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Friday, May 20, 2011

A Rainy New York Night

Hey there!! Today's photograph was taken in New York City...Surprise!! Imagine that. Me posting an image that I shot in New York. This is so unusual. Are you guys sick of the NYC images? Tell me the truth. I can handle it. Really..."You can't handle the truth!!" HeHeHe. I guess if you haven't seen A Few Good Men, then you're thinking I'm pretty crazy right now. Anyways, this shot is part of my NYC series. I wanted to create an image that really expressed a sense of 'old school' New York...The cobblestone streets in Greenwich Village..a taxi cab driving by in the rain...the large, colorful building in the background...It took me quite a bit of research to find some cobblestone roads still in existence in NY. Most of the cobblestone roads that are still left in Manhattan are in the West Village, SoHo, and the Chelsea neighborhoods. However, many of these roads are being ripped up due to drainage and sewerage problems. Unfortunately, after they're ripped up to fix the drainage problems, the City is replacing them with pavement, not cobblestone. I find this really sad because it's a piece of history being destroyed forever. I felt an urgency to capture this part of Manhattan before it's gone forever. 

Post Processing:
This is an HDR image that was created from 5 exposures, -2 to +2. Tone mapped in Photomatix, of course. Pretty conservative settings were used in Photomatix, as usual. For example, light smoothing was set high, at around 80. Post processing was done in Photoshop. The most challenging aspect to this image was fixing the extreme ghosting of the Taxi and getting rid of the light trails that resulted from the longer exposures. To do this, I choose the exposure that best matched the tone mapped version in terms of lighting, color, and tone. I adjusted that exposure to match even more closely then placed in directly under the tone mapped layer. I added a layer mask to the tone mapped layer and masked out the light trails and masked in the taxi. Hue/Saturation was fixed to reduce the redness of the tone mapped version. Levels...Curves...viola! Cheers!!


  1. Although this is not my favorite shot o yours, I van appreciate the work you did in post processing. What it lacks in luster, it make up for in creativity and uniqueness. I love how you chose to capture the cobblestone in NYC. A lot of the city pictures can get redundant (even if I were not reading your blog), simply because the content is mass-produced. The cobblestone is beautiful and seeing a taxi driving over it on a rainy night sets a wonderful mood for the photograph. Well done.

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  3. Can* Makes*

    I love my iPhone. I love my iPhone. I love my iPhone.
    I do not love autocorrect.

    By the way... I'm pretty sure the large majority of your readers will understand the quote (even the ones that haven't seen the movie).

  4. That's come out real nice, and your technique of dealing with ghosting is almost identical to mine when doing HDR's... Sometimes I even get away with only tonemapping a single exposure, and blending it with the original RAW file for the best results...

  5. Thank you for that tip about blending a single exposure tone mapped image with the original RAW. i will try that!!