Architecture, Photography

Working Out New Things

Since I first started watching KelbyOne I have learned so many new things, and one of things that I have discovered is a different way of doing architectural images.  I have said before about the idea of using more than one image and doing some different things. So last week I went out for dinner with a friend and then we went and sat outside the The Centre, Ivanhoe, or what used to be the old town hall while I took photos.

We sat there for just over an hour and a half as the sun went down.  I took over 200 images, though most were bracketed.  I set the camera up on the tripod and every 10 or so minutes took 9 bracketed shots.  I was hoping for a good sunset, but you know I didn’t get one, do I ever.

LeanneCole-ivanhoecentre-0045This was one of the first photos I took, the sun is setting behind the building.

LeanneCole-ivanhoecentre-0243This was one of the last.  The sun had set and the lights were on.

I wanted to see if I could get something in between.  I did a whole series of HDR’s and then took a bit of this one, and a bit of that one, then I blended some bits, blurred others, and just experimented until I got this.

LeanneCole-ivanhoecentre-3I am happy with it for my first time doing this.  There are definitely things I need to learn how to do better, and work out when to use HDR and when not to.  It was an interesting thing to do.

I think I got the effect I was hoping for, but I would like to go back and try it again.  I would like to see if I can get a sunset behind the building, lots of oranges and reds pushing up behind the building.  That might make it more interesting.

The angle of the camera wasn’t great and if I went back I might see about changing that as well.  Maybe have the camera higher up on the tripod.

These sorts of photos are different for me and I would really like to do more.  I do love the KelbyOne site but their posts on architecture are very limited, and the ones they have are for people who have spent lots of money on lights and such.  Maybe when I figure it out I will do my own little videos.  It is something I want to do in the future. One day, maybe.

I am putting the three images into a gallery so you can look at them individually.

Tomorrow is the black and white challenges, I got lots of entries, so I am looking forward to showing them to you.


    • Thank you Jo, I think I am like that because I am never happy, so I am always trying new things to see where I can improve. Maybe I am just crazy, LOL

  1. Love the camera angle or lens. Makes the shot look kind of daunting (for some reason).

    • Thank you Ron, I like the angle, but I wonder if it wouldn’t have been better to be a little higher.

  2. In spite of not having a dramatic sky to work with (and I feel your pain, my last trip to Tokyo the skies were a uniform pale gray and the light was flat and damp – yes, damp!) I think you managed to assemble a very attractive and interesting photo. I look forward to seeing how you develop these skills.

    • Why is it for some of us that it just never seems to happen, I always seem to luck out when it comes to sunrises and sunsets. I did what I could with what I got, I’m really disappointed, but I think it could look a lot better with a sunset behind it. Thank you.

  3. What a great image!! I love the contrast of blue against gold since they are opposite on the color wheel. I’m looking forward to the B&W challenge as well! I’ll send you my post in the morning (my U.S. morning that is lol).

    • Thank you Laura, The blue against the gold is interesting, I quite liked it in the end. I’m looking forward to it as well. I’ve received quite a few emails, so it should look good. I haven’t done my image yet, but will do it a little later one. Looking forward to seeing yours.

  4. OK. Now granted I don’t know nearly as much as you do, yet it would be awesome if you saw how incredible you are in your work and as a person. We are our own worst critics, are we not? I think what you did with this photo is brilliant. :) Love, Amy

    • Thank you Amy, I was brought up not to brag, so I find it difficult to blow my own horn, is that the saying. Though I think there is always room for improvement and there are always things to learn. :)

      • Hmmm….I was taught the same way. I have started to undo that, by clicking like with my own work. (smile) If I don’t like my own work, who will! (((HUGS))), Amy

      • I just had a meeting with a friend who is in public relations and she was telling me that I had to talk myself up, it is hard work. I like that, it is funny, I do like my work now, I am pretty sure I can say that honestly, thank you Amy.

