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Panoramic images of the war by Dmytro Malyshev

A house damaged by a rocket attack in Kyiv. Photo by Dmytro Malyshev

Dmytro Malyshev is a photographer, recently a member of the UAPF, who has been engaged in panoramic photography for over 10 years. Since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Dmytro has been documenting the consequences of Russian crimes in VR. So far, he has taken more than 1700 panoramic photographs in more than 30 locations.

Page, which publishes panoramic photos of the war in Ukraine

«VR  це дуже корисний сервіс, який може повністю показати зруйновані об'єкти і знищені населені пункти. Він дає унікальні можливості для відображення конкретного місця. На мій погляд, це найбільш емоційний формат, який може перенести людину в це місце, в цю локацію, і дати змогу відчути все те, що там коїлось», — говорить Дмитро. 


Фотограф зауважує, що робить не просто панорамні знімки, а сферичні: «Тобто така зйомка охоплює 360 градусів. Як воно виглядає? Уявіть собі таку кулю, всередині якої знаходиться глядач і дивиться навкруги, тобто бачить простір навколо. Так людина може зануритися в певну локацію: бути в цій зруйнованій і згорілій квартирі. По факту людина сама стає режисером, обираючи бажаний ракурс. Вона може все роздивитись навколо себе. Вона може глянути собі під ноги й побачити залишки особистих речей мешканців. А потім може підняти голову вверх і побачити поламані перекриття, які нависають над нею». 

Dmytro started doing panoramic photography in 2013 and virtual tours in 2015, when Google Street View came to Ukraine. Google Street View is a panoramic street view feature around the world provided through Google Maps and Google Earth extensions.

"Since 2016, together with the Ukrainian office of Google Street View, we have filmed many objects. We have even filmed the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, and many other things. At the same time, I was approached by Antonov, and I filmed the Ukrainian Mriya airplane. It was a virtual tour: both outside and inside. The passenger compartment, the cockpit, and everything else was filmed."

The destroyed Mriya airplane at the Gostomel airfield. Photo by Dmytro Malyshev

Of all the shoots Dmytro has ever done, documenting the destroyed Mriya in VR was the most emotional moment for him. In 2016, he was proud to have been given the opportunity to make the world's only virtual tour of the largest cargo plane, which was created by Ukrainians. Even before the invasion, Dmytro had been negotiating with Antonov to update the virtual tour, as technical progress had been made over the past few years. New and better lenses and software have appeared, so it was possible to shoot the Ukrainian Mriya even better. The photographer did get access to the shooting in 2022, but with a different goal.

A house destroyed by an air strike in Gostomel. Photo by Dmytro Malyshev

All panoramas can be viewed in more detail on the project website -

"The broken, burned, and blown up Mriya, the AN-225 airplane. Antonov and I had big plans for 2022, but I had to shoot what I call a dead Mriya. Of course, when I got to this location, I'll be honest, I had tears in my eyes. I was standing there, looking at her, and she was lying there like a human being, just dead. I was in complete shock, how could this be allowed to happen, because the AN-225 is the property not only of Ukraine, but of the whole world. It was very emotional for me," Dmytro admits.

The photographer actively takes panoramic images and virtual tours for the project, created by Taras Volianiuk. This is a map where you can see the consequences of Russian aggression in certain locations: "This is a story that needs to be recorded. This is a documentary so that people don't forget. This is the idea behind the project," says Dmytro.

The team mainly shoots civilian infrastructure destroyed or damaged by Russians: schools, kindergartens, and apartment buildings. For security reasons, Dmytro never covers anything related to military facilities that could threaten national security.

Unfortunately, the war continues, and Russians are shelling Ukrainians every day, which means that the number of places that need to be digitally recorded is also growing. Dmytro says that people's feedback gives him strength to continue working in this direction.

The destroyed residential complex "Irpinsky Lipki" in Irpin. Photo by Dmytro Malyshev

"We've had cases where people commented on the places we've photographed. For example, when we published pictures from the village of Dovhenske in Kharkiv region, people started writing: "This is my grandmother's house," "My husband died not far from this house." Someone wrote: "We had a defense there." And once a teacher of a destroyed school wrote: "We cooked food for the military in this school until the last moment," he says.

When asked what exactly Dmytro dreams of filming in VR, he answered Mariupol and Crimea: "When Google Street View entered Ukraine in 2015, the Russians had already annexed Crimea. And there are a lot of incredible tourist, historical, and cultural places there. This is a simple dream."


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