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Photographing Panoramas for Large Prints

Lesson 25 of 30

Printing with Lightroom


Photographing Panoramas for Large Prints

Lesson 25 of 30

Printing with Lightroom


Lesson Info

Printing with Lightroom

So let's now get into the nitty-gritty about printing. So this is fun. This is where we actually get to make a final print. We've made quite a few today. I think we've made, how many? Seven? One, two, three, four, five, six, and this will be our seventh one that we'll make today. I'm gonna print one that we know and love. It's my favorite from this whole event. Right there. So let's just review the whole process. Got my files from my camera. I selected all nine of them. I developed them. I made them look pretty. I'm happy with the contrast. I did my global adjustments. I did my local adjustments. I fixed the dust, okay? All of that's ready to go. I did my noise reduction, if necessary. And then, finally, I did my sharpening. Actually, on this image I didn't do my sharpening. So let's do a little bit of sharpening, and then we're gonna do the print. So I think on this one a good setting here is... Yeah. 75ish. Radius of one. Cut down on the detail a little bit 'cause I see some noise sh...

owing up. And then masking. Hold down my Alt key and just kinda do edges of buildings. Okay. And now I'm gonna zoom in to 100%. I'll just check that everything looks copasetic and good, and I'm happy with that. Just turned it off. And now I turned it back on. And I'm happy with that amount of sharpening. Okay. Now it's time to print. So printing is hard. I'll just be honest with y'all, printing is really hard. Printing your own images on an inkjet printer takes a lot of patience and a lot of trial and error. And my goal today is to help prevent a lot of your mistakes. So hopefully you can follow what I'm doing here and prevent costly mistakes, inkjet jams, and color mismatches, all that stuff. Hopefully we're gonna solve all that for you. But this next part is where a lot of confusion really lies, and it's in the print module, and it happens in the printer driver. So we're gonna now go over here to print. So that's the printer module. And this is Lightroom, again. So in Lightroom there are basically four areas that we have to adjust or prepare for printing. So before I show you those, I wanna head back to keynote because I've actually laid them out in a list for you all to look at. And if you've bought the workshop, I think this is in our bonus material as your Lightroom printing checklist. Basically, everything that you have to think of in Lightroom and make sure to set up properly. So first thing is page setup. That's an actual button in Lightroom. I'm gonna show you that in a minute. You have to choose the printer, you have to choose the paper size, and you have to choose the orientation, landscape versus vertical within the paper. The next are the print settings. Again, this is another button. So we're gonna go through the print settings. We're gonna check the feed. Like where is the paper coming from? Is it sheet fed? Is it roll fed? The paper style. The quality of printing: low, medium, or high quality printing. How many copies do you want to make? And then is this a black and white or a color? And as funny as it sounds, I forget that all the time. I forget whether or not I'm printing a black and white or color. Actually, I forget to check the box. And so sometimes I send it to print it and out comes a black and white, and I'm like aw, my mistake. Number three: the Lightroom panels. There's a whole segment of panels that we have to go through and make sure all of that's set properly. And then finally the printer. So that's another button. So we're gonna go click printer and then we have to confirm the settings and then finally actually execute to print or hit print. So let's do that. We'll head back in here into Lightroom and I'll take you through that process. So here's our print. And you can see that what Lightroom did is it took the image that we've worked on and it threw it on wherever the current printer settings were last used. So if I had an eight 1/2 by 11 print that I was making, it would have put this panorama onto that little piece of paper, and it would have looked funny. So that's where we go to page setup. And that's in the lower left-hand side of Lightroom. So we click on page setup. So here in page setup we have a number of pull-down menus. And I wanna make this point: Your printer and your printer driver and your printer software is gonna look totally different than this. And I know that, and I know I can't answer everyone's questions about what about my Epson or what about my Canon 'cause every single printer driver's different. This is what I've got here with this little Epson. This is the P600. Okay, so what do we wanna format the print for? Well, here are the current printers that I have installed on my system. We've got my brother. This is my office, scanner, fax machine, and black and white printer. Well, I'm