Panorama in Reverse


Today’s Question: I hope you don’t mind a question about iPhone photography. I like to use the iPhone to capture panoramas, but it always wants me to pan from left to right. Is there any way to change this so I can pan from right to left?

Tim’s Quick Answer: You can absolutely switch the panning direction when capturing a panorama using the Camera app on an iPhone. Just tap the arrow to switch between left-to-right panning and right-to-left panning.

More Detail: There are two features related to capturing a panorama with the iPhone Camera app that I find many photographers are not aware of.

First, as noted above, you can reverse the panning direction for capturing a panorama. Normally, when you switch to the “Pano” mode within the Camera app, the arrow you see will be pointing to the right, indicating you need to start on the left side of your scene and pan to the right as you are capturing your panorama. However, you can simply tap on the arrow to “flip” it to point left. You can then start your capture on the right side of the scene, panning to the left across the scene during the capture.

In addition, I think it is worth keeping in mind that you are not limited to horizontal panoramas. You can also capture a vertical panorama when using Pano mode in the Camera app on an iPhone. All you need to do is rotate the iPhone for your capture.

For Pano mode, if you are capturing a horizontal panorama, you would hold your phone vertically and pan across the scene during your capture. If you want to capture a vertical panorama, simply rotate the iPhone 90-degrees, so that the arrow indicating the panning motion points up or down (depending on the direction you rotated the iPhone). And, as needed, you can tap the arrow to switch between panning from the bottom to the top of the scene, or vice versa.