How to photograph a 300 ft tall tree without getting a splinter

National Geographic magazine is running an article about the redwood forest this month, and part of that article included a very special vertical panoramic shot of a 300 foot tall tree. Shooting in the redwoods is particularly difficult because you lose the sense of scale. If there’s not something like a house or a bus next to the tree, you really can’t show how massive the trees really are.

Photographer Nick Nichols traveled out into the forest to do just that: capture a photo of a tree that’s over 300 feet tall, while keeping a sense of scale. Standard photographic techniques just wouldn’t cut it, so Nick had to get creative.

What the photographer ended up doing was building a custom rig containing 3 cameras, each one taking a slightly different shot: one to the left, one to the right, and one on the dead center. The rig was mounted to a gyroscope, and then the cameras took a series of pictures as the rig was lowered to the ground.

The end result: a vertical panorama comprised of 84 pictures, all stitched together to create one of the most complete pictures of a redwood tree we’ve ever seen. Check it out:

[via Hackaday]