not gonna use that. Here's the Epson SC-P600 series. This is over WiFi. This one here is over USB, same printer but over USB. And then for some reason I have this HP Color LaserJet. I don't know where that one came from. Who knows? I'm not gonna print to that one, so... We'll choose our Epson that's in the room. Next, what's the paper size? Okay, so the printer paper that we currently have on this guy is a 13-inch-wide paper. So it's 13 inches wide by, oh man, I'm gonna say it's like 50 feet long. That's how long that roll is. So I have to tell it what this photo is that's going to go to the printer. And you can see here that I've already pre-entered these certain aspect ratios of prints. So 13 by 39, that's one unit to three units, right? So 13 inches high by 39 inches wide. And that's what I crop this image to was a one to three crop. So I'm gonna pick my 13 by 39. Orientation, how do you want the photo to be oriented on that paper? Do you want it horizontal or, well, in this case, it's not changing it for some reason. Okay. Normally, it does. It'll flip it. It might be such a big file that it's just too slow on the response. So and now I'm gonna click okay. Interesting. So when I did that it reverted back to an odd-sized paper choice. And this, I said it before, printing is hard. Your software does stuff like this all the time and I never quite understand why, you know? I just it for 13 by 39. Why'd it go back to this other, which looks like a two to one aspect ratio? Okay, just be patient. Go back to page setup. Choose 13 by 39. And for some reason, you see down below here? For some reason it says 13 by 27 inches even though it's in my 13 by 39 preset. I don't know why that happened, so I'm gonna go into manage custom sizes, and I'm actually go in and change it. Again, 13 by 39, 39 inches with no margins left, right, bottom, or top. Okay, so I click okay and I click okay. There we go. So there's my paper. Well, what's the problem? Well, for some reason the software didn't automatically resize the print to the paper. So, again, another moment of frustration like ah, what do I do next? It's okay. So this is where I move over here to the right side to these panels. You see over here in the layout segment it says where do you want your margins to be and then what do you want your cell size to be? Well, I'm gonna move my margins down to zero 'cause I'd like zero margins. And then cell size, I want the height and the width to be maximum for that paper size. So now you can see in my preview I've got no white strips around the edges. And if you get white strips around your edges, you know that you didn't format this layout segment properly. All right. And now I'm gonna go back to the left and I go to print settings. Again, choose the printer. The Epson sounds good to me. Default settings. The default settings here shows that I'm printing a black and white print. I don't wanna do that. I want this to be the color print. You know why it says black and white is because you asked for the black and white print and that's what we did. So I'm gonna uncheck that. Next is for the media and quality, where does the paper come from? Well, I'm gonna choose the roll. So I've got a roll feeder on the back of that printer. So that's where the paper's coming from. And then, finally, what's the paper type? Well, it comes pre-programed with these general paper types. So photo satin, photo mat, glossy, semi-glossy. You can also download the paper types from the manufacturer and include those here as other options, but for now it's photo satin. I'm cool with that. And then, finally, quality. Do you want a normal quality or the best quality? Well, we're all about the best, so best, baby. Here we go. Save. So now that saves that. Now we're gonna move to the right. More panel talk. Lightroom has a whole bunch of different ways to make prints. So up here in the top we can do a single image, which is what we've got, or we can do a picture package where we can make like a bunch of five by sevens, eight by 10s, eight 1/2 by 11, you can make this picture package and then save those as JPEGs and send 'em off to your laboratory. And they make out a bunch of these, on one sheet of paper a bunch of four by sixes, five by sevens, and eight by 10s as one big package. We're not gonna do that today. Image settings. Well, we wanna zoom to fill, yes. And we wanna rotate to fit. You know, if we don't rotate to fit, you see what happened there? It rotated the thing horizontal on a vertical piece of paper, and we get a little strip of the panorama. That's not what we want. Repeat one photo per page. That's if you're making multiple prints. We're not doing that. Do you want a stroke on the print? In other words, like a little black line around the edge, or a little white line. Not for this one, but if you do you can program that there. We already talked about the layout. So I moved the margins to zero. And then grid, this is where I could actually put in multiple panoramas or multiple images. So like I could do something