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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Non-panorama stitching
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06/17/2018 03:49:05 PM · #1
Friends,

I've had experience with stitching several photos of a scene to create a panorama. I want to do something similar but I don't even know what to call it. Imagine that I've got something like a can of soup. I put it on a turntable and take a series of pictures as I rotate the turntable 30 degrees between shots. That gives me a set of photos that show all sides of the can.

What I want to do is stitch all the images together to recreate the label of the can. I want to be able to wrap the print around a different can and have a replica of the original can.

What is this called?

Does anyone know of software that will do this kind of stitching?

I think that some panorama stitching software may have an option for doing this. Can those of you who use panorama stitching software check to see if your software has this feature?

Thanks for your help.

Peace, DanW
06/17/2018 04:11:03 PM · #2
DAN! Long time no see! How ya doing?

Regarding your query, I see no reason offhand why ANY 3rd-party, panorama stitching software wouldn't be able to do this. It's EXACTLY like making a "real' panorama out of individual images... Unless I'm missing something?
06/17/2018 04:17:31 PM · #3
I'd try searching for "3-D product photography" first ...
06/18/2018 10:23:43 AM · #4
Originally posted by GeneralE:

I'd try searching for "3-D product photography" first ...


That's most likely a good way to start. Just stitching as you would a panorama may not get you good results; the cylindrical shape of the can is going to be a problem for stitching. In order to stitch the label accurately, you'd have to apply a transform to each original image such that the label appears as a rectangle. Now, it would be very interesting to see what happens if you don't apply the transform, and just let the stitching software warp the images as it needs to. It's worth trying... in fact I might try it myself, just to see what happens, LOL!
06/18/2018 10:37:52 AM · #5
Provided that the photographs are only of the rotating object and nothing above or below it (unless that's a solid color) then normal stitching software should work fine. With that said I can foresee some things you might want to do before stitching, particularly if the object (like a can) has both depth and detail.

In particular, if you're using a wide angle lens you may want to consider removing barrel distortion/pin-cushion before merging as the change in depth can distort the details when merged. The other option would be to do only small rotations and merge more images.
06/18/2018 12:39:21 PM · #6
Can you remove the label from the can? Maybe with only damage to the strip that was glued which you could photograph first?
06/18/2018 08:11:11 PM · #7
If you have Photoshop, experiment with its various photo-merge options.

Also, when you shoot, allow for a 50% overlap from image to image. The more, the better. Yeah, it takes resources to process, but allows for a much better end result.

Have fun!
06/18/2018 09:36:01 PM · #8
People keep creeping out of the woodwork, kewl!
06/20/2018 11:09:18 AM · #9
Originally posted by digifotojo:

People keep creeping out of the woodwork, kewl!


Yes, it is nice to be back among friends. I had some rough years but I'm now doing well.

~~DanW
06/20/2018 11:21:06 AM · #10
Originally posted by kirbic:

Originally posted by GeneralE:

I'd try searching for "3-D product photography" first ...


That's most likely a good way to start. Just stitching as you would a panorama may not get you good results; the cylindrical shape of the can is going to be a problem for stitching. In order to stitch the label accurately, you'd have to apply a transform to each original image such that the label appears as a rectangle. Now, it would be very interesting to see what happens if you don't apply the transform, and just let the stitching software warp the images as it needs to. It's worth trying... in fact I might try it myself, just to see what happens, LOL!


GeneralE's suggestion was a good one--but most of what I found was about processing video to produce images that could be rotated to look at any side of the object. That is not what I want. I want to be able to look at all sides at once.

I do have Photoshop and I did try to merge a set of eight photos of an object. Photoshop reported that it couldn't match up the images. It may just be that my object didn't have enough sharp details for the software to find matching points--my object is not actually a can and it doesn't have a printed label. But I suspect that Kirbic is right; different transformations are needed to do what I want to do.

Thanks for all your help.

~~DanW
06/20/2018 12:58:25 PM · #11
It may have trouble matching up due to the curvature of the object. Try taking photos filling the frame and then crop out everything but the middle third before trying to stitch them. You'll need many more shots do this so the overlap occurs in the middle third so maybe just try a couple and see if you can get them to stitch.

Message edited by author 2018-06-20 12:58:42.
06/20/2018 01:05:48 PM · #12
Matching images can be a problem if there's distortion due to the focal length used. You might have to move the camera closer or farther away and adjust the focal length to compensate.

Ideally you'll have the object centered on a "Lazy Susan" (turntable) and the camera on a tripod with focus and exposure settings locked to make the images as consistent as possible; lighting from both sides will probably help too.

Can you be more specific about the object you're photographing or is it a "trade secret"?

ETA: Try using AutoStitch -- I've been using the free demo version (for years) and find it does a pretty good job, with the limitation of only working with JPEG files. I've only used the Windows version, and I prefer the interface of the 32-bit version, but there is a newer 64-bit version available too.

Message edited by author 2018-06-20 13:10:55.
06/20/2018 01:35:32 PM · #13
PhotoShop merge is going to assume images on a plane with a certain amount of overlap. It creates layers for each image in the stack and then selectively masks out the overlaps. As amazing as it is, I don't think it's the tool for your application.

However, maybe if you tried it with 95% overlap and only 2-3 degree turns of the table...
06/20/2018 02:50:02 PM · #14
Originally posted by MarkB:

It may have trouble matching up due to the curvature of the object. Try taking photos filling the frame and then crop out everything but the middle third before trying to stitch them. You'll need many more shots do this so the overlap occurs in the middle third so maybe just try a couple and see if you can get them to stitch.


This approach may get you there, but you still may need an image transform prior to stitching. I tried quick test using 8 images, and it failed to stitch (miserably). This was using PTGUI Pro which will pretty much stitch anything stitchable.
06/21/2018 04:59:48 AM · #15
I've managed to run across Invert Panorama, but couldn't find any software yet.
This is what you're looking for? Inverse Panorama
06/21/2018 05:35:25 AM · #16
Originally posted by sarampo:

I've managed to run across Invert Panorama, but couldn't find any software yet.
This is what you're looking for? Inverse Panorama


That's something I tried a while ago using Hugin:

16207509_79560ac16729005354c186f90fcbfa16_standard.jpg


I've tried the can, but I think you're going to need to take very thin slices to avoid the perspective distortion.
06/30/2018 04:43:27 PM · #17
Originally posted by sarampo:

I've managed to run across Invert Panorama, but couldn't find any software yet.
This is what you're looking for? Inverse Panorama


BINGO! That's exactly what I was looking for. The photographer says: " Iíve been doing some experimental photography with inverse panoramas. Thatís taking a 3D object like a sphere, and photographing the whole thing so it can appear on a flat page in itís entirety. The technique itself has been around for many years as slit-scan photography but I am trying some digital techniques to produce the effect. Hereís an almost 360 degree view of a modelís head in one image." His image is exactly the kind of image I am trying to create.

Several of you have suggested that I might have to take a lot of images. I think the mention of "slit-scan" supports that idea. I could take a lot of very narrow (slit) shots that could be pasted together without much need for perspective or distortion corrections.

The object that I am actually photographing is a bowl. I want to show the entire outside surface of the bowl. I described it as a can with a label because I thought that was simpler to explain.

I have now photographed the bowl on a turntable with a 45 degree rotation between views. I've manually stitched the eight photos together. It it clearly eight separate photos but it does accomplish my goal of showing the entire surface of the bowl.

Thanks again for all your help.

Peace, DanW
06/30/2018 05:08:44 PM · #18
Stanley Kubrick used a form of slit-scan photography to create the "wormhole" effect in the latter part of 2001: A Space Odyssey ...
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