I seem to always have this backlog of photos to deal with. A couple of weeks ago I went on two photography meetup events. Processing them was quick, but posting them was not.
The first one was a nighttime wander down the river that cuts through the Chicago Loop. This one was actually quite a bit of fun as we had dinner and a few drinks and then set out. Which means I actually talked to a few people. The only real annoying bit was google maps took me to the wrong part of Dearborne St and I had to walk quite a bit to get there. In rather uncomfortable shoes (my fault) on a bit too warm of a day.
As with any mix of levels of “artists” there were some snobby people and some rather nice ones. Granted after seeing the uploaded photos, I can see why some of them were a bit far on the snobby side, even if they were post-possessed a bit further than my tastes. Anyways, I did have quite a bit of fun. I even got to help some people with focus and colour correction which of course made my night.
Camera: Pentax K10D. Bracketing: 5 shots at 1 stop difference. Programs Used: Photomatix & Photoshop
As with the last night shoot I did, I set up for HDR. Upped the saturation of the highlights and lowered in the shadows. I then played with my new favourite slider: Vibrance. It does what I always wished saturation to do: up the saturation of the exact colours I want while leaving the others alone. It’s not like I can tell to pick certain colours but that’s pretty much what it does.
Vibrance: Adjusts the saturation so that clipping is minimized as colors approach full saturation. This setting changes the saturation of all lower-saturated colors with less effect on the higher-saturated colors. Vibrance also prevents skin tones from becoming oversaturated.
What the documentation doesn’t tell you is that if you are doing a night shoot on white/gray stone buildings, they will have an orange tint. And they don’t naturally look like that. So if you lower the vibrance, it’ll tone that down while leaving the cool looking blue lights. Epic win.
Before the sky had gone fully dark.
Now that the weather is turning for the better, I’ll hopefully be taking more pictures. While it hadn’t fully gotten to as warm as it is now, it was still decent enough to stand outside for a couple of hours taking pictures during this event.
For quite a while I’ve been meaning to go on one of the Chicagoland Digital Photography Meetup Group’s events, but most of them start off a bit too early on a Saturday for me. With travel time most of them I’d have to be up at 7am, which isn’t all that easy for me to do. The others would be outside in the cold/rain/snow/wind or at a place I just couldn’t get to via public transport.
It was nice in the fact that they picked a really awesome spot to photograph the skyline and seeing that many photographers doing the same thing, but I didn’t actually speak to a single person. And as far as I could tell, that was the same for most. Granted if I had a question I’m certain people would have been more than happy to help, but I did my research on nighttime skyline photography before I left. And my camera is pretty easy to set and test white balance. So… meh… I think I’ll just continue to use it the way that I do: finding good locations to go shoot.
March 27th was a global event called Earth Hour, that is organized by the World Wildlife Fund. For 1 hour non-essential lights are turned off to raise awareness of the need to take action on climate change.
Now, I hadn’t taken skyline pictures before. Mostly because I finally just got a tripod. (remember I just got back into photography so no shaming me tyvm). So that was a challenge. The next challenge was taking skyline photos when a decent amount of the building were to be in the dark.
What I opted for was to set up for HDR and hope for the best really. All that means is turning on auto bracketing. Pretty simple and it saved my ass on most of the pictures, especially as more buildings turned off the lights. All of these didn’t end up being processed as HDR (or at least saved that way) but it did give me more to play with in the end.