How To: Make a Custom Stellarium Landscape

These instructions assume some landscape processing skills in Photoshop to be able to delete the sky and to straighten a horizon.

Create the image mylocation.png:

  • Use your cell phone on tripod to shoot a level panorama. Just spin it slowly a full 360 with the camera in Panorama mode.

  • Load into Photoshop and resize to 2048 wide.

  • Remove the sky. It needs to be transparent.

  • Resize canvas to 2048x1024 with your image centered.

  • Select the extra space added to bottom of the canvas with the Magic Wand.

  • Use Edit > Content-Aware Fill to fill in that selected area.

  • View > Rulers then right click the ruler and set to Pixels

  • Drag a ruler from the left on to something you know is a cardinal point (N,E,S, or W).

  • You can then look at the top ruler to see how many pixels that is.

  • Use Transform to level the horizon in the middle of the image (512 pixels).

  • You want the bottom half of the image to be landscape and the top half to be transparent, with the exception of any objects that rise above the horizon at your location.

  • File > Export > Export As > mylocation.png

Do maths for the angle_rotatez value:

angle_rotatez = 270 + degrees - (360 * pixels / 2048)

degrees = the value of which ever cardinal point you choose in Photoshop; N=0, E=90, S=180, W=270

pixels = is what you read off the top ruler in Photoshop at the cardinal point

Create the txt file location.ini:


name = My Location

author = Your Name Here

description = Photo taken from my location.

type = spherical

maptex = mylocation.png

angle_rotatez = 200


planet = Earth

latitude = 51d30'5"

longitude = 0d8'30"

altitude = 30


angle_rotatez has to be calculated (or ignored)

latitude and longitude are in degrees, minutes and seconds

altitude is in meters

Load the Files:

Create a MyLocation folder and add the files that you created; mylocation.png and location.ini.

Move that folder to C:\Program Files\Stellarium\landscapes

In Stellarium hit F4 to open the View menu. Click on Landscapes and select your new one.

Sample Files