Yesterday at 8 pm, after more than a month of waiting, I got an opportunity to capture some new images. My family and I drove to Harbor Island, and I photographed downtown San Diego through the quickly forming haze. I spent about an hour taking pictures of downtown, the USS Midway, planes landing at Lindbergh Field, the Coronado Bridge, and Naval Air Station North Island, with lots of success. I took 28 pictures total, and over half of those are good enough to be taken through Photoshop. So far, I have worked on two.
I couldn’t make my tripod level to save my life, so I gave up entirely and decided to rely on the Ruler Tool in Photoshop. I also decided to manually focus all my images (it’s not that hard, everyone), even though there was plenty enough to let the camera do it. First, there is this picture. I set the f-stop to 11, and 36 seconds later I had a beautifully crooked image with the front of a boat and three tree branches in the frame. Good enough for now. Now I repeated the process a more dozen times.
When I had exhausted the location directly across the bay from the city and taken enough pictures of the Naval Air Station North Island to make the Navy suspicious, we moved to a part of Harbor Island parallel to Lindbergh Field. I set up the camera and while waiting for an airplane, took this picture. Wow, I wonder if it has a white balance problem? I took a few more and then turned the camera to the sky, and captures about five airplanes as they came in to land. Those pictures are coming soon, if I decide they are good enough because they aren’t very interesting. After frantically running after some fireworks, pictures of which are also coming soon, we headed home.
Now time for Photoshop. Today I unloaded the pictures from the camera, 648MB for just 28 pictures. Each of these two images (one and two) went through the following process: Camera Raw, Photoshop, Camera Raw, Photoshop. I have sort of developed a workflow that I like for CS5. My exact methods will remain a mystery for now, but I will say that I am REALLY starting to like the new Subtract blending mode. Oh, and I should mention that this helped a lot, especially with the second image. And here are the finished products: one and two. Quite an improvement, if I do say so myself. After finishing the first image, I realized that I should have used a different one of the dozen or so similar shots I took, so I will probably be redoing it in the near future.
More images from yesterday’s shoot coming soon. Next weekend I will hopefully get the (focused) shot of the Coronado Bridge that Mr. Skocko has been asking for. Now I have to decide which one of my images to submit to the District Art Show.