 Pro and Spark while the Mini 2 was unavailable.  For me, the Mini 2 is the drone of choice at the moment as it shoots the
pictures required quickly and at the right resolution for PtGui and then Kuula. The example below was taken in February 2021 at Creg-ny-Baa.
 
1 - Shoot the pictures
 
I'm using the 'Sphere Panorama' mode on the DJI Fly app which on the Mini 2 takes a series of 26 pictures covering 360 degrees around the drone location and directly below. 
These are downloaded post flight onto my desktop computer and the files renamed in 'Date/Time Group' format which helps me keep track of them.
 
2 - Stitch the 26 pictures into one panorama
 
I do this using PTGui Pro 12, an easy to use (or as complicated as you want!) program that recognizes the picture set as a 360 degree panorama and combines the 26
original pictures into one image.  It usually makes a great job of it first go but there are many manual 'tweaks' available if it doesn't get it quite as I want it.
 
3 - Final Processing
 
The stitched panorama is then dropped into Corel Paint Shop Pro 2020 for any final tweaks needed.  It doesn't look wonderful at this stage because a 3D image is being shown
in a rather distorted 2D format.  It's then saved with a new filename ready for uploading to Kuula.  I'll also make a thumbnail size picture for putting into the 'Month' page.
 
4 - Upload to Kuula
 
This next stage offers a few more editing options, the main ones that I use are choosing the direction and zoom at which the picture loads and the thumbnail displayed
on the Island Images Kuula webpage.  I'll add some details of the picture and also enable the Google Maps link so you can see exactly where the photo was taken from.
If you click on the image below it will take you to the finished Creg-ny-Baa picture.
 
5 - Produce the Island Images web pages
 
 
The final stage is to produce the pages seen on Island Images, using a handy tool on the Kuula editing page to produce the HTML code needed to make the pictures
work from within the main Island Images website.  The panoramas are made to automatically rotate at a slow speed, there are full screen and pause options (top right corner) and a
map option that will show on Google Maps where the panorama was taken from.
 
Island Images Main Page
 Unless otherwise credited all pictures on this website  © Jon Wornham