Weekly Photo Challenge: Bridge

Sometimes a photo challenge theme fits nicely into work that I have in progress.  This past weekend I was in London, in part to see Tower Bridge:

ISO 250 20mm 1/2000 f/8.0

Recently I purchased a new lens, it’s a wide angle lens, 11-22mm, to complement my 50mm and 70-200mm lens.  I am thinking of using this lens mostly for landscapes. I will also be pressing it into service in city settings. In particular shots taken in the interior of buildings where my 50mm struggles to get the whole of what I am trying to capture. A wide angle lens can also be used to create a beautifully different perspective of a scene:

ISO 250 14mm 1/800 f/8.0

These photos are two of one hundred and fifteen that I took of the bridge.  Getting the pictures home, I put them in Lightroom, which is always my first step.  I have taken a look through all the images and these two above are among the images that I may edit later; as seen above they are not edited at all.  I will keep them in this state for awhile.  I find it helpful to have some time between my shoot and when I edit.  I find it hard to be objective about them when they are newly shot. Although eventually most of the photos will be deleted, nothing has been deleted yet. Photos I take with my larger camera are on the slow track in terms of my editing process.

The fast track consists of photos that I take on my phone.  They are often taken and then processed or discarded within twenty four hours.  This one was a keeper:

The view of one #London landmark from another. #towerbridge as seen from the #toweroflondon

A post shared by Amy Maranto (@marantophotography) on

A successful photo on my phone is often an overview photo like this one.  More detailed photos I usually shoot with my larger camera.  I find it helpful to have both cameras with me, I find it creates a more complete narrative.

Do you shoot a single scene with more than one camera? Do you have a different approach to editing photos that are created out of your different cameras?  And yes, those first two photos really are unedited, it really was that bright and sunny in London last Sunday! Feel free to leave a comment below.



When image editing runs amuck

I took some photos last week of a beautiful backlit wildflower.  That was the quick and easy part.  I am currently taking a photoshop class, so I have been busy editing everything.  When I took the photo, I had split toning in mind. Sonel hosts a weekly split toning challenge and the theme this week was flowers.  Here is my final image:

ISO 160 50mm 0ev f/5 1/125

ISO 160 50mm 0ev f/5 1/125

The “problem” with Photoshop is that you could muck around with a photo pretty much forever.  I put problem in quotes because I am quite aware that is a user induced problem; the Photoshop program is also happy to sit idle on your machine.

But back to this image.  I liked the photos I had taken of this flower, but I was wondering if I could get a more detailed result by creating an HDR image.  So, I tried it and here is the result:

ISO 160 50mm 0ev f/5 1/125

ISO 160 50mm 0ev f/5 1/125

It is pretty, but I was really looking to bring out some detail in the center of the flower, so I considered this a partial success.  I then shifted my focus back to split toning.  I opened this HDR image in Bridge and converted it to greyscale.  Then I looked at my split toning options.  I decided to make the highlights red and the shadows yellow.  I still was not completely happy with the center of the flower. So, I opened my photo as a smart object in Photoshop.  Once I had done that, in the layers panel I clicked the make copy via smart object option.  I did this because I knew that I could then take my copy back into Camera Raw, adjust the exposure for the center of the flower, and then go back into Photoshop.  Then I made a mask and keep the center only of that version for my final version.  Once I had the flower looking the way I wanted, I cropped and sharpened the image.

That’s a lot of editing for a flower.  More than I really was thinking when I took the photo.  How about you, have you ever gone overboard with your editing?  What do you think of my final images? do you prefer one over the other? questions about my editing? Your comments are welcome below.

Travel Theme: Bridges

The theme this week at Where’s my backpack? is bridges.  I’m not a huge fan of heights as I have written about before, so usually my focus is to just get across the bridge and be done with it.  I am happy to say that there was one time at least where I took the time to appreciate the bridge.  It was at Fundy National Park in Nova Scotia.  If you happen to click on that link to the park, you will see another picture of this covered bridge:


Landscape Photograph

In my digital photography class we are covering landscape photography at the moment.  I also bought Photomatix this week.  What you get is this photo:

ISO 200 f/22 1/13 28mm

I used a tripod to get the original  three photos that were shot in color.  I combined the images and put them in black and white in Photomatix.  Fun stuff!