Well, today is my 100th post on my blog. Of the last 99, 26 of them were from 2009 and 2010 combined with the rest coming this year, which is kind of crazy, given the fact that I just started really committing to my blog in late January. Daily traffic to my blog has tripled since then as well, so I just wanted to take the time to thank everyone who is a regular visitor and also those of you who just mosey on by every once and while. I really appreciate all the support I receive from everyone. Here’s to another couple hundred. Or thousand.
Today’s shot is one that I really don’t even remember taking. I mean, I can believe I took it, but as I was looking through my pictures from Mt. Washington I saw it and thought, “Huh”. So I went ahead and processed it and really liked the way that it came out. This is a view up the Monongahela River, one of the two rivers that meet at the Point to form the Ohio River. You also get a view of some of the distinct bridges we have in the city (from bottom to top, excluding the second from the bottom which is the trolley bridge): Smithfield Street, Liberty, 10th Street and Birmingham. In the center of the shot you can see the Allegheny County Jail (which you also saw a few posts ago) and in the foreground is the top of the Grand Concourse in Station Square. Off in the distance is the top of the Cathedral of Learning, the iconic building on the campus of the University of Pittsburgh in Oakland. All that being said, I think my favorite thing about this shot is the shadow that is created by the city lights of the trolley bridge on the water. You would normally expect to see reflections, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the shadows.
On to the processing. This is a seven exposure HDR processed with Photomatix. It was a bit flat coming out of the tonemapping, so I applied an S curve to bring back some of the contrast. I applied a Pro Contrast filter in Color Efex, as well as a warming filter in Photoshop to cool the entire image. In onOne PhotoTools I used the Progressive Sharpening filter to being out some details and the Firenza filter to also cool down the blues. A bit of spot healing in the sky to get rid of some dust specks and that was that.
Again, thank you for all of your support on my last 100 posts. I hope that you all will continue to follow me in the future.
So I went to my second Pirates game of the year last night, actually it was my second in less than a month, which hasn’t happened in years. The first game I went to was great; there was a beer tasting before the game, they Buccos jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first and they ended up winning. Last night? Not to much. Got stomped by the Dodgers 10-3, and looked very much like the sub-.500 ball club that they’ve looked like for the last 20 years, taking up permanent residence in the bottom half of the standings. I did, however, get a ton of great shots, which I will share with you in the next few days.
For now, how about another view of the city? This is more of what I was talking about yesterday in taking a different approach to shooting from Mt. Washington. In the center of this shot is actually the new Allegheny County Jail (by new I mean newer), which is right along the parkway that leads you out of the ‘Burgh to the east. I thought that it was pretty cool how you can see four different levels of streets, two above the jail and two below it, and light trails on all of them. The street that I find the most interesting is the one that is directly behind the jail, as it is one continuous streak all the way along the road. The three bridges you see here are (in order from bottom to top) the Liberty Bridge, which takes you to the South Hills (where I live), the 10th Street Bridge (which takes you from the end of the South Side to downtown) and the Birmingham Bridge, which also connects the South Side to the bottom of Oakland, where the University of Pittsburgh is located. The bridge at the very bottom of the frame isn’t a bridge for cars; it connects the trolley line from Station Square to downtown Pittsburgh.
This is a seven exposure HDR processed in Photomatix and Photoshop CS5. I first tonemapped the +2 exposure to get the light trails I wanted and masked in all the roads. I did a color cast removal of the blues/purples in Color Efex as well as add a Tonal Contrast layer. In onOne PhotoTools I added a sharpening layer and another filter tha cooled the reds and warmed the blues. Finally, I did some selective coloring on the reds (decreased saturation) and the greens (increased vibrance and saturation). Added the logo and uploaded.
Halfway there guys. Friday will be here soon. Until tomorrow though, adios.