Panorama modes on smartphones are becoming increasingly common and easier to use, all while producing better and better images. The panorama setting on my Galaxy Nexus produces some pretty decent results.
If you're looking to take some 360-degree shots, though, you're going to need something a bit more robust. Mikeasaurus over at Instructables will show you how to build one yourself out of a trash can, some zip ties, some old-school disposable cameras, and a few other parts.
The idea is pretty simple: The cameras are attached to a plastic band that goes around your head, sort of like a helmet with the top chopped off. There's a switch that gives power to some servo motors, which press the shutter button on all the cameras at once. The number of cameras you can use is going to depend on the circumference of your head, but if you attach them vertically, I bet you can probably squeeze twice as many cameras onto your noggin.
Sure, there are some options out there for professional photographers, but the added character that comes from the homemade 360-degree helmets shouldn't be overlooked. I'm waiting for the ultimate hipster version, using iPhones for cameras that all automatically add a filter to the photos and upload them to Instagram. It might be a bit more expensive using iPhones, but at least you won't have to take the contraption off to wind all the cameras every shot.
Make sure you check out the directions on Instructables for a look at the 360° photos he took, and if you decide to build one of your own, make sure you let us know how it goes and post some pictures.
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