Looking at Affinity

On this typical dreary Berlin day I decided I needed a picture that both explained the day and practiced a skill so it didn’t ossify. It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these multi-image stitch’s but it’s a bit like riding a bike, the memory comes back easily.

This picture is a compilation of 21 individual frames and fills out to 175 megs as a TIFF file, which is very large for the old ten megabyte 5D that I shot it with. It isn’t the file size nor the images massive amounts of detail that draws me to doing pictures like this, but the ease with which the picture can be made to look normal to the eye. The verticals are straight and there is none of the distortion seen in wide-angle lens. It simply looks like it should, something that is difficult in the real world.

 

All very well and good if you have Photoshop, I hear people say, but not much help if you don’t. Well, that isn’t strictly true because the program I use to do all the stitching is an older copy of Autopano Giga, which wasn’t expensive at all. And now there is a rival to the domination of Photoshop. A new program called Affinity Photo has been just been launched in its Beta version and anyone with a Mac can download it for free to play with it for a while:

 

http://www.diyphotography.net/new-high-end-real-alternative-photoshop-can-shake-paradigm-free-beta/

 

My experience with it so far hasn’t been too positive but then it’s a Beta version and the reason for putting it out there is to find out what’s not working without the expense of extensive testing. A bit like the DIY checkouts now proliferating in supermarkets and the no waiter/ress coffee shops pioneered by Starbucks. Still, with the proliferation of digital cameras in homes there needs to be an affordable competitor to Photoshop, hopefully one that concentrates on photography and doesn’t try to be everything to everybody.

 

85mm, f4,1/100sec, ISO200 (The image below give is how much one frame will capture)tower-small

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