Some weeks seem to take longer to get to Friday, but once it’s here, everything is all right. Happy Friday everyone.
How about something completely different for today? I’ve been wanting to create this shot for a while now, and even though I took it a few weeks ago, I didn’t get around to processing it until yesterday. Back in mid March I finally got my iPad 2 (didn’t have the first one) and I wanted to take advantage of the camera that it is equipped with. Now, just because I have an iPhone, iPod, iPad 2 and an iMac does not make me one of those people who denounce all that technology that is not Apple. I thoroughly enjoy all my Apple products, but can still see the benefit and advantages of those non Apple devices and have no problem with anyone who uses them. Not trying to turn this into a Mac vs. PC debate, just wanted to throw my stance out there.
For this scene, I first took a shot of myself holding both my iPhone and iPod. Easy enough, took me one try. Now for the tricky part. I had to take a picture of the iPad in front of me, showing my face on the screen, looking towards one of my other Apple devices. This took me about half an hour to get right. I was having problems getting the iPad lined up right where my head didn’t look freakishly small. I still actually had to do some work in post to enlarge the picture of me holding the iPad, which made the iPad look just a liiiiittle bit bigger than it really is. Regardless of that, I like how it turned out.
Other than that, just had some fun with filters in Color Efex and onOne PhotoTools. In CE, I added the vignette and a Tonal Contrast filter, as well as a Pro Contrast one. In onOne, I applied the Blue Dawn Leonidas, Turbo Boost and a Noir one (can’t remember the exact name).
That’s it for me this week. See you guys and gals on Monday.
Yeah, I know, I know, I missed a post yesterday. We have been a bit busy at work lately, as we are moving to a new building, and we are currently the last ones in the old building, so there is a lot to get done. Back on the wagon today.
Last night I had the pleasure of attending the Elton John concert at the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh. Now, I am a huge classic rock fan, and while I do enjoy Elton’s music, he wouldn’t be in my top 10 of favorite musicians, but let me say this: It was awesome. I mean, he really rocked the stage, it was incredible to watch him play, overall an immensely entertaining show. He kept the crowd engaged, standing up and acknowledging all four sides of the stage after every song and even took the time to sign autographs before his encore, probably about fifty or so people that he let come up and stand by the stage for his last few songs, which included Bennie and the Jets and Crocodile Rock, along with his encore of Your Song. Shots from this concert were taken with a Canon S95.
I did find the concert very enjoyable…except for the eight songs that he did with Leon Russell right in the middle of the show. I know that Russell is a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, but it just really seemed to detract from the energetic vibe of the rest of the show. The songs were slow, very few people knew them, as they were from the collaborative new album between Elton and Russell. Other than that, awesome show.
Back in August, on opening night of the CONSOL Energy Center, before any hockey game had been played, I was in attendance to see former Beatle Paul McCartney. In regards to entertainment, Sir Paul most definitely put on the best show I have ever been to. It also helped that I knew the majority of the songs played and could sing along (not that anyone would want to hear that), but being able to see a legend like McCartney, that is a once in a lifetime thing, at least at this point in his career. For this concert I had my Canon S90.
Finally, last March we attended an Eric Clapton concert at the old Civic Arena. I know that I just said McCartney put on the best show ever, but Clapton’s music was just mesmerizing. When they showed his hands making that guitar sing like it wasn’t anything at all was truly something special. Clapton is not the same kind of entertainer as Elton and Paul, but he put on one hell of a show and I would gladly go back to see him again. Didn’t have a great camera with my this time though, so just iPhone shots for this one.
I am very fortunate that I was able to see three of the great rock/pop musicians of our time in my hometown. I don’t go to many concerts, but when I do, I make it worthwhile.
Speaking of these Pittsburgh hockey arenas and to go along with the nighttime Pittsburgh skyline, here is a shot of both. I took this a few weeks into the season form the upper parking lot above the Civic Arena and had to hold up a lot of traffic to do so. People honking, yelling, screaming while I just threw up my hands and said, “It’s bracketing nine exposures at night, it takes a lot time, what do you want me to do?” One way to shut people up is just to confuse them!
Tomorrow’s Friday. Woo hoo.
I really can’t help but at least talk about the Pens for a little bit after a game. Although they lost again last night, which is getting to be a common theme with the rash of injuries they’ve had, there were some sparks in the lineup that certainly give you some optimism. Tyler Kennedy, on a bit of a tear as of late, scored two goals, and Marc Andre Fleury looked absolutely brilliant in the loss. The goals, a one timer from behind the net on a power play, a bad bounce that game right to a Shark who jammed it home, and a scrum in front of the net with Fleury down, can be easily forgiven. The offense has to get going though, averaging only 2 goals a game since the departure of Sidney Crosby, last in league by a long shot. I’m not giving up on the season yet. Let’s go Pens.
Some shots from the game last night. The first one is a thirty image panorama that I took with the iPhone and stitched with AutoStitch. I think that it game out pretty cool. The second one is a tilt shift that I took with the S95, as that is a custom scene on the phone. Also not too shabby.
Like I said a few days ago, I was finally able to get out shooting this weekend. Got up real early on Saturday at 6, grabbed the gear, and rolled out downtown. I had this vision of the sunrise coming up over the city and me standing at the Point, where the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers join to form the Ohio. However, I got downtown, which was eerily empty, seeing as it was 6:30 on a Saturday morning, and realized that that just wasn’t going to work. There are still doing construction at the Point, and it really detracted from the picture. Ok, on to Plan B. I headed over the Fort Duquesne Bridge towards Heinz Field, and the view down the river was stunning. The moon was huge in the sky, the colors were all kinds of shades of pastels and the water was nice and calm in the river. Got a few shots, then headed over my destination, right below the Clemente Bridge. Set up the tripod, snapped a few pre sunrise shots and waited. I saw the sun starting to come and thought, “It has to peak around the buildings soon.” I look behind me, and see it is already shining on the building that I was standing in front of. So I back up 10 feet, and lo and behold, there is the sun, streaming through the Rachel Carson Bridge. “Um yeah, I’ll take an order of sun flares, no thanks, no halos for me today.”
This is a seven exposure HDR processed under the Clean setting on HDR Efex. After cleaning up all the dust spots in the sky (yes I forget to clean the sensor before I went out. Come on, it was 6:00 a.m. on a Saturday. Gimme a break.) I could go to work. First, I selected the tree and recovered some of the shadows on it. I wanted it to be silhouetted, just not as much as it was. I added a green curves level to enhance the grass and the bushes, as well as did selective coloring to give the sun a more reddish tint, as it was a bit too yellow for my liking. Kicked it over the Color Efex where I added a Tonal Contrast layer on everything but the sky, and finally added some High Park Sharpening. I really like the result, one of my favorite shots that haven’t been from New York in a while.
That about wraps it up for today. One more day til Friday.
Ok, so the last time I posted a picture before the Pen’s game I went to they lost. But, seeing as I don’t believe in superstition, I figured I would try it again! This is a panorama of Mellon Arena from my iPhone, then put through the Tilt Sihift generator app to come up with this. I thought it looked pretty cool!
Tonight we play the Caps for the first time since we destroyed them 6-1 in Game 7 of last year’s semis. I have been looking forward to this game all year!!
We are riding a 6-4 win the other night against the Islanders, a great back and forth game. The Devils have been on a bit of a slide as well, and since they are ahead of us, that’s a good thing!!!
LET’S GO PENS!!!!