360 photography is a relatively new trend. The technique involves using a camera to capture images in every direction. For years, professional photographers would accomplish this technique with expensive cameras and equipment. With advances in technology, new cameras were invented that make capturing images and video in 360 degrees a breeze. Many of the most popular 360 cameras are incredibly affordable and can capture stunning, high-quality images and video. Combined with your smartphone and editing software, anyone can quickly go from an amateur 360 photographer to an expert in no time. In this article, we’ll discuss beginner 360 photography tips and tricks.
Modern 360 cameras are incredibly easy to use, small, and inexpensive. Editing your images can be quickly done with any Android or iPhone as well. 360 photography has never been more accessible for beginner photographers. Whether you are an Instagram pro or a total novice, a 360 camera can add unique and interesting content to your portfolio or social media feeds.
360 Cameras for Beginners
My Personal 360 Camera
Which camera should you choose? There is a wide range of 360 cameras to choose from. While you could spend over $1000 on a camera, there are many different options that can meet any budget. My personal 360 camera is the Madventure 360. This was an incredibly affordable camera I purchased before setting out on a worldwide digital nomad journey.
The Madventure 360 camera provides 2 lenses that capture 360 photography up to 7K and video up to 4K. The camera is waterproof, comes with a selfie stick & stand, and offers decent stabilization. The editing app is available for both Android and iOS. I’ve been using the camera nonstop for almost two years on the road and it still produces amazing photos and videos for me to share. While far from a professional device, it can meet the needs of any beginner 360 photographers. Unfortunately, the Madventure 360 camera is no longer available, but there are many other options to choose from.
While my expertise and tips will be focused on my camera, they can easily be transferred and used effectively with any other camera. Whether you are interested in capturing tiny planet photos or panoramic scenery images, investing in a 360 camera can help you achieve your photography goals.
Best 360 Cameras in 2021
So which camera should you invest in? There are countless cameras on the market that can meet your needs and budget. Many of the best cameras can be purchased for the price of a traditional GoPro camera. Some of the best brands include Insta360, Ricoh Theta, GoPro, and Vuze. These brands offer extremely high-quality cameras at good prices. While you can invest thousands of dollars in a camera, there are excellent cameras for aspiring 360 photographers in every price range.
If I was upgrading my current camera I would invest in Inta360 One X2, GoPro Hero Max, Insta360 One R, or Ricoh Theta Z1. These cameras are the latest and greatest on the market for personal and professional 360 photography use. Coming in at under $300, the Insta360 One R is a budget option that can produce fantastic quality images and video.
Beginner 360 Photography Tips
If you’ve ever used a GoPro or any other action camera, you’ll feel right at home using most 360 cameras. The majority of 360 cameras are incredibly easy to use and offer point-and-click photography and video recording. This makes it incredibly easy to take stunning photos and videos. Most cameras will come with a selfie stick and a tripod.
You’ll get the best pictures possible using a selfie stick, tripod, or monopod with your 360 camera. This lets you remove yourself from the image and video. Control of the camera is handled through an app on your smartphone. When the camera takes the photo or video, it will stitch the two images together. This will remove the selfie stick or monopod from the image. Long monopods and selfie sticks can be used to produce amazing, simulated drone imagery with some simple techniques.
Viewing and Editing 360 Photos for Beginners
The easiest way to view and edit your 360 photos and videos will be by using the included app for your smartphone. All the most popular 360 cameras include an editing app that will be available for download in your app store. Your camera has a wide range of controls in the app that can help you improve your photography. From ISO settings to aperture, you can have extensive control of your new camera.
Style and Editing your 360 Photographs and Video
Want to take amazing tiny planet photos or stunning VR-ready video? Your editing app will have the tools you’ll need. A 360 camera has two lenses facing opposite of each other. When you take a photo or record a video, both lenses record. Your camera’s app will then stitch the images together. This creates a seamless, high-quality, 360-degree image. YOu can edit the photo and image after the stitching is complete.
Tiny Planet Editing
The most popular use for a 360 camera is the creation of tiny planet videos and images. Your camera’s app will have an easy-to-use interface that will help you edit your stitched imaged and videos into tiny planets images. Most apps will also include other styles of images including flat, panoramic, and mirror ball. Editing these images is a snap and can be performed with your fingers in your app. Experiment with each style of image to find the perfect images that match your unique style and visual aesthetic.
Advanced 360 Photo and Video Editing
Do you want to be a beginner 360 photographer forever? To get the most out of your camera, you’ll want to use a wide range of photo and video editing apps. From editing the brightness of your image to using your images in flyers or advertisements, there are countless free apps online that can transform you from a beginner 360 photographer to a pro. Here’s a list of some of our favorites.
- Snapseed: Free, professional photo editing that rivals programs that cost hundreds of dollars. I edit almost every image with this software.
- Lightroom: Adobe offers a free version of Lightroom for your Android and iOS devices. If you use Lightroom on your PC or Mac, the app is a great addition to your editing arsenal
- Canva: Canva is a free graphic design app. It offers extensive tools for beginners and advanced graphic design artists. Create stunning social media posts or marketing materials in no time. They also offer a paid version that is fantastic. (We use Canva to create cool Album and DJ Mix Covers.)
- NeonCam: Neoncam is our go-to filter for creating intriguing visual aesthetics with our 360 photography. The filters are inspired by cyberpunk, vaporwave, outrun, and neon aesthetic.
- Instagram: Our go-to app for uploading and sharing 360 photos and video – Check out the collection on our Instagram account.
Best way to go from beginner 360 photographer to an expert?
Now that you bought your first 360 camera, it’s time to go out and use it. Experience is the best way to understand your camera and its software. We encourage all 360 beginner photographers to spend some time every day using their cameras. You’ll be taking expert tiny planet photos and videos in no time.
Do you have photos and videos you would like to share? Don’t hesitate to contact us and share them! Here are some of our favorites photos taken over the last few years traveling around the world.