      • Oh, Leanne, that is wonderful. When I hear the voice of doubt I chase it away. It is a process and I am really proud of you for taking that step towards loving yourself more. Love, Amy

      • And as you go through yours, I mine, and together, we encourage and lift each other up. :) Love, Amy

        PS I really LOVE your gravatar, Leanne. Makes me think on how to better mine. I’ll leave my pink rose for now, and keep this at the back of my mind, to change mine. Maybe I will leave the pink rose and put black letters across it … ARP … oh no way, that looks awful! LOL ARP? Don’t think so. ….giggling ….

      • That is very true, always good to help one another.
        I used to have weird photo of myself for my gravatar, not that you could really see me in in, but then I noticed that some other people had ones that really stood out, so I started thinking, and decided to do one that would be me, so to speak. I wanted it to stand out in a crowd, and I think it does. It is like my brand now, and I use it for Facebook, Google+ anything that needs some sort of profile image, it works really well. The ARP, haha, got me giggling now too. Too much like RIP, you don’t that. LOL.

  5. So, that mean that we must be patient and try over and over to get the good shot. This one is very nice I think. Taken at the right time. Good job and you giving me the willing to do so.

    • Sometimes I think it does, not always, but it can be a good thing to try, I think the more you go some where the more you get to know it and the better you are able to take photos of it. If we try and learn from our previous experiences. Of course, it isn’t always possible. Thank you and that is great to read.

  6. Great job, Leanne! The end result is fantastic! Thanks much! Looking forward to seeing your next creations, and the B&W parade of tomorrow. You make things much funnier and I thank you for that! Take care! :)

    • Thank you Fabio, that is great. I think others are too, I am quite excited about it as well, I better do my image.

  7. Here I was thinking I liked the cameral angle and then you said you weren’t happy with it. It looks pretty good to me and the night time photo with the lights on is great.

    • I didn’t like what happened to the left of the image, it kicks it out a bit much that’s all, otherwise I like it, I like all the angles. Thanks Carol

  8. I would love to see a photo from you where there are lots of oranges and reds in the sky. I don’t see these enough these days anywhere. I thought the blended picture was great, in that there was a lot of texture in the sky. I wish the Australian flag (I’m guessing) at the top of the building was more prominent.

    Hope your week so far is great, and hope your girls are enjoying uni :)

    • I will have to keep trying Mabel, see what I get, I am getting better at working out when there will be a sunset, so hopefully, I can get it. The flag is so far away, but I am glad I got what I got.
      Yes, it has been good so far, and yes the girls seem to be loving Uni, haha. Thanks Mabel, hope you are having a good week too.

      • Have to agree with you on sunsets. It’s hard to predict when there’ll be a good sunset, depends a lot on the weather and the clouds in the sky. And also the season and where you’re shooting the sunset from.

        Thanks, Leanne. Big unpredictable change this week that made me realise I need to work out how to make a living from writing and doing what you love doing, haha :D

      • They never happen when I am there, haha, I never seem to get them.
        If you work out how to do that, please let me know, haha. Good luck.

      • Thanks, but no. I should be looking to you, haha. You have a good thing going with your photography sessions.

      • Oh I wish, I seem like I might be successful, and in some ways I am, but I don’t earn much money, unfortunately, working on that.

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  10. Looking at your final result, i was wondering if you used black vignetting as well? It might be an idea if you take a slightly lighter picture and then add a dark vignette to it. Just trying to think with u :)

    Nice to see you experimenting! Keep it up! Today i’m gonna find out how to create HDR lol :)


    • I don’t really do vignetting, I do use a gradient and did that on the top of the image.
      I love experimenting and I do do it a lot.
      thank you Pieter.

      • No not really, I tend to not do it, but I can be heavy handed with the gradient, I like that one, then I can use it where I want to use it. :)

  11. Loved the post and your pictures. I am yet to experiment with HDR and your post inspired me to try. Loved the angle and the lighting in your pictures as well.

    • It can be an interesting process, also interesting to work out what will and won’t work with it. Thank you.

