Yet another shot of mine from the deck of a moving boat. I really am terrible. It’s hard not to when you’re in the New York waterways. This one presented itself to me as kind of a nice little capture of the Statue of Liberty with Manhattan in the frame. Since the boat was moving, I didn’t have much time to frame it up and try different things. For this one, I pretty much centered the statue vertically (which incidentally positioned the city-line at about the 1/3 mark) and zoomed to include the statue and all of Manhattan. The sun was setting, so there wasn’t a lot of light, and it also caused the haze to look abnormally dirty. The only saving grace for this photo was turning it black & white.

click for larger image

As you can see, the original image (1) was a bit dull and washed out. The layer of brown haze hovering over the city didn’t make it any more exciting either. Before I did anything, I cloned out the buoy in the foreground water (2). Then I toyed around with the Adobe Photoshop CS3 black and white adjustment layer (3). I settled on 120% red, 120% yellow, -10% green, -50% cyan, -115% blue, and 120% magenta. This turned the water and upper sky dark while brightening the brownish color of the city and the haze. For me, it created a nice 3 band separation from dark to light to dark again. For the finishing touches I applied a levels adjustment layer (4) with the shadow input at 11, the highlight input at 227, and the midtone at 1.00. A curves adjustment layer (5) was used to brighten the highlights/midtones just slightly, while maintaining the shadows. Last step was sharpening (6) with the unsharp mask.

Gates of New York

Photo by Brian Auer
11/05/06 New York, NY
The Capital of the World
Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D
Konica Minolta AF DT 18-200
45mm equiv * f/16 * 1/45s * ISO100

6 responses

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Nice shot, I like the black and white effect. I will look up my shot of the same and see if it is any better. I was standing next to at the time taking the same shot. Mine should be better. Perhaps you can edit it for me.

April 21, 2007 12:16 pm

I don’t think so old man. I’m thinking mine is better.

April 21, 2007 12:30 pm

I notice you only use Adobe Photoshop CS3. Could you recommend a less involved editing sofeware for a novice shooter, I’m using Photosuite 7.

April 21, 2007 3:03 pm

I do only use the latest version of Photoshop, but Adobe also offers a more novice software package called Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0. I’ve used previous versions of Elements, and it’s very similar to Photoshop in functionality — it’s just not as overwhelming. Haven’t used Photosuite, so I couldn’t comment on that one.

April 21, 2007 3:19 pm

Picasa by Google might also be worth to look at. I haven’t tried it but from all I’ve heard it is pretty good, even at editing images and since it is free it is definitely worth a try :)

April 22, 2007 5:47 pm

I’ve used Picasa for editing when I was in a pinch. I use it as my photo organization software. It has a lot of really easy controls for editing photos, but it doesn’t have the flexibility of a Photoshop-like software. It’s probably a good place to start, then move up to something like Elements, and eventually graduate to the Creative Suite.

April 22, 2007 6:47 pm

Comment now!