Vertical Panning Technique by Mark Simms

If you fancy trying something a little different that pushes the creative possibilities of photography, without resorting to fancy Photoshop magic, then why don’t you try your hand at some vertical panning. I first came across this technique in an edition of “Practical Photography Magazine” a number of months ago.

It’s really very simple. Whilst the shutter is open you slowly move the camera up or down in a steady vertical motion. Because the movement of the camera is vertical I think this works best with tall vertical subjects – hence the reason for choosing trees as my subject in the shot below:

Winter Woods For this image I used a shutter speed of 0.8s and to get this in daylight hours (even in a wood with mid-winter light) I was working with an aperture of F22 and an ISO of 100. I’m not saying these are necessarily the best settings – when attempting something abstract like this its very much a case of trial and error – but I think this image works well. Of course the speed in which you move the camera up/down also has a major impact on the outcome.

Because of the arty, almost paint-like feel of the resulting image, I felt I had scope for pushing the post-processing more aggressively than I would normally…..I have to say that I really enjoyed the creative freedom that this allowed.

I’m really pleased with this shot – I especially like the ghostly, ethereal quality of the
finished image.

If you want to see some more examples of this technique then please just follow the
links below:

Ghost Forest

Winter Woods In Abstract

You can see more of my work at

Remember, just four days to go to the closing date of the competition so send your entries, on the theme of spring, to Be sure to put Photo Submission in the subject field.

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