Wednesday, November 7, 2007

#13 Horse Heaven Sunrise

I got up at 6:00 and went up to the Horse Heaven Ridge that overlooked Prosser, WA to get a good shot of the sunrise. It was about 30 degrees F and the wind was blowing about 25 mph. Ruined my UV filter on my 17-55 lens with the sand blowing around. Got out of there and drove down through the city and found this. I really liked the color. There is nothing like the gold color of fresh hay

Photograph EXIF info: Canon 20D using EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS at 17mm for 1/100s @ f/5.0, iso=400.

Location and date: 7th and Stacy Ave, Prosser, Washington at 7:37am on 11/2/2007.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

#12 The Cloud that Ate Seattle. August 15, 2007


I really like this shot. I took it on the ferry last weekend and I hope to show how to turn a flat uninteresting shot into something with a little more punch. First I have to tell you that this is the shot that I saw even when looking through the viewfinder. I love clouds and really like how they can add drama to a shot. The second point I would like to make is that I was wearing my polarized sunglasses so the clouds looked more dramatic to me but not to my camera since I do not have a polarized filter for this lens. Note to self: need to buy a polarized filter for this lens. (expensive!) So knowing how the clouds looked, I set out to make the shot from the camera more like the picture I saw in my mind's eye.

OK here is the original shot:

As you can see this is really flat and uninteresting. By just applying curves and some sharpening we get the finished shot in about 5 minutes. OK first, we apply curves and get this.

From here, we do a lot of smart sharpening and we get the original - simple. There are other things I could do with the shot. There is some vignetting at the top and the space needle on the far left bottom seems to be suffering from some pincushion effect. Those could be easily fixed.

Photograph EXIF info
Canon 20D using EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS at 18mm for 1/800s @ f/6.3, iso=100.

One last thing. As I was looking at the shot I noticed a flaw right above the center of the city in the sky. (Above the white topped building in the center of the city about a 1/4 of the way to the top of the sky.) I thought at first I had a dead pixel but it moved with the page. So I went to the original and this is what I found.

I think that's pretty cool. It really shows the resolving power of a good digital camera and good lens. It also shows how good image stabilization works. I shot this handheld on the deck on a vibrating ferry.

p.s. There is a black dot to the right of the plane above the tallest black tower, right between two clouds - that's a twin rotor helicopter.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

#11 Detail of Lookin' for a handout.


This is detail shot of one of two gulls in a larger original shot, which can been seen here

This looks like a fairly old seagull. Looks like this guy as seen a lot. I don't believe that I over-sharpened the shot, this guy is just kind of beat up...

A favorite family activity is to take a ferry ride. This weekend we took the ferry from Seattle to Bremerton. My kids started to feed the gulls then other people started also. Late in the evening the sun was setting in back of the ship, we were standing in the front and these gulls where coming in and out of the sunlight as it was blocked by the boat - made for a dramatic shot.

Photoshop: Actually not a lot was done to this shot. I applied very slight shadow/highlight, curves and smart sharpen. That's it. It really does not look that much different from the raw capture, just a little more punch.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

#9 Sunset Sail. July 21, 2007


After being boatless in Seattle for the past year, I have gotten the bug to dive into boat ownership again. A really nice J/29 came up for sale and I gave the owner a call and took a sail on it during a race this week. The boat is really fast and really nice. We took the gun (first across the finish line) and won the race. Although this was just a beer can race.

During the race a storm passed close buy and I took this picture of one of our competitors sailing to windward of us. (What a Tripp, Peterson 37) Anyway, buying a boat is the easy part, finding a place to moor it is a whole different problem. There are no places to moor a boat in Seattle.

Photoshop on this Picture:
I did a lot of adjustments to this picture, but in the end, it does not look much different from the original shot. I tried to improve it but I just kept pulling the opacity of my adjustments down so far that they only change the picture very slightly. The most significant change would be the sharpening and curves adjustment.

Monday, July 16, 2007

#8 Michigan Cold Front


Cold front moving into Frankenmuth, Michigan near sunset.

