How I Took That Shot – Paul Stack

In our recent ECCG 'Shoots' Competition, entered images had to have been taken during one of our scheduled shoots held during 2017. Paul Stack took first place in Grade C with just seven points to spare. This is how he made the image:

Thanks to Finbarr for the Copper Coast plan and Michael for knowledgeable driving on route to the Copper Coast in Waterford on a nice day in April 2017. Normally my excursions to Waterford would involve the Comeraghs to get out and enjoy the views with my camera.

The Greenway was the first stop on the Copper Coast Photoshoot excursion, and although the initial plan was to capture one of the viaducts, we strolled down to the Ballyvoyle Tunnel near Shanacool parking area. A very interesting feat of engineering. From deisegreenway.com, "The Railway Line from Dungarvan to Waterford was constructed during the 1870's and was officially opened on the 12th August 1878". It has been reopened in recent years providing a long route between Dungarvan and Waterford city for pedestrians and cyclists, and prams 🙂

On entering and leaving Ballyvoyle tunnel I caught a few nice views. I quite enjoy the challenge of capturing images in dark light or night time and the tunnel was a good test of camera skills. Also appeared like some longer tunnel photos looked really good on my camera screen. But I had a feeling when I look at the images from the tunnel at home that they would be blurry, and they were...

So this is where HDR, High Dynamic Range, Photography comes in. In the weeks leading up to the photoshoot I had come across some HDR tutorials and reviews and enabled the saving of RAW format images on my camera as they contain more image information that can be found on a normal JPG image file. 

Anthony gave a tutorial in a ECCG meeting around the same week. As a result I downloaded the free version of Photomatix software and did some experiments at home but found a terrible watermarks in the saved images, despite all the time spent in styling.

In purchasing recent cameras i've been lucky with increased stabilization with less chance of blurring an image. The camera was Olympus OM-D E-M5 with a standard lens of M.Zuiko 12-50mm ƒ/3.5-6.3. 

The image was about a 2 second exposure, and for me taking multiple attempts should normally achieve a non-blurry image.

It should also be mentioned that we had much less traffic inside the tunnel to allow for much better opportunities and less crowded to capture the surroundings.

Before shot at about 25% of the JPG file: (Image: P4090090_small) 

Using the RAW file I did some trials with different settings, but had to restart a number of times due to losing the image quality. Sometimes the generated final image with Photomatix just got distorted. The image displayed in Photomatix is a more recent darker attempt, but the figure in the light at the end of the tunnel loses their head. This version is closely related the the Monochrome 2 preset in Photomatix, whereas the competition image is closer related to Monochrome 3 with a lot of tweaks and adjustment to the settings displayed on the right side of Photomatix.

I was aiming to make the image as smooth as I could see it, with keeping an eye mostly on the shadows across the path and trying to emphasize those, while also keeping an eye of the figure in the light at the end of the tunnel. But in applying the HDR process to non-blurry images it didn't have the same emphasis as the lighting was from the other side of the tunnel. So the light at the end of the tunnel was behind me in this case.

 - Paul Stack

Well done Paul.

Click here to see a gallery of images from the competition.

See also:
How I took that Shot - Michael Hickey
How I took that Shot - Noelle Lowney
Competition Gallery
Winners Presentation Photos
Competition Results and 2017 League Table

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter

Culture Night, Cork – 22/09/2017

This the 2nd of 2 days open invites where Cork people and visitors can view the insides of buildings, this time for cultural purposes. This night started in Dublin's Temple Bar about 10 years ago and has spread throughout the country since. Many large buildings were used to display Art, Music, Films and Dance and a great night was had.

Walking from the northside, I stopped in St. Lukes where there was an interesting Art exhibition entitled, "Fantasy of the Good Life". Then I met up with fellow club member, Keith Johnston and went to the "Port of Cork" building, where the trade skills of Cork builders were visible and complimented by Traditional Music played by young musicians. The building was full of history with model boats in glass cases and mementos of visiting ships on display in the reception area. In the boardroom were paintings, prints and a outstanding City Coat of Arms on display.

On to The City Hall which had several areas of activity. including films with a Cork theme. Next, in the Millennium Hall was a youth orchestra from "Music Generation from Cork City" and Barrack Street. In the new building there were male voice groups performing. We watched the "The Polyphonics Cork"  which were very entertaining.

