I took some photos of the match of Rugby Como and the next day I carried the shots (in landscape format) to be developed from my preferred photo lab. I wanted to quickly deliver the photos to the rugby team, but the scanner of the mini-lab accepts a maximum format is 24×36 mm. Here’s how to digitize it!
If you have an urgent need to digitize using a professional scanner a panoramic format negative, and your photo lab has a minilab with maximum format of 24×36 mm and you cannot wait some days, this is a tip for you.
1) After developing the negative, let the film in a unique strip, without cutting it into pieces.
2) Take the negative scan by introducing it first from frame 1 to frame 36 (or 24) and then in reverse, from the last image to the first photo. You need to do the color balance in the same way during the first and the second scan. Since the scanner of the mini-lab recognizes the spaces between a negative and the other, it will scan the right side first and then, in the second pass, the left side of each frame. You will get two files like these:
3. Now take a photo editing program and create a new file size slightly larger of the two images side by side. Open the two images, turn one of the two upside down and with the “copy and paste” align the two images side by side. If necessary, use the zoom, 200% is usually enough.
In my case I used a 35mm film roll in my Lubitel 166U, so each frame was 60 mm long. Because every image scanned is 36mm long from the right and the second part of the photos is 36mm from the left, there is a common central part. Not always the two photos are to be placed side by side; one image can be few pixels lower than the second one. In this case you must make a selection of the useful area.
4. After this procedure, because the scanner makes the color balance reading the colors on the film in a different way during the two scanning processes (for example you can have the left side of the photos with a different brightness from the right side), you can have some difference in color and brightness between the left side and the right side of the panoramic photo. Selecting one of the two parts, and with some patience, you can balance the colors (by working on the channels red/cyan, green/magenta and blue/yellow) and adjusting the brightness (acting on the levels of brightness and contrast, or on the curves of the histograms). Within few minutes you will get results like these:
Of course, I cannot made the scan of the sprockets, but in this case I had little time and this tip allowed me to give the photos of the match to the rugby team the day after the event.
The photos of the event can be found on the website of the team.
Good panoramic photos at all!