The Capital of the World

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

This entry was posted in PhotoBlog on by .

About Brian Auer

a photography enthusiast from North Idaho. He's also the guy behind the Epic Edits Weblog. As a hobbyist photographer since 2003, his passion has been to constantly improve his photography skill set, to share his own knowledge with others, and to become an integral part of the photographic community.

6 thoughts on “The Capital of the World

  1. bestgramps

    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.

  2. Ron

    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.

  3. Brian Auer Post author

    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.

  4. Brian Auer Post author

    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.

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