Forum : Advice & Critiques

Can’t seem to get something to synth right? Curious about what lens is best? Ask your fellow Photosynthers here.

Topic: How do I start?

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rokbottom (Over 1 year ago)
I have downloaded Photosynth then ICE ( I think )I get to Create a Photosynth but cat seem to get any further, Help please.


NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
Hi, Len.

You'll need to give your synth a Title (first black in the upper left corner of the 'Create Synth' window. After you've added three or more photos and a title, the 'Synth' button will light up and allow you to press it.

Let me know if you need anything else.

Your fellow Photosynther, N
mysorian (Over 1 year ago)
First you create a number of shots. For example, stand in the middle of the room and take shots as you turn around. I am omitting some finer details but for starters this is good enough.

Now Start up ICE and bring in the 'stills' you captured into the project and click (I think it is stitch). You will get a panoramic view of all the photos stitched.

Now you publish to photosynth after giving a name and it be published to the photosynth site. The real trick is to take the 'stills' correctly.
NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
Mysorian makes me think I could have offered a little more in terms of beginning tips. If your aim is to make a panorama, then Mysorian is absolutely right about standing in one place and turning around taking shots that overlap each other. For a good clean panorama, your camera's lens shouldn't be moving through the air at all - just turning. 

To do this really well, you can buy special panoramic tripod heads (like a GigaPan) which will rotate around your camera's lens, for perfect seamless panoramas. If those are too expensive for you, you could always build your own. Read the 'bloopers' section in the following blog post from Blaise about how to get the most from the mobile panorama app for iPhone: The same principles will apply to all panoramas. You can also read more in this discussion:
NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
If your aim is to create photosynths, instead of panoramas, then you will need to learn how to shoot for 3D reconstruction. Here's a discussion with a lot of good links in it that will help you:
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Here's the first video tutorial in what I hope will be a series that just went up a few days ago on YouTube for shooting panoramas with the iPhone app: 

Mastering the Photosynth App - Episode 1: Great Indoor Panoramas
mischief-maker (Over 1 year ago)
Hey! Help please! I'm just starting out here too... but what I've got is lots of old photos B&W neg, colour neg & transparency of an housing estate that has been totally redeveloped. I wanted to see if could create 3D images with the 2-D images I have. They weren't created for this purpose though, don't always overlap, shot from different positions... still possible?
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Hi, mischief-maker, 

Photosynths are specially designed to deal with photos taken from different perspectives, however only portions of the estate which are rigid and which are seen in three or more photos (where each photo's perspective is less than 25 degrees different from its nearest neighbor) will provide good strong matches in 3D.

I should also clarify that a photosynth is really 2D images arranged in 3D space, rather than 3D images. There is also a very rudimentary 3D model generated by the keypoints which are found in common in multiple images (called the point cloud), but in all honesty I do not expect a very robust point cloud for a synth constructed from photos not taken with synthing in mind. I would have encouraged you to try to create a strong synth of the present day site and see whether the historical images would match in, but you say that it has been completely redeveloped, so the image matching may not be able to cope with the changes.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
That all sounds very negative, however I would say just go ahead and scan all the negatives and prints and see what Photosynth is able to match. Even if you only get a bunch of small clusters of photos matched, it can still give a helpful impression of looking around beyond single photos' frames. I once took all the photos I could find of C.S. Lewis' house, "The Kilns", and synthed them. Even though they were all taken by strangers who didn't know of Photosynth, I could see much better how different parts of the house fit together, even though not all of them matched each other. 

Have you tried a test synth with your images yet?
Niesatt (Over 1 year ago)
hey there, how do i get the ceiling in rooms or the sky without being black, any tricks?
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Niesatt, I'll assume that you're asking about panoramas, rather than photosynths.

Definitely take the time to read the links I give above about keeping your lens as close as possible to one point in space when shooting panoramas. This will help all the images to stitch into the same panorama successfully. 

Other than that, just make sure that your images overlap each other enough as you climb to the panorama's zenith and descend to its nadir. 

This will be made more likely to succeed if your surroundings have obvious visual patterns on them. In other words, capturing the ceiling and floor will be much easier in a room with a popcorn ceiling or a mural painted on the ceiling than rooms where the ceiling is pure white and glossy. Likewise, you will find that rooms with carpets, rugs, wooden flooring, etc. is easier than a floor that is all one color with no visual pattern.

If you're using the mobile panorama app for iPhone, you can take manual shots too.
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