Interested in a bit of hometown adventuring? We've got a great project for you, where the process is every bit as fun as the final product. Our friends at Candy Glass Productions made this great tutorial on spinning a camera around a building. With some careful planning and exploratory legwork, you'll be able to fly around a monument of your choosing with ease!
How to Spin a Camera Around a Building
Step 1: Selection
Pick a building or monument that is tall enough to be seen from all sides, at a distance. Pull it up using Google Maps, and take a screenshot. Import the shot of the area into Photoshop and draw a circle around the building.
*P***Pro tip:** The bigger the building, the bigger your circle should be!
￼Step 2: Prep
Use ‘street view’ in Google Maps to mark shooting locations along the circle you’ve drawn. You’ll need about 36 locations. Some of the locations can have obstructed views, but most should maintain a fairly clear line of sight to the building.
Step 3: Shooting
Bring your marked map with you on your shoot. When taking pictures, try your best to line the building up with a marker on your camera’s viewfinder so it’s in roughly the same place every time. Check off your map locations as you travel along your circle.
*P***Pro tip:** Take 2 shots, about 20 feet apart per location on the map. This way the animation won’t strobe.
Step 4: Post Production
Bring your photos into Photoshop. Line up the building in each shot to the center of the frame. Add motion blur to the mid and foreground objects so they appear to be in motion. Export the photos, import them into your editing software, and you’ll be spinning a building in no time.
Upload to Vimeo and celebrate!
￼￼If you’ve got a cool building or monument in your area, break out the maps and apply what you've learned here. Go orbit some architecture!
A very special thanks to lesson contributor Barry Pousman for his assistance with this lesson!