A panorama is defined as a wide, unbroken view – usually of a landscape.
Here are two panoramas of Mycenae – the Bronze Age stronghold of Agamemnon, who went off to fight at Troy. The site seems chosen to overawe as it’s approached – flanked by two high hills like great wings.
It’s a strategic location, too. The citadel at Mycenae commands a view over the plain, looking right down to the sea at the Gulf of Argos. From here the Mycenaeans would have been able to control (and tax) all traffic and trade into the Peloponnese up towards Corinth.
While we’re still in Greece, this is the Vaporia area on the island of Syros. The Greek part of my family live just minutes away from the water, up behind the church of St. Nikolaos. You can see the islands of Tinos (L) and Mykonos (R) on the horizon.
Here’s another, taken from the top of The Rock of Gibraltar. As well as the harbour, the view takes in Spanish Algeciras on the other side of the bay, and you can see the mountains of Morocco across the Strait. Three countries, two continents – all in one photograph.
So you can see I do landscapes, but I use the same techniques to do very wide-angle photographs of interiors, too.
Sometimes it’s just about getting a wider view than normal (you’ve seen some of those on this site already), but sometimes it allows me to show details right across a location. Gladrags hire theatrical costumes, and with a panoramic shot I was able to show the extent of their stock and storage area. They are based in an industrial unit in Brighton, while the entrance hall at Lloyd’s Register in the City of London is beautifully clad in marble.
I was able to do the same thing for Kate’s dance studio – though the wall mirrors helped a lot with the sense of space.
Sea views are obvious candidates for this technique. Here’s the front at Brighton, complete with our recently restored Victorian bandstand.
My brother runs a museum in Swansea, and so I did a very wide view of the whole sweep of Swansea Bay. This one’s over twelve feet wide when printed for a wall.
The images don’t have to be horizontal, of course. You’ll have seen the vertical shot of the Lloyd’s Register atrium on the ‘Commercial’ page – this is the entrance atrium of Ravensbourne College of Art.
And while we’re talking about landscapes, here’s one with an aircraft in the foreground. (it’s a sneaky way of letting me put in one of my air-to-air shots . . .)
and another aerial shot, a panorama of New York – I’d gone there to photograph for an air courier company, back when the World Trade Centre was still standing.
Finally, here’s a panoramic shot of the Chattri Memorial, on the Downs above Brighton. It was the Hindu and Sikh cremation site of Indian soldiers from the First World War, who had been evacuated to a wartime hospital in the Brighton Royal Pavilion, and had subsequently died of their wounds. I photographed it in the Spring, but the November poppy wreaths were still vivid after weeks under snow. A few years ago the photo was used in ‘We Were There Too’, an exhibition commemorating the contribution of Indian troops to the forces of the British Empire in the Great War.