Old Town Hall tower vantage point for biggest ever photograph of Prague
Photographer Jeffrey Martin has just released the largest photo of Prague ever taken and indeed one of the largest photos ever produced anywhere. Martin, who specialises in panoramic photography, spent three days taking thousands of individual images to create a single image that is 900,000 pixels wide. As he told me, he took advantage of the opportunity to shoot from a unique vantage point.
“I was granted access to the scaffolding that was on the Orloj, the Old Town Square clock tower.
“It covered the entire tower, even over the roof, so I was able to stand above the roof of the tower.
“I mounted an eight-metre pole on the scaffolding and on the pole was mounted a panoramic robot.
“On the robot I had mounted my camera. It’s a kind of standard professional DSLR with a 600-milometre lens.
“So with a 600-milometre lens obviously I was able to have a very narrow angle of view. I shot around 8,000 photos.”
In the photo, how many kilometres from the Old Town Hall can you make things out clearly?
“I’m not familiar enough with the geography of things that far away to identify what the buildings are or what the places are where they are, but I believe it’s around 15 to 20 kilometres.”
You’ve done other panoramic photos of Prague in the past. How does this one compare to what you’ve done before?
“This one is much larger. About eight times larger than the previous ones I’ve shot.”
Was it difficult to get permission to take this incredible photo from the scaffolding on the tower of the Old Town Hall?
“These sorts of things I don’t even bother asking, because the answer’s always no [laughs].
“There was a fellow from a large corporation, from their marketing department, and he asked them. They said yes to him.
“This is the kind of situation where it helps if you’re part of the marketing department for a large corporation – they find it more relevant and interesting, so they said yes.”
I know you’ve been living in Prague for many years. How does it feel to be the person who has taken by some distance the biggest photo ever of the city?
“Well, it’s kind of a nice feeling.
“I like to create these sorts of images because they remain interesting for many years.
“In some cases they become more interesting after time passes.
“I hope it’s something that people keep looking at and that remains available for a long time.”
Is there any other place in Prague from which you would love to take a panoramic photo?
“I shot at the TV Tower a few years ago – that was a nice place to shoot from.
“But this location on Old Town Square was really unique because the scaffolding is only there about once every 30 years.
“It would be nice to shoot another image from any of the medieval towers that are around the city.
Jeffrey Martin’s panoramic photo can be seen here: www.360gigapixels.com/prague
“They’re often hard to access at the top unless there is some special circumstance.
“So whenever I have another chance to climb up one of these towers I’ll take the opportunity.”