With the 9pm train looming we worked our way back photographing buildings and bridges dressed in coloured lights for the occasion.

Click here to see a gallery of images from the shoot.

 - Jim Curtin

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter

How I Took That Shot – John Tait

John Tait took first place in Grade A in our recent 'Vacation' competition with the shot above. This is how he captured the image:

As I had no brainwaves for our "Vacation" themed competition, I went on a trawl through my holiday photographs, taken last May in Lagos, Portugal. When we go to Lagos, I usually bring my 7D MK II, and my 100-400mm. I am usually looking for wildlife shots, so my birds usually have feathers rather than bikinis, and my nightlife shots are more likely to be of Owls rather than Discos and Bars. Not very fertile ground for "Vacation" shots!

 However.. I also usually bring my little Sony RX100 "Pocket Rocket" when on walkabout around town. As I am still trying to get to grips with it's menus and creative modes, I had it set to Auto. ( I know I know....I should be shooting in manual...Sorry! ) As we walked thru' the old town, I was intrigued by a very long building, whose outside wall curved gently around to the right, following the curve of the street. Right behind this building stands a lovely medieval Church with a nice bell tower. On the opposite side of the street, there is a line of old traditional town houses. The whole scene looked very nice and typically Portuguese in the bright sunlight.

I stood looking at the scene, and decided that it had some potential. I composed the shot, putting the Church tower on the top right hand third, and used the street, the curving building, and both pavements as lead-in lines to the Church tower. As the street was empty of people, I waited until a lady pedestrian walked around the corner and into the lower right hand third of the frame. Bingo!  I had my shot.

I took lots of shots on that trip, most of which were deleted later, but I kept this one as I really liked it. Thankfully, on competition night, a good number of club members seemed to like it too.

 - John Tait

Well done John.

Click here to see a gallery of images from the competition.

See also:
How I took that Shot - Noelle Lowney
How I took that Shot - Miriam Keogh
Winners Presentation Photos
Competition Results and 2017 League Table

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter

How I Took That Shot – Noelle Lowney

Not content at winning Grade B in our recent 'Vacation' competition, Noelle Lowney also took first place across all Grades with the shot above taken in the National Park, Killarney. This is how she made the shot:

The image was taken in the grounds of Muckcross House, Killarney, Co. Kerry. The weather was not great that day with dull skies and rain. On my search for a vacation image walking through the wet grounds of Muckross, I decided that a jaunting car transporting tourists from around the globe would be an ideal vacation theme.

I poised myself by the side of a narrow road in the rain and took a few shots of the
jaunting cars transporting tourists ,mostly from the USA, around the Killarney lakes
and surrounding scenic countryside. While the passengers in the jaunting carriage
took in the sights and enjoyed the experience of a unique ride in an Irish traditional
mode of transport, the driver (Jarvey) regaled them with local history, stories of old
and Irish legends and folklore. After taking multiple shots I decided on this image as I thought it represented true vacation with the lady in the carriage taking a shot of Muckcross house to capture memories of a memorable trip to Ireland.

The shot was taken on a Canon EOS 7D Mark II - Camera settings TV (Shutter
Priority), F/3.5,ISO1250 and Shutter Speed 1/2000.

 - Noelle Lowney

Well done Noelle.

Click here to see a gallery of images from the competition.

See also:
How I took that Shot - John Tait
How I took that Shot - Miriam Keogh
Winners Presentation Photos
Competition Results and 2017 League Table

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter

How I Took That Shot – Miriam Keogh

Miriam Keogh took the top spot in Grade C in our recent 'Vacation' competition with the shot above. This is how the shot came about:

This was a bridge I was walking over in Pontevedre in Spain as part of the Camino Way. It was early morning and only fellow walkers were to be seen beginning the days journey. The water was so calm and the sun just rising which gave it the orange glow and I just had to stop and take a photo.

 - Miriam Keogh

Well done Miriam.

Click here to see a gallery of images from the competition.

See also:
How I took that Shot - John Tait
How I took that Shot - Noelle Lowney
Winners Presentation Photos
Competition Results and 2017 League Table

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
FacebooktwitterFacebooktwitter