Camera: Canon 20D, EF-S 17-55 f/2.8IS @ 17mm
Exposure: 1/13s at f/6.3
ISO: 100
Taken: 7/12/2007 @ 8:10pm EDT.

Photoshop: You can see the original shot with the photoshop layers below. Created house layer to bring out and lighten up the house. Background copy was used to convert image to black and white via channel mixer. Also applied curves adjustment and used the highlight and shadow tool. Note mask on layer.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

#7 Rainier Sky

Taken above Paradise on the slopes of Rainier on July 1, 2007.

Camera: Canon 20D, EF-S 17-55 f/2.8IS @ 17mm
Exposure: 1/1000s at f/9
ISO: 100

Photoshop: Applied shadow/highlight filter to bring out the sky. Over sharpened the clouds to pop them from the blue sky and give them some texture. Used channel mixer to create a B&W image but applied a gradient mask so that only the bottom would go to B&W. Final curves adjustment to create more drama. See Photoshop screen grab below. Layers turned off to display original shot.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

#5 Icefall. May 13, 2007


This is one of my favorite shots from this last winter (2/10/07). My daughter at the bottom of the ice waterfall at Ingrid's Inspiration, Alpental, Summit at Snoqualmie, Washington.

Photoshop: Slight curves and shadow/highlight adjustment.

Canon A530 Powershot P&S
Exposure: 1/125s, f/2.6, 5.8mm
Auto Mode - snow.

#4 Mississippi Sunset. May 13, 2007


From about 35,000 feet. Racing the sunset from Chicago back home to Seattle. I took some pictures out the window. I really liked this one of the Mississippi River which you can see right under the wing. The picture is more noisy than I would like. Would have been better off if I would have taken my 20D with me.

Photoshop: Move to LAB colorspace to bring out the color. Curves adjustment in LAB in "a" and "b" channels to bring out the colors, sharpened in the lightness channel. Reduced noise with the reduce noise filter.

Canon A530 Powershot P&S
Exposure: 1/60s, f/2.6, 5.8mm
Auto Mode

Friday, May 11, 2007

#3 Catching up... May 11, 2007


This is the second in my trilogy series of gull shots. This one was pumping his/her wings hard to catch up the ferry to maybe get a treat from my sons.

Photoshop: Cropped, convert to LAB color space, applied curves, converted to RGB, apply curves and slight sharpen

Canon 20D, EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS @ 55mm
Exposure: 1/1600s, f/3.5, ISO 100
Aperture Priority

#2 Snoqualmie Falls at Flood. May 11, 2007


Snoqualmie Falls, Snoqualmie, Washington. We had some pretty serious floods during the fall of 2006. These falls are 270 feet high, with all the water flowing over the falls they don't look that high but if you look at the bottom of the valley, middle right side of the picture you can see some fairly big logs that have been washed down the falls. Shot this a little after 8am on November 11, 2006.

Photoshop: Converted to LAB color space. Curves adjustment in LAB. Converted back to RGB. Cropped and straighten, minor shadow/highlight adjustment, pushed the saturation a little to bring back the red bush. No sharpening.

Canon 20D, EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS @ 17mm
Exposure: 0.8s, f/22, ISO 400
Aperture Priority

Thursday, May 10, 2007

#1 Gliding on by... May 10, 2007


My sons were feeding the gulls off the back of the Seattle to Winslow ferry. This particular gull just glided by the upper deck, not more than 10 feet from the side of the boat. The gulls were catching a free ride, "surfing" the wave of air the ferry was pushing up as a result of moving over the water at about 20 knots.

I am guessing this is either a Thayer's Gull or a Glaucous-Winged Gull - I think I will go with Glaucous-Winged Gull - appropriate name, Larus glaucescens. Anyone think different?

Photoshop: Cropped slightly, moved the gull from center to the lower third of the frame, adjusted color and contrast using shadow/highlight filter and curves - the day was pretty monochromatic. Applied a small amount of smart sharpen.

Canon 20D, EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS @ 55mm
Exposure: 1/800s, f/3.5, ISO 100
Aperture Priority

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