Learn How Luminar Can Quickly Transform Your Drone Panoramas

This article was updated on November 9th, 2020

I imagine this has to be a consideration for other photographers as well. Do you use the auto-generated panoramic image generated by the drone or do you take the RAW files into Adobe Lightroom for the merge?

In this edit, I will be using photos from a recent visit to John Muir Memorial County Park in Montello, Wisconsin. 🙂

Table of Contents

The Original 9-Photo Pano

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This file was produced by the DJI Mavic 2 Pro in camera, automatically.

I select the 9 RAW files created by the DJI M2P, right clicked and selected

Lightroom Classic | Spherical Pano

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Lightroom Classic | Cylindrical Pano

I feel the Cylindrical option looks more like the auto-generated DJI pano stitching. In this situation I am actually really liking the extra foreground of trees and the small creek you can see on the left-hand side of the image. I tried perspective but it came up with a very strange result.

Let's go Cylindrical!

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I also opted to to use ‘Fill Edges‘ with ‘Auto Settings‘ and this is what I ended up with.

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I click ‘Merge‘ to let Lightroom do it's photo editing magic.

Lightroom does something really special. It not only combined these 9-photographs into one file, it also creates a massive DNG RAW weighing in at 259MB (vs 11MB the drone created) for the final product. Pretty slick Rick!

Lightroom Edit

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DJI Edit

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The Lightroom Classic edit looks much more vivid and an increase in detail overall in the photo due to using ‘Auto Settings‘ on the export. The horizon was off by a little bit so I went ahead and fixed that before exporting it for use in Luminar 4.

I applied a Color Style (LUT) called Beijing to the land portion of the image and added a little PRO => Color Enhancer => Brilliance which really livens up the lake water and the left side of the horizon for some greater color contrast.

Last, I squeezed out a little more contrast with actual Color Contract in a new Adjustment Layer, dialed it up to +21 (Amount) and masked it with a gradient mask. Cropped 16:10 for fun.

Final Edit

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John Muir Memorial County Park

Click for full-screen view! 🙂

Gear & Software

Gear

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Mavic 2 Pro (Amazon | B&H | DJI) (Affiliate)

Software

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Luminar 4 by Skylum Software (pst…remember to use coupon code, ‘GRAYDON‘ for $10 OFF!)

Luminar 4 is also available on Amazon: