Sunday, July 5, 2009
View from the gallery
Hello all. :) I love being downtown at sunset. So many cool building reflecting and bouncing the last few rays of the day in crazy ways. You almost wish it lasted a little longer so you had time to wander around in it and take it all in.
The shot above was taken when I stepped out of the Alpha Omega gallery opening for the Austin Gathering of Photographers on Thursday for a bit. That's the Frost Bank tower - I believe its the tallest building in Austin at the moment.
I decided to test the RAW capabilities of the Panasonic LX3. I had to use Silkypix as my other RAW editors will not work with the Panasonic files. I manually developed the file into 3 different pictures with 2 stops variance in exposure. I then used Essential HDR to generate a high dynamic range image.
One thing that really bugged me though was the distortion created by shooting up with the camera. Its just what happens when you shoot up a tall objects - the lines converge as they go up. The best way to deal with this is with a tilt/shift lens. I didn't happen to have one on me, plus they are very expensive, so I used a program called PT Lens. Great product, and not too expensive. I believe it runs about $25 or so and is very useful at correcting all kinds of distortions. It even has a database for putting in certain lens/camera combos for automatic distortion correction - barrel/pincushion, chromatic aberration, and perspective distortions such as in this case. Anyway, here's the image before it was corrected, you can see what a difference it makes. Although side effect of correcting this distortion is that it crops in quite a bit in the final product, so you have to shoot with plenty of room around the subject.