This post contains a QTVR, which needs QuickTime to be installed. It requires some time to load and probably won't show properly on mobile devices.
Here we go now with the gallery (or expo). It really made my week busy, and made my plans go on halt for the time being, despite the fact that attendance there was almost a zero for most days. Yet, I had to attend and be there for some time now and then (except on Friday, in which I was really tired and needed to sleep). In the beginning I was reluctant to do any documentation, but then I decided to do some simple documenting, specifically for my own work, and add a twist to it by using anaglyphs.
|Section where my prints are kept (on the right side of the hall from entrance).|
They should look hovering above wall level when viewed properly.
Click to enlarge.
Doing a panorama, too, was out of question, but then I thought again why not document that whole hall by doing a panorama? Specially that I didn't touch my tools for a long time now (while trying to work indoors at home to no avail). This panorama specifically was a unique experience on certain levels. I've discovered that empty spaces do have their magic at some point, this is for one. On the other hand, some features were not quite obvious on location until I started working with the shots, this is for two. As for the third, it was the usual pizza-behavior as I call it - panorama stitching gone erratic. Something weird is going on with this behavior, and I must try to figure out the reasons behind it before heading to Oman on September 9th.
I did the panorama shooting in one day, but since it didn't go well (as I said, pizza behavior!), I came back the second day to shoot. However, after inspecting some images, I could probably relate to the reasons for such erratic behavior in the stitching process; it could be the dirty lens which left some spots (probably causing the computer to calculate some control points for them), and to my surprise, I've found out that there is a whole angle or corner in the panorama which was left without shooting! It was definitely a job to be done again (and carefully this time), and after cleaning the camera and lenses thoroughly.
This panorama shooting was done in manual mode and I did some light metering around the set yielding 1sec exposure at f/11 and ISO100. This is the base from which I've expanded a bracket to take shots at -2 and +2 EV (that is 2 stops below and above the basic exposure time). However, the next day, the settings in the camera didn't change but I thought of reducing the f-number to f/9 while reducing the base exposure to half a second. This was done mainly for two reasons: a) reducing light source burst (star-like effect) which might corrupt the stitch later on and add unfavorable effect, and b) just to make sure that +2EV shots don't go way too bright but just enough to control the shadow areas later on. Moreover, I've used my white balance disk to pick up a Custom WB image, because the lighting conditions there were all mixed up (CFL and spotlights). A decision I didn't regret at all!
|Initial tone-mapping settings before adding further adjustment layers.|
I got to say that I like the shape of the final curve!
Tone-mapping the HDR panorama was done in Photoshop rather in Photomatix. This is because I needed some control over specific zones (to make the whole scene look as if it was a high-key shot), while suppressing some other zones; in a nutshell, Photomatix would be way too general to my needs here. The only mishap here is that the virtual reality (QTVR) would have an obvious seam between the left and the right edges of the panorama. Strangely, that did not happen, or maybe it did but my eyes are failing me! Photomatix supposedly is the only application that would make it possible to equalize the exposure and tones on the left and right edges. I was thinking of fixing that manually if I had to, but strangely, the QTVR was seamless!
As I usually do nowadays, I don't play it hard with the nadir shots (even though I do take them in the process, just in case). Thus, I've made the usual tag or title nadir shot on my own, with information about this QTVR (location, event, …etc). As I've mentioned above, I was surprised that the QTVR did not have a seam line, OR it might be just my eyes failing me. The irony here is that I didn't notice the arcs in the ceiling on location, but only when I started to work with this panorama already! Anyway, it was a lovely addition which transformed my work from documentation to working for art.
For this panorama specifically, it is better to see it in a small size, as there are several stitching errors even in the second trial to take the panorama (however, they were minor). I do suspect that Moiré effect does have a relation to this. But I need to check my no-parallax point in the configuration as well.
This might be my last post for now before heading to Oman next week, on September 9th. Four days only, but surely they will be tiring. I've seen the proposed schedule for the shoot and frankly I'm not sure I will be able to cope with that but I'm hoping to do some panoramas there and night shots as well. Until then, I'll be wishing myself some good luck…
|A surprise this week from m&m's. A heart-shaped chocolate legume!|