like that and then repeat that panorama multiple times on this, I forget how long this was, 39 inches. So we'd have four prints that are each smaller. Again, we don't wanna do that. Cell size, that was the most important one. And so I think the biggest tip I have for you in the studio and those watching at home is if your print looks funky like that, then change your cell size sliders until they fill up the entire cell like that. All right, show guides, that's just a visual reference here at the top of the scene. If you wanna see the actual inch guides, great. Do you wanna put an identity plate or a water marker, anything else on there, you do that here under page. And now we get to the bottom print job. Okay, what are we printing to? Well, we're gonna print to a printer versus printing to a JPEG file. So if I print to the printer, it's gonna there. If I print to a JPEG file, then it will actually output a new JPEG that I can now take to the lab like Costco or Mpix or something like that. Draft mode printing, no. Because I'm pretty much ready to go full bore on this one. I want it to be high-quality. Print resolution, we talked about that earlier. So this is gonna be 39 inches long. So it's gonna be about that big. 240 pixels per inch makes sense for that. If I was going really big like six feet long I might actually move this down. I'm gonna get really technical on you here. You only have so many pixels to work with on the original image, right? And, in this case, there's quite a few. I forget what that was, 20,000 pixels. Let's make it easy math. Let's say 30,000 pixels. So if I have 30,000 pixels and I wanna print at 300 pixels per inch how many inches can I get out of that? Well, 30,000 divided by is 100 inches. So 100 inches, what is that? Eight feet or so, eight something feet. So using the same number of pixels, but using a lower resolution I can actually get more footage or a larger print. So that's another thing that we do sometimes is we're only given a certain amount of pixels in our panorama, so to go bigger I actually go lower on the resolution, so... We have all the pixels we need, though, for this image, so I'm gonna shoot it over at 240. Print sharpening, we already talked about that. Yeah, I'll activate print sharpening. I'll let Adobe do its thing. And then the last one here is 16-bit output. Haven't talked at all about this today, so this is a good time to talk about that. If I uncheck that, I would be at eight bits. In other words, I'm sending the file over to the printer with eight bits of data versus sending the file over with 16 bits of data. 16 bits, what that does is it gives you much more dynamic range. It allows more of the shadows to be printed and more of the highlight data to be retained. So if your printer has the option or ability to take 16-bit data, I recommend sending it over. Just a little point here: If you send out a JPEG, like if we said file, print to JPEG, that's only an 8-bit file. So most of your online labs when they're printing JPEGS are just using 8-bit file formats. But the cool thing about printing at home and one of the reasons I actually sometimes enjoy printing at home is because I get more color. I get more dynamic range 'cause I can actually print in 16-bit mode. That's it. You guys ready? [Audience Member] - Yes. All right. Here we go. I'm gonna open up the printer. Oh, you know what? I lied. I got one more thing. Color management. This is big one down here. There's a lot to talk about here. We could literally talk for two days about this one thing, but I'm gonna keep it simple. So you have to think about who is managing the color transition from, do y'all remember what color space we're in in Lightroom? [Audience Member] - Pro. ProPhoto. You're paying attention. You get a hug. Okay, so we're in ProPhoto land, and what we're gonna do now is we're gonna go from ProPhoto RGB into Epson P600 RGB, actually Epson P600 CMYK 'cause that's what they're using, all these different inks and papers. So who manages that, or what manages that? So do you want that to be managed by the printer or do you want to manage it through Adobe's Lightroom product? So normally I say manage by printer and it works out just fine, but sometimes I get an odd color. Sometimes I get a color shift and I'm like you know, that wasn't what I was expecting. I'm calibrated, but it just isn't quite right. So then you would actually choose, I know the paper and I know the printer, and I've actually spent time and I've profiled the whole system with my Xrite product here. And so because of that I've created a new profile, and I want that to go over. That's called application managed colors. Okay, application as in the Lightroom application is gonna manage it versus printer-managed colors. And so for this, to keep it simple, I'm gonna say printer-managed colors. And now we open up printer and we go print. Everything looks good. Off we go. See ya. All right, those take about 10 minutes to print. So as I move on to Photoshop, now we'll let that thing hum and whir.

