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name and portrait Antonio Victor Garcia-Serrano


company
website name Zakato Interactive Photography
website url http://www.zakato.com/
city and country Elche, Alicante, Spain

personal statement

I come from a 3D computer graphics background. One quiet and clear day, while surfing the net, I got hooked by Professor Helmut Dersch's panorama-tools fisheye magic. That happened more than ten years ago, and since then I have been fishing 360º panoramas.

Photography and picturing has been a family subject for a few generations already. I too have followed this path but from a technological perspective. After finishing high school I pursued a Computer Systems Engineering degree and ended up doing research in computer graphics, which finally led me into getting a PhD by the year 2000. During all those years photography was nothing but a serious hobby to me.

When I first found out about interactive panoramic photography at the beginning of this millennium I was instantly fascinated by it. I saw it as the meeting point between the art of photography and the technology required to capture and display this kind of 360º graphical representation, and thus it immediately appealed to me.

If there is one thing that I discovered during my years of research it is that reading, experimenting and learning is a non stop game that shall last for a life time. I have naturally been applying this insight to the art of capturing 360º takes since that very first moment I stumbled upon it. I have been in a continuous search for new knowledge and techniques and have successfully played with macro-panography, table-tops, robotized and pole capturing as well as other conventional techniques.

What I like most about this kind of photographic capturing is the fact that everything around has to be taken into consideration and thus I find that the required set-up and planning is always challenging. Moreover, you do not really get to know what you have captured until the final development and stitching is performed and that to me keeps some of the essence of traditional photography.

I am most keen on nature and outdoor scenes, though I am currently trying to locally expand the use of 360s to accompany and complement that of conventional photography in helping to document live events. As a computer graphicist I believe not only in the photographic technique but also in the way that the resulting images are displayed and enhanced by means of interactive multimedia presentations.

I proudly consider myself as a World Wide Panoramer, not only for having contributed to the so-named event from the very first time back in 2004, but also for having had the chance to inmersively visit the earth and beyond thanks to this technology. I must finally add that I am really indebted to the panoramic photography community for this last decade of personal development which I hope will continue for many years to come.


suggested panel layout

first image
first image title The Great Athena
first image subject West facade of the Parthenon
first image place date On the Acropolis, Athens, Greece, October 29, 2010
first image caption This panorama is part of a series that was taken during a short visit to the great city of Athens. During that stay, my first time there, I could feel that the city had something special, not sure if it was the ancient history that could be sensed all around, or that yin-and-yang mix of Mediterranean chaos and Greek order, or the lovely variety of smells coming from all over. What impressed me the most though, was that big rock, the Acropolis, that could be seen from anywhere around and that really has some kind of magnetism.

This particular shot, taken at the Acropolis, shows the west side of the Parthenon Temple with the morning sun rising behind. I used a tall monopod and took 8x3 images to compose the full sphere (Canon 400D - Sigma 8mm - f9 at 1/50 +-2 - ISO 100 – RAW)

second image
second image title Hiking Leja Millamon - Sunrise
second image subject
second image place date Sierra de Orihuela, Alicante, Spain, May 22, 2008
second image caption

This long-planned hiking trip was finally accomplished with the help of a friend that accompanied me all the way to the top of the mountain. This Sierra is a typical low Mediterranean range, not far from the sea and surrounded by plains. Even though it is not very high (highest peak only 633 meters) it has splendid panoramic views of the whole region.

We started our excursion in the late afternoon and after a few hours we set up our "base camp". We did this just in time to see the sun setting, followed by the surprise of an orange moon rising. The next morning we walked to the highest summit to see the magnificent dawn light with the sun rising from the sea and left a "we were here" message in the notepad at the trig point. I used 8x3 source photos to complete the full sphere (Canon 5D - canon 15mm - f13 at 1/320 +-2 - iso 160 - raw).


third image
third image title Moonlight - a Cricket Oasis
third image subject
third image place date Rural district of Daimes, Elche (Alicante), Spain, August 23, 2010
third image caption

I had long wanted to experiment with this kind of night shot, so finally on a full moon and windless summer night I decided to go fishing for some 360’s. I have captured this same spot several times already. It is located in a rural district that I have known for more than 30 years, a quiet and beautiful place where I tend to end up whenever I want to try something new.

What amazes me about these kinds of shots are that they render images and colors that are not really visible to human eyes. One particular thing that I recall from that night was the sound of crickets chirping. For this image I placed the camera close to the ground to exaggerate the perspective of the palm tree’s crowns at the zenith. (8 images, Canon 5D - canon 15mm - f2.8 at 30" - iso 100 - raw).

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