Under the SNP bridge

I wonder if I noticed things as much, before I became a photographer. Now, when I see a change in a scene I visited before, I see it immediately. I don’t remember it being that way before. I would walk through the city, ignoring everything. I don’t remember ever stopping and just looking at the sunset. Something I do all the time now. Even if I’m not taking photos (and of course, those are the days with best sunset :)). Maybe I just look more for what to take photos off. Probably. Still, I’m glad that I changed. I enjoy every walk through the city that much more.

I took this photo under the SNP bridge few weeks back. There is a new scaffolding there, so looks like they stared a reconstruction on it. A part of the bridge was closed off before, as I think there are building a new cafe/restaurant there. I’m curious what they will do here.

This is a two shot panorama, each shot a blend of three exposures, edited in Photoshop.

Under the SNP bridge, Bratislava, Slovakia

And here are few details:

Under the SNP bridge, Bratislava, Slovakia

Winter reflection

I used this winter reflection photo as an example in a post few days ago, to show how to do HDR/blended panoramas in Photoshop. And since I never posted the finished edit, here it is.

This is a two shot winter panorama each shot from two exposures. I did minimal edits here, mostly just to correct the overexposed areas, correct contrast and add sharpness. That’s it. Recently I try to keep the shots more realistic, and that goes hand in had with doing less in editing.

Winter reflection, Bratislava, Slovakia

And here are few details:

Winter reflection, Bratislava, Slovakia

Topaz JPEG to RAW

I shared my impressions of Topaz JPEG to RAW AI last week with you, but I forgot to mention one thing. Today is the last day it’s offered for the introductory price of 79.99 USD. From midnight it goes to the regular price of 99.99 USD. So if you are interested, now is your chance to get it cheaper. Head over to the Topaz Labs website to order, or download the trial there and give it a try.

Triple blend

When one starts blending exposures, one sometime just blends everything. And that’s the case with today’s photo. I call it a triple blend, because it’s:

  • an exposure blend, as I used two exposures to blend the lights on the castle and church
  • a focus blend, as the foreground and background are focused differently to expand DOF
  • a focal blend, as I zoomed in in the background photo. Like this it’s more dominant in the image, and is not just far in the distance.

Somehow it’s funny as one uses all there techniques, that one stops even thinking about them anymore. One just does it automatically.

Snow covered

I posted a similar photo last week, but I liked them both so here is another one. As snow is not that common in Bratislava, in the last few years, I had to take as many photos as I could of it. I don’t think there will be much more this year. And snow covered rocks at the Danube make for such a nice foreground subject.

As I mentioned, this is a blend of three exposures. It’s a vertorama where the top part is a blend of two exposures, and the bottom part is a single exposure. I combined them manually in Photoshop. It’s pretty simple, as the middle is a river, so you just blend them using a layer mask and a bit of painting with the brush. You can’t use any panorama software if you want to do a focal blend, as they will not align the photos that way.

Snow covered, Bratislava, Slovakia

Learning Japanese

JapaneseHow are you goals for this year coming along? Maybe you remember I mentioned mine at the start of the year, and it was to learn Japanese language. And I’m quite happy, that I’m still sticking to it, just finished the first book from the Japanese from Zero series, and onto the next one. Still so much to learn. But it’s really nice now, when I watch a Japanese TV show or a movie, that I already can understand something here and there. And when sitting in a bus or train, the word repetition through Anki just make a trip fly by.

So what about you? How are you goals coming long? :)

Panorama at the Danube

This is another panorama I took last Monday down at the Danube river. The Danube was actually quite calm. This made the reflections nice an visible. I used steps that are at the shore there, to get completely down to the water and took a photo from there. There were few more spots I wanted to go to, I just could not find the steps there. There are multiple there, but under the snow, it was a bit dangerous to get down to the water, and I did not want to risk it. It happened to me once already that my foot slipped in between the rocks there, and that was without the snow. Better safe then sorry. One has to be always careful.

This is a three shot panorama, combined in Lightroom, edited in Photoshop.

Panorama at the Danube, Bratislava, Slovakia

And here are few details:

Panorama at the Danube

Focus blending

I wrote about focus blending a really long time ago, but as today’s photo is a really nice simple example, let’s shortly go over it here. With one part really close to the camera, the other far away, it’s really easy to blend them together if there is only water in between. The water will mostly not be sharp anyway, so you can just do one shot focused on the back and one at the foreground. Then just load both into Photoshop and using a simple graduated mask, blend them together.

I did the same for today’s photo, just with a small difference. I did it as a vertorama, where I changed focus between the shots. Some panorama programs will not merge a photo like this, but as I said, it’s easy to do it manually.

Snow covered rocks at the Danube

Behind the cameraIt was snowing quite a lot in Bratislava on Monday, but as the evening came, it all started melting. So I just had to go out to take few snowy photos before it all went away. I wanted a new nice photo of the snow cowered rocks at the Danube, and as the river is quite low right now, I got them.

This is a two shot vertorama, where I used two exposures for the top part (because I needed to tone down the bright lights of the castle) and one shot for the bottom part. Edited in Photoshop.

Snow covered rocks at the Danube
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