With the 360° images feature in Storyline 360, you’ve got some cool and powerful ways to build your own immersive interactions. But before you jump in and start getting creative, you’ll need to find 360° image assets. Not sure where or how to get your hands on 360° images? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll take a closer look at how to find and create your own 360° images for your Storyline 360 projects.
Finding 360° images?
Although 360° images—sometimes referred to as 360 panoramic or photo spheres—are gaining popularity, they can still be hard to find. If you’re just looking to see what’s possible with 360° images, or if you want to create an example project to add to your portfolio, then using 360° images you find online can be a great option.
First things first, you might be thinking: are 360° images available in Content Library 360? As of right now, there aren’t any supported 360° images available in Content Library 360. If you need a 360° image, you have three main options:
- Buy one on a stock photo site. This will give you the largest amount of options but can be expensive.
- Search online for free 360° images. Some websites, such as Pixexid, offer free 360° images you can instantly download and use in your Storyline 360 projects.
- Create your own. I’ll explain how to do this later on in this article.
When using images created by someone else, be sure to check the copyright and attribution requirements to ensure you’re not using them illegally.
Spotting 360° images?
One important thing to note is that there isn’t a surefire way to determine what is or isn’t a 360° image since there isn’t a file format specific to 360° images and people don’t always tag their photos with relevant keywords. For these reasons, there is no easy way to filter between regular images and 360° images when you’re searching online.
So how can you spot a 360° image during your search? Let me walk you through some things to look out for.
1. The image is distorted
The most obvious way to tell if an image is a 360° image is if the flat version of the 360° image looks distorted. For example, look at this image below.
See how the bed and other other elements in the image are distorted? That’s because it’s a 360° image.
2. The image has a 2:1 aspect ratio
If the image is twice as wide as it is tall—or has a 2:1 aspect ratio—it’s likely a 360° image.
3. Upload it to Storyline 360
To double-check if it’s a true 360° image, insert it into Storyline 360 to see how it displays. If it really is a 360° image, it won’t look distorted and will render correctly, as shown below.
Creating your own 360° images?
It can be challenging to find images that relate to your content. And if your course content requires learners to be immersed in a specific environment, custom images are your best bet. In that case, the easiest way to get the exact image you need is to create your own!
Some phones, such as the Pixel, have a built-in feature that allows you to capture your own 360° images. But not all phones have this feature. For example, an iPhone camera with panoramic mode enabled captures 240° cylindrical panoramas. And although you can still add 240° images into Storyline 360, they won’t render correctly, as seen in this example.
If your phone doesn’t include a built-in feature that allows you to take 360° equirectangular images, no need to worry! There are a growing number of 360° camera apps you can download to create your own. Any captured images will first appear as a distorted flat portrait, but you can use Photoshop or another photo-editing app to edit them for the best quality experience. Check out this blog post for more tips on creating your own 360° images.
Whether you use images you find online or ones you create, having the ability to add 360° photos into Storyline 360 gives you endless opportunities to create immersive learning experiences. For more information on using 360° images in your Storyline 360 projects, check out the following resources:
- New in Storyline 360: Create More Immersive Interactions with 360° Images
- Storyline 360: Working with 360° Images
- 33 Interactive 360° Image Examples in E-Learning
What tips do you have for finding and creating 360° images? Share with us in the space below!
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