June 19, 2013
“Buci Bird,” Paris. To shoot his 360-degree wide-angle panoramas, photographer Brent Townshend takes between 18 and 24 frames while slowly turning around in a circle.
If you were a fish and could spin like a ballerina with your chin in the air, you might see the world the way Brent Townshend photographs it. The Bay Area-based artist has traveled the world—London, Paris, New York, and San Francisco, of course—with his fish-eye lens pointed skyward, snapping 360-degree panoramas of clouds, bridges, and towers in as many as 1,000 photos a take. “When you walk around in a cityscape, you live on a very horizontal plane, from the ground to maybe a few degrees above,” says Townshend, whose work is on view in a group show at San Francisco’s Modernbook Gallery through June 29. Shooting wide-angle, he says, “allows you to capture this wide view and put it into a single viewpoint.” Have you ever seen Grand Central like this?
“Grand Central Terminal,” New York.