Class Description


  • Shoot a variety of 360 degree panoramas (skylines, landscapes, vertical and horizontal) with the final print in mind
  • Stitch your images together to create a panorama with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom
  • Print large images to sell or display in your home


From the skylines of New York and Los Angeles to Switzerland's mountainous backdrop, some scenes are just too spectacular to fit inside a 3:2 frame. Being surrounded by and immersed in a beautiful vista is part of the joy of being a photographer -- but how do you capture what it feels like to stand there in person inside a single image? Panoramas capture that feeling of wonder and squeeze it into the limited form of a two-dimensional print.

Take the experience of seeing a magnificent vista or panoramic view home with you. Join Mike Hagen, director of the Nikonians Academy, and learn his techniques for mastering the art of the panorama, without a dedicated panoramic camera. In this class, he will teach you:

Learn everything you need to make a breathtaking panorama from capturing that spectacular view to hanging the panorama above your couch. Shoot dynamic panoramas in the field that fit together easily when stitched in post-processing. Stitch them together with an eye for printing. Get your color toning right to minimize your reprints, and learn how printing can help you notice things that you may miss when the image is in digital format.


Adventure, travel and landscape photographers looking to improve their final product, make it print-worthy and potentially sell their work.

Adobe Lightroom Classic CC 2016, Adobe Photoshop CC 2015.5


Join photographer, author, and educator Mike Hagen on the journey to perfect the panorama. Hagen has taught hundreds of workshops spanning topics from landscapes to using flash, all while running Visual Adventures and working with the Nikonians Academy. The USA-based photographer has led destination workshops from America-based destinations to bucket-list international locations like Iceland, the Galapagos, and Italy. Hagen is known for his humorous teaching style while presenting complex topics in an easy-to-grasp lesson.


  1. Class introduction

    A print is tangible evidence of an experience, as Hagen says, but that doesn't discredit the process of actually taking the shots, editing the images and, yes, finally getting that print. In the first lesson, Hagen walks photographers through what to expect for the class from packing the right gear to perfecting that final print.

  2. Field Techniques, Camera & Lens Choices

    Unlike film, you don't need a specialized panoramic camera to create a digital panorama -- just something with some megapixel power. Don't assume that all panoramic views are captured with wide angle lenses, however. While the result is a wide field of view, Hagen explains when he shoots with a 14-24mm lens -- and when he shoots with a 70-200mm or even a 200 to 400mm lens. Discover the right gear for panoramas and why you don't necessarily need the most expensive lenses in this lesson.

  3. Selecting Gear for Great Panormas

    The smaller accessories are often just as important when stitching multiple images together for those wide views. Hagen walks you through what tripods to use, along with time-saving accessories like a bowl head.

  4. Camera Menu Settings & Exposure

    Without the right camera settings, differences between images will create obvious stitch lines. Hagen walks photographers through the best settings for shooting panoramas.

  5. Troubleshooting Environmental Obstacles

    Panoramas are often captured while traveling when there isn't an option to wait for the best weather. This lesson looks at what to do when there are obstacles in the shot, from bad weather to objects in the way of the shot.

  6. What Contributes to a Great Panorama

    Can you really capture a great wide view without really knowing what makes a great panorama? Learn what makes a great panoramic image and what mistakes to avoid.

  7. Shooting Vertical Panoramas

    There's no rule saying panoramas are all horizontal wide views. Sometimes, a vertical panorama is a better fit for the scene. Vertical panoramas present new challenges, however, with lens and perspective distortion. Here, Hagen shows photographers how to minimize those distortions for great vertical panoramas.

  8. Shooting Techniques for Black & White Panoramas

    If you start creating a black and white panorama in the editing stage, you're not going to get the best result. Learn how to properly expose and shoot a panorama with monochrome in mind.

  9. Handheld Technique for beginners

    Do you really need to spend hundreds on a fancy tripod set-up? What about when that visual spectacle isn't tripod-friendly? Tripods are helpful, but not always a must. Here, Hagen shoots on site with a tripod-free technique for panoramas.

  10. Tripod Technique for Intermediate Photographers

    Got a tripod, but maybe not the fanciest panorama gear? Walk through the process of shooting with mid-level gear for more than mid-level results.

  11. Advanced Technique for Panoramas

    Using the best gear, like a panoramic gimbal head? See a real-world shoot using high-end gear for photographers that shoot frequent wide view panoramas and learn advanced techniques for avoiding parallax issues.

  12. Navigating Moving Subjects in Panoramas

    Movement in panoramas creates tricky scenarios -- and can even make a person or moving object appear in your image more than once. While most panorama tutorials will tell you just to avoid moving subjects, Hagen walks through his approach for freezing a moving subject inside a panorama.

  13. How Time of Day Impacts Panoramas

    Light plays a big role in every image, and without flash as an option, planning the shoot for the best natural light is essential. In this real-world shoot, Hagen walks you through how he prepares to find the best light in the scene.

  14. Workflow in Lightroom

    By this point in the class, you have several, separate images -- this is where you learn how to assemble those images into panoramic views, starting by organizing all those files. Using Lightroom, Hagen walks through his post-processing workflow.

  15. Developing Images in Lightroom

    Once photos are uploaded, culled and arranged, development is next. Hagen walks through Lightroom techniques for editing before the stitch and easy methods for keeping images in the same panorama consistent.

  16. Merging Images

    Assembling those separate images together happens in Lightroom through the merge tool -- learn the basics as well as tricks for correcting panorama errors with tools like the Boundary Warp.

  17. Finishing Techniques

    The work isn't quite finished after the stitch. Learn how Hagen continues to fine-tune panoramas, from retouching the sky while leaving the lower portion untouched to removing dust spots.

  18. Saving Images for Print

    If you own your own printer, you can print directly from Lightroom -- but you can still get great prints without investing in a printer. Hagen walks through the best parameters for exporting large panoramas for lab printing.

  19. Controlling Your Environment

    There's a big difference between viewing a photograph on a monitor and seeing it in print -- and to help create the print that has the colors that you're imagining on the screen, the environment matters. Here, Hagen talks about why you may want to paint your office neutral colors and why it's important to know where that final image will be hung.

  20. Profiling & Calibrating Your Monitor

    Monitor calibration is important but often overlooked essential to getting prints to look just as great as the colors on your screen. Watch the monitor calibration process and real time and find the best types of monitors for photo work.

  21. Wide Gamet Color Settings

    What color space is best for working with large, high-quality prints? Here, Hagen explains color spaces and when to use each one.

  22. Soft Proofing Images

    Printing errors are expensive when you're printing out wide view panoramas that measure in feet instead of inches. Soft proofing is a technique that can help you avoid those expensive printing errors.

  23. Selecting the Right Paper for Prints

    Paper choice matters. Hagen walks you through how paper choice influences the final image and what paper choices are best for different types of panoramic projects.

  24. Sharpening Images

    Sharpening polishes that final image before printing -- but do you use Lightroom's sharpening tools in the Develop module or the Print Sharpening tool? Hagen walks you through the best practices for sharpening a photo for printing.

  25. Printing with Lightroom

    Lightroom's print module helps prep images for print, but what do all the options mean, and what settings are best for panoramas? Hagen digs into Lightroom's print module in this lesson.

  26. Printing with Photoshop

    Photoshop is another option to print panoramas from -- but a lot can go wrong here. Hagen walks through troubleshooting prints from Photoshop.

  27. Black & White Printing

    Editing and printing for black and white is an entirely different ballgame from color. Learn how to edit a black and white panorama in Lightroom, followed by, of course, printing.

  28. Best Practices for Printing your Image at a Lab

    You don't have to own a high-end printer to get great prints -- and in fact, Hagen himself sends a majority of his images to a lab. But how do you know what color space to use, and what lab is best for printing panoramas?

  29. Analyzing & Displaying the Print

    Getting great prints is about more than color calibration and proper print settings -- the room the image will be hanging in matters too, particularly the ambient lighting. Hagen takes students through the process of analyzing the print and prepping for the final display.

  30. Reviewing Panoramas Printed in Class

    Through this class, you've walked through the panorama process from gear to shoot to print. In the final lesson, take a look at the results of the images created during the course, from the classic Seattle shot in the United States to black and white 360 panoramas of France or Ireland.


Fred Morton

Get it, get it and get it. I bought Mike's Speedlight course and this is on the list after watching it on line. The course design by Mike with the Creative Live staff is a successful blend of content and presentation. I absolutely loved how Mike took us on location for several shoots, where we could see the setup and problems that he had to resolve. This is a must have course for photographers interested in landscape work. Another powerful part of this class is Mike's willingness to demonstrate and show us what didn't work. The practical experience in his course was just like being in the field with Mike.

user a5f3c6

Mike combines two characteristics of a great teacher: he's obviously knowledgable and competent about his subject matter and he's relaxed and confident in how he presents his ideas. This class covers everything I need to know about photographing and printing panoramas. But, it is much more. It is a class that shows the essential skills involved in shooting, post-processing, and printing photographs and how to apply them to a specific application: panoramas. I learned a lot! Thanks, Mike.

Sue Sirius

This workshop was terrific! I learned so much about taking, processing and printing panoramas (and photos in general). I found the presentation very easy to follow with great examples and instructions. Highly recommend this!