Mar 202011

Knox Heritage is sponsoring a photography contest with the subjects being buildings that are at least 50 years old in a certain section of old town. I decided to go out today and see what I could come up with. I took HDR brackets for everything just in case, but it turned out that in most cases I didn’t need to. So far, I’ve come up with on shot I might submit and another one that I like though I’ll have to read the rules to see if it would even be eligible. Probably not, but again, I like it.

First up, the one I might submit. Click on it to see it full size.

I’m reasonably happy with it with a couple of exceptions. First, the sides of the buildings are cropped pretty tight, but that was a necessity to apply perspective correction and keep the building from leaning. Also, you can’t see the bottom of the building but that was because I chose to shoot from the Gay Street Viaduct and there is a two story building between my camera and the street. I did that to have less perspective correction rather than shooting at street level from right in front of the building and asking Photoshop to twist and stretch things to look sort of straight. I think it was the right call. I just don’t know if the judges will agree. I guess there is one other thing. My Photoshop skills aren’t quite up to removing the street light. I might try it on a copy of the photo in a few days.

Here’s the other one. Again, click to see full size.

Can you guess the name of this building? When I was walking past, I liked how I could see into the top floor windows and see the skylight on the other wall. Unfortunately, I guess I wasn’t lined up quite in the middle of the sign so it looks a little off to me. On the other hand, had I been perfectly lined up, I’m not entirely sure I’d have been able to see the skylight through the window which is what drew me to it in the first place. This final image is a combination of processing the original image two different ways. The building was run through the spicify filter in Topaz Adjust which did really do a great job of bringing out details in the brickwork. The sky was also processed with Topaz Adjust though I can’t remember now which filter/setting.

Jul 232010

I ‘ve spent quite a bit of time tonight getting ready for the county fair coming up in September. I’ve decided to submit at least 3 of my images to the photography contest. One of them will be the flower shot that I blogged about a few days ago (Post Title: The Power of White Balance). The other is an HDR shot I took while at the Mayan ruins of Kohunlich. While there are certainly ruins in the background, the main subject is actually a very pretty tree.

In my opinion, this photo loses some if its impact shrunk down to the size needed to fit in the blog. I think it will look pretty cool in print. I just hope the petals pop as nicely on paper as they do on the screen.

What you don’t see is the headache I went through getting these two images ready to send to MPix. The fair requires that all photos be mounted on 15X19 to 16X20 foam core. I chose 16X20 because that’s a standard photo size and I can have MPix mount it for me. Now, neither of these photos are at their best cropped to 16X20. I wanted to print them so the long edge of each would be roughly 16 to 18 inches and then have a black border around the rest. I won’t go into details, but suffice it to say that no matter what I tried, I could not get the MPix ROES software to do what I wanted to do. I ended up going into Photoshop and creating a black 16X20 image layer and then adding my new image as a new layer above it and positioning it where I wanted it.

Of course, my other option would have been to print at a smaller size and take the print to a local place to have it matted (or attempted to figure out how to mat it myself). It might have been a little cheaper, but I just felt like since I was placing these images in competition, I wanted them to be presented as professionally as possible.

In other photography-related news, tomorrow I’ll be heading out to Market Square to participate in Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photowalk. It starts at 9:00 but I plan to get there early and get my photo-mojo warmed up a little early. I’m hoping to get another shot or two for the fair. I’m going to keep my eye out for interesting architecture, inanimate objects, and candids of people going about their business. It should be a lot of fun!