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Editing 360 Degree Photos in Photoshop & After Effects

Lesson 7 of 14

Replacing Tripod From Bottom Of Sphere

Chris Converse

Editing 360 Degree Photos in Photoshop & After Effects

Chris Converse

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Lesson Info

7. Replacing Tripod From Bottom Of Sphere
Now let’s go back to After Effects. We have not moved our camera position, so we can import the Photoshop file we just saved. We’ll import it as footage. We’ll drag the file into the Composition. Since we didn’t touch the pixels on the edge, After Effects will morph that file to the sphere shape and we now have removed the tripod from our image.

Lesson Info

Replacing Tripod From Bottom Of Sphere

now that we've removed the tripod from the lake. More retreat tripod export Photoshop file. Let's go back to after effects. We're inside of the VR. Edit one composition. Let's come up to the file menu. Let's come down and choose import, then choose file in the exercise files. Let's go into folder B. Let's choose the lake more retreat export dot psd with our tripod removed. Let's click open. Not for the options here, we're going to choose footage. We do have the option to choose specific layers. Or if we come down to composition, we can actually bring in multiple layers at once inside of the after effects file. But instead let's come in here and just choose footage which will treat all of the layers of the Photoshop file as one individual graphic. Let's choose. Open And now open the project panel. Let's click and drag the tripod export and let's drag it right into our composition. And it should snap into place and not to see the effects of this edit. Let's come down to the VR output com...

position. Well, now see that that new artwork is being distorted and mapped into that unwrapped spherical panorama. Now, if you notice this composition in the timeline panel, there's a little effects icon here. If we come up to the effect controls we can see the VR converter effects being applied to this composition and there's a few things we can change inside of here. One nice feature under the reorient camera view gives us the ability to change the content of that Unwrapped spherical panorama. So for example, we can come in here and change the pan by changing the degrees and we can actually move or reorient the panorama. Now this is a great feature to have inside of here. However, we want to make that change inside of Photoshop because there's additional edits that we're gonna make additional retouching we want to do and we want to make sure that all of the items that we're gonna be retouching don't touch the edges. And if we make the change that we want to make now, this access panel, for example, will actually come over here and touch the edge. So again, we're going to make this change in Photoshop but I wanted you to know that this particular plug in allows us to make some of these changes inside of after effects, including rolling the unwrapped sphere on the Z axis or tilting it on the X axis. And so now that we have seamlessly replaced the tripod, we need to export this out to a brand new panorama. Now, just like before, if you're looking at the half screen resolution, you're going to need to use the render queue. And if you're looking at the full screen preview, you can use these save Spoto players. So if you're seeing a full resolution preview, you can go composition save frame as choose Photoshop layers. And if you're seeing the half resolution, like I'm seeing here, we're going to come up to say frame as then choose file. Then in the render queue, click on Photoshop, click on resize to make sure that we get the full size which is 3 5076 by 6 2088. Click OK then click the file name for output. Go to exercise files, let's go into retouching and in either case whether you're doing save as Photoshop layers or using the render queue, we're going to name this like more underscore retreat underscore modified dot PSD and then we'll click save and just like before if you use the save Photoshop layers, you'll get a series of layer groups inside of Photoshop layers panel. And if you use the render queue like I just did here, you'll get a single background layer inside of the layers panel. And again, since these are both full resolution exports, this isn't gonna affect the final project. And so now, with our modified spherical panorama, next, we can make further edits inside Photoshop.

Class Description


  • Get a brief introduction to After Effects (from a Photoshop perspective)
  • Work non-destructively with linked layered Photoshop files
  • Seamlessly remove elements from a 360º photo
  • Create adjustments without causing a ‘seam’ in the final composite
  • Introduce 2D artwork (including logos) without distortion
  • Add special effects including a sunrise and sky replacement


As 360º photos continue to grow in popularity, especially in social media and hospitality industries, the next logical step is to begin editing and enhancing these images just as you do with traditional photography. The challenge is, however, that these are not flat images. As images are “unwrapped” in photo editing tools, we need to use alternate workflows for editing and compositing these types of photos.

This course will show you a step-by-step, non-destructive process, for masking out your tripod, applying 2-dimensional artwork, retouching, and color adjustments, as well as adding special effects to your image.


  • Photographers
  • Graphic Designers
  • Web Designers
  • Interaction Designers
  • VR Designers


Adobe Photoshop CC 2021
Adobe After Effects CC 2021
Ricoh Theta App (optional): 

FREE Basic App for Mac or Windows


Chris has over 25 years of experience in graphic design, interactive and animated media, with a unique focus on both design and development. Chris possesses development skills across such languages as PHP, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and MySQL, making his design execution optimal across various media, screen sizes, and device capabilities. In addition to design and development, Chris has been a featured speaker in over 225 industry-related events and conferences, including the NAB, Adobe MAX, How Design Live, AIGA, CreativePro Week, and Adobe Video World.

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Rex Maximilian

In Lesson 8 I would highly recommend grouping the layers into a folder named "Components," then duplicate it and turn the duplicate into a smart layer. Then rename the smart layer "Composite," or something like that. Then turn off the group of layers leaving only the composite layer displayed. This way the files remains editable for future lawn/image cleaning. The way the instructor did it would delete all of the layers for potential future editing.

Miguel Marnoto