  12. Good work – glad you are having fun with using your course work. I think the angle would be fine if you had the sunset you were after – the looming building with the sunset behind. Unfortunately you cannot guarantee what kind of setting sun you are going to get when you first set up. I do like the results here.

    • Thank you Robert, that is so true, I just wish I had gone more to the left with it really, I don’t like the left side of the image. Luckily for me this building isn’t that far away, so I will have lots of chances to go back and do it again, will take a chair and warmer clothes with me next time.

  13. I think you’ve done a very good job on this. I’m not very comfortable with shooting architecture, but I’m trying to improve. Do you have a circular polarizing filter? I think that might help knock down the ambient light in the sky, and give you a little more play with the building lights.

    What program do you use for post processing? I use Lightroom and GIMP, and unfortunately don’t have Photoshop.

    • I love architecture, I am not comfortable shooting Landscapes, but I am trying to get better at it. I do have that filter, but it won’t fit on the lens I was using. The 14-24 has a funny front and you can’t get filters to fit it, unfortunately, maybe I should try another lens.
      For this image the photo was processed in Photomatix Pro for the HDR and then Photoshop CC. I do have it, though Lightroom is supposed to be good, I haven’t really used it. GIMP is great, but it is limited, I find. Perhaps you could consider Photoshop Elements.

  14. I like what you did with these photos and I also like the angle. Sunset red and orange would be beautiful behind the building, though. I bet you get what you want next time!

    • I don’t know, I seem to have terrible luck when it comes to getting sunrises and sunsets. I figure if I go there and take photos multiple times, eventually I have to get one, I hope. Thank you.

  15. Your blended image is very pretty. Haven’t developed the patience for HDR yet.

    • Thank you David, yes HDR is a bit of a learning curve, hard to know when to use it and when not to.

  16. I have been playing with HDR for a while and, even after having made some experience, I feel it’s a technique that takes a long time to learn and master. This is in my view a very tricky image to process because of the moving sky and some areas with very fine details. In terms of type of images lending themselves to HDR processing, I haven’t yet found an answer. I have done some indoors, outdoors, day and night, with varying results.

    In cases like this example, you may want to try to merge the frames in a 32-bit file. There is a long technical explanation behind the use of 32-bit files but the bottom line is that this is the only type of file capable of ingesting, managing and stretching, pretty much an infinite tonal range. You will find that the 32-bit file is unmanageable in terms of printing and even for correct visualisation on your screen, but you will be able to tweak and adjust it far beyond the extent allowed by a 16-bit file. The file will then have to be scaled down for printing or any other types of publishing, that is where I typically either make it or brake it. You need something very robust and flexible to achieve this, I find the Photoshop CC ability to apply Camera Raw as a layer filter invaluable to this type of processing.

    All in all, some files I can manage successfully whereas on some I feel simply hopeless. Sometimes the end result obtained by working on the best single frame of the series is better than the result from the lengthy HDR process – I haven’t yet been able to understand whether this is a technical limitation imposed by certain image files or if it is a limit in my processing skills. Probably the latter.

    I hope this helps.

    • HDR does take a lot of playing around with, and I am getting better and better at working out which ones to use and which not. Basically anything where there is a lot of contrast, a lot of it. I know only use it if I have images where I know I can’t get good exposures of the lights and darks in one image.
      Photomatix won’t let you do the 32 bit file, I’ve tried and it doesn’t come out very well. I’ve heard that HDR Efex does, I think, and the HDR in Photoshop, but haven’t tried, I don’t mind the HDR and I don’t think the problems with this image were the HDR so much, it is more my inexperience at doing what I was attempting to do.
      Good luck with your HDR images and thank you Raul.

  17. It looks like the Art Deco former Heidelberg Town Hall – takes me back to Saturday night dances! A great shot, Leanne, and one that certainly brings back memories.

    • It is Bronwyn, the same building, they have just given it a new name. That is wonderful, how wonderful. Thank you.

  18. freefallingvulture says

    Beautiful work! Great technique and style!

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