HDR Photography and More by Dave DiCello

Posts tagged “trolley

Shallow steps

This morning I added another piece to my photo editing arsenal which already includes Color Efex, Silver Efex, HDR Efex, Photomatix, Photoshop CS4 and CS5 and now…the onOne Photo Suite.  I’m pretty excited, especially because yesterday morning I had never even heard of the software, downloaded it last night and get the license before the sales expired.  Definitely worth picking up, as you can save over $150 right now.  Sale said it ended yesterday, but it’s still on their website this morning.

Onto to today’s shot.  I just have one upload today, but I wanted to thank all of you who visited my Seas of gold post yesterday.  I think that I am going to be in the market for a fisheye lens soon, as I really liked the way that the Heinz Field panorama turned out.  I may rent one first, just to make sure that I like it.  And so I have something to pass the time before mine gets here.

This is a shot that I took a few weeks ago while moseying through downtown on one of the first nice days we’ve had in Pittsburgh this spring.  In the Steel City, we don’t have a subway, but we do have a trolley.  It’s a bit limited on where you can take it to and from, unless you live in the South Hills of Pittsburgh, which I do.  If that’s the case, then you are good to go.  There are about four stops within a mile of my house, the T (as it is affectionately known) will take you to Station Square or one of four other locations downtown.  This shot is of one of those stops, well, at least the steps down to one of the stops.

One thing that I like about the 16-35 lens is the slight distortion you get at the wide end, which you can clearly see here on the first few steps.  Also, for just being an f4 lens, the depth of field and bokeh can be quite good as well.  When I got my D700 I tossed around the idea of getting the 14-24, which I may end up eventually getting, but I didn’t like the idea of having to lug around a camera that had the lens hood permanently attached.  I know, I know, a fisheye has one attached as well, but the 14-24 is a bit of a monster.

Anyways, this is a five exposure HDR processed with Photomatix.  Just did some slight curves adjustments and added a little vignette to bring the focus to the center of the image.

Catch everyone tomorrow, and thanks for the visits.


Looking at the road ahead

I haven’t really talked about the Pens much over the past week and there are a couple of reasons for that.  First, they have only played two games in the past seven days, which has given the banged up team some time to rest.  Second, they haven’t been playing too hot as of yet, but that can be forgiven, as they do have some new guys in the lineup (Alexei Kovalev, James Neal and Mat Niskanen), and it is bound to take a few games for them all to gel with the incumbent team.  We are starting to see a little more chemistry in every game, so the moves of general manager Ray Shero are certainly showing promise.

Today I wanted to address the Sidney Crosby story.  As most people inside of the world of hockey and out know, Sid has been sidelined with a concussion since January 5th of this year, the result of two hits to the head.  The first occurred in the Winter Classic on New Year’s Day, while he was looking back for the puck and David Steckel, who was moving up the ice to go for the puck, caught Crosby blindside with a shoulder to the side of the his head.  Then, in the next game against the Tampa Bay Lightning, Crosby took what looked to be a fairly normal check from Victor Hedman, but his head hit the glass in a bit of a awkward way.  As a side note, neither of these hits were penalized, yet Matt Cookie of the Penguins received a four game suspension for a hit on Fedor Tyutin of the Columbus Blue Jackets that Tytutin saw coming and just neglected to get out of the way.  But that is neither here nor there. 

It was originally thought that Crosby would miss just a week with a mild concussion, however eight and a half weeks later, we still have no word on his status, only that he is “getting better” and hopes to come back this year.  He has been absent from the public eye, which has lead to some wild rumors being thrown around about the actually severity of his injury.  The last thing that we as the fans and more so Sid and the Penguins want to happen is to have him come back too soon and suffer a career threatening injury.

So what does the future hold for the Crosby-less Penguins, who are also missing star center Evgeni Malkin who had season ending knee surgery?  Well, the immediately future is looking better than it did just two weeks ago.  With the aforementioned acquisitions that the Penguins front office has made, it certainly bolsters a lineup that was starting to thin.  Injured players are slowly recovering from injury, like winger Chris Kunitz, Paul Martin, Mark Letestu and Dustin Jeffrey.  They have been getting solid goaltending as of late from Marc Andre Fleury, who has really taken the team on his back over the last few months and allowed the Pens to be in games that they may not typically have been in had he not made some unbelievable saves.  The penalty kill, which struggled for a few games, seems to be playing like the number one unit in the league again.  Jordan Staal has certainly stepped up and embraced his new role as the leader of the team and has certainly gained confidence playing on the first line.

But it’s not the same without Sid the Kid, Hart Trophy winner, Rocket Richard Trophy winner, Stanley Cup Champion, Olympic gold medalist, and frankly the best hockey player in the world.  If he doesn’t come back this year, I’m okay with that.  I will be a Penguin fan my entire life, I want Sid to stay healthy and a Penguin the rest of his long career and I plan on watching all of it.

To go with the theme of the title I thought that I would switch it up today and post a candid from a few weeks back.  I think, subconsciously or not, I’ve been posting one non pager a week, which seems to be a good practice to liven up the stream a bit.  The main types of public transportation in the city of Pittsburgh are buses and the “T”, as it’s known locally.  The T is more or less a trolley that will take you from about fifteen miles south of the city straight into downtown.  I live very close to a few of the stops, so when I go to Penguin games, I simply hop on the T and it drops me right off the next to the arena.  Pretty sweet deal.

This is a candid that I took on one of my rides down to a game.  We were just about to go over the trolley bridge over the Monongahela River into downtown and this guy seemed to be oblivious that I was there.  I wanted to get a picture with the girl behind him and the city bokehed out the window, but I picked a bad seat, as I was sitting right across from them.  Cranked the ISO way up and literally put up the camera up the in the air and clicked the shutter.  Not too bad for “shooting from the shoulder”. 

Just some light processing here.  Desaturated the image to give it a cinematic feel, added a warming layer and a blue curves adjustment layer to enhance, well, the blues.  Gave it a very light Tonal Contrast filter in Color Efex and added the pill box to finish it off.

Hope you all enjoy your Friday and have a great weekend ahead.  Let’s go Pens.


On the right track…

Well, finally posting again!  I mean, how many times can I say that I will be posting more but never do?  I think that I am finally on the right track though.  I signed up and created a site on zenfolio to start selling my work there.  it has been a great experience (just one day so far!) but I am really happy with how the site works and looks.  If you have a second, stop on over and check it out!

I’m going to be doing a few feature posts in the next few weeks.  I’d like to get a gallery up of both shots from Jamaica as well as our recent trip to New York.  For now though, we’ll stick with this shot of a trolley station in Dormont.  I took this last week while waiting for the trolley to come to whisk me downtown for the Penguins game (maybe I should have just stayed home, as they blew a 2 goal lead with 3 minutes left).  It was nice to shoot with the 50mm 1.4, as I’ve developed WAA or Wide Angle Addiction since I got my new camera.  I was trying to wait for a train to come to get some bokehed lights, but no such luck.

Anyways, this is me, back on the wagon again!  Let’s see if I can keep the ball rolling!

Take care guys (and gals)!