• Gabi Berger

Why I love the vertical panorama feature in my smartphone's camera

In this post I will talk about the panorama feature in smartphones but it applies to all other cameras let it be point and shoot, mirrorless or DSLR.


When we think of panorama shots, most of us will think of the traditional horizontal panorama of landscapes and city skylines.



In addition to the traditional horizontal panorama, where you shoot your panorama pic as you pan from left to right or right to left, you can also shoot vertical panorama, also called vertorama, meaning you pan with your phone up and down or more frequently down to up.


What is a vertical panorama

Basically it's the same as the panorama, but it's shot vertically. In a vertical panorama shot, you hold your smartphone horizontally as you move your hands from down to up. A vertical panorama combines horizontal images vertically. It will allow you to capture more foreground as you capture something tall. But, it won't always work and you need to keep some things in mind, which I will cover in a bit.


When to use it

We have a scene, but not everything fits into our horizontal frame. Know the feeling? Then it's probably good time to try vertical panorama.


In the example below, the building is not that tall, but with regular mode, I can fit either the building or the fountain as a whole. Using vertical panorama for 2-3 frames allows me to capture the scene as a whole and without too much distortion. Check the video for the camera movement that creates the panorama photo.





How to create a vertical panorama shot with your smartphone


For iPhone users:

  • Launch your camera app, then swipe twice to the "PANO" mode.

  • Hold your device horizontally and hit the camera button to start the panorama, when you're at the last frame, hit the camera button again to finish the photo.


For Android users:

  • Launch your camera app, swipe right to open the options menu and select Panorama

  • Hold your device horizontally and hit the camera button to start the panorama, when you're at the last frame, hit the camera button again to finish the photo.


General tips

  1. Panorama shots will create distortion, the longer the panorama the bigger the distortion will be. For this reason, and because I dislike the long format picture, I like to keep my panorama shots to 2-3 frames only. You don't need to fill in the entire frame that your phone indicates, you can stop to pan after only 2-3 frames.

  2. Watch out for moving people and objects in your scene. As the stitching process will cut some heads, legs or any other moving body parts, these may essentially ruin your shot.

  3. Use vertorama to include some foreground elements, this can make your photo stand out.

  4. Shooting with vertical panorama to capture nature photos is great and the distortion will be much less present.


I used vertical panorama so that I can include the beautiful trees in the foreground that create a natural frame for the church.

You can edit your panorama shots the same way you edit your regular pictures.


Did you like this tutorial? Let us know!


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