A good article on the subject, but…
I’ve tried doing panoramic shots; I’ve tried really hard. With a camera with an off-center tripod mount; with one that’s in-line with the lens; and without a tripod at all.
The problem is parallax, and I have yet to see any decent how-to for panoramic shots that even mentions the word, nevermind instructing one how to avoid or minimize it. Panoramas are great for landscapes and such but what if your subject has long horizontal lines (for example, stairs) in the foreground and you can’t physically move to compensate? Or, what if you have, instead of horizontal lines, regularly repeating vertical lines (for example, lightposts) â€” heaven forbid you have both at once. The lightposts themselves aren’t the problem, but they tend to move against the background as the position of the camera changes in each shot. I spent over an hour in the Memorial Church courtyard at Stanford on each of two mornings trying different techniques to capture the place but was foiled by one or both of these problems (depending on the technique).
Maybe it’s just the “perfect” sample photos you see with articles about these things and that they purport to make the process simple and easy. Fine, and they’re accurate to an extent. But next time, let’s have a little paragraph on how to avoid choosing a less-than-good subject, okay? Extra credit if you include a sentence using the word parallax to describe part of what you’re avoiding.