Tag Archives: Topaz

A Pacifica Sunset

A storm was coming, but not for a couple of days.

I got kind of lucky being later than I had originally planned on my weekly visit to San Bruno Mountain. I like to go adventure driving and often take the long way to get there, or maybe take the long way to go back home. I especially like dropping down to the ocean at Pacifica, where I can stroll along the beach front or out onto the fishing pier.

A storm was brewing, but wouldn't arrive for a couple of days. It was sending some pretty nice breakers ahead of time. This is the time of year when the annual Mavericks surf competition takes place nearby, so it's not unusual to have big surf anyway.

But the couds! Oh, the clouds! They were beautiful, and gave some character to the sky as the sun sank into the westward sea. So I took a series of shots of the breakers meeting the shore, and some frames of the clouds above. (I collect sky shots for sky replacement in some of my other photos.)

This was edited starting in #LightroomCC and finished off in #PhotoshopCC with the help of #Topaz Star Effects to enhance the sun flare.

#Ocean #Beach #SanFranciscoBayArea #Pacifica

 

Space Shuttle Discovery

Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
Smithsonian Air and Space Museum
Chantilly, Virginia

Our little group spent a day wandering around this place. This shot has its flaws, most especially camera shake, but at this size it looks decent enough, I guess. I used the method #Topaz gave a bit of publicity last week, using a high pass filter and #TopazDenoise to sharpen a noisy photo, and it also helped to disguise some of the camera shake, if you don't look too closely.

I also clone-stamped a couple of people out of the scene, as their presence didn't advance the story in the photo. Also used were #Lightroom5 and Adobe Camera Raw as a filter in #PhotoshopCC . For all the improvements, I still had to do size reduction to hide the very apparent problems- even if you know about them now for having read this far!

#Travel #WashingtonDC #Smithsonian #SpaceShuttleDiscovery
#FFA

 

Hand-holding At

The Smithsonian
Air and Space Museum,
Washington Dulles International Airport

I visited Washington, D.C. with some friends back in October. It was a pretty full five days or so, with private guided tours to some locations and other tours booked at the White House and the Capitol.

If you've read many of my posts in the past, it may be understood that my camera is now nearly 10 year old technology. It wouldn't be that big a deal if it was a DSLR, but I'm not into changing lenses, so it isn't.

At the time it was released, the Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ30 was about as good as it got for a "bridge camera" – a DSLR-like body, great lens . . . and a tiny point-and-shoot sensor that pretty much maxes out ISO 200 – and that is pretty noisy. But that's the camera I have, until I win the lotto.

One of our stops was the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum at Washington Dulles International Airport. It's a big place that takes all day to tour, and there are still things you might miss out on. Fortunately, there's a McDonalds inside.

This panorama was created from three handheld shots that have proved the value of #Topaz plugins for #Photoshop . I began with some Adobe Camera Raw adjustments to even out the lighting on the plane. Also used were #TopazDenoise , #TopazDetail , and some other adjustment layers, including a copy of the smooth de-noised version that was further given about a 30 px. gaussian blur, then set to hard light blend mode. To top it all off was a levels adjustment layer masked to darken the foreground and background and make the plane stand out.

So, here it is with a lot to nitpick, maybe, but between the camera and my shaky hands, this is all you get! Enjoy!

#Travel #WashingtonDC #Smithsonian

#FFA

 

Bridge Over Vltava, Prague

Four handheld shots.

(To get the most out of this panorama, click on it, then hit your spacebar to go into full screen mode, then use your scroll wheel to zoom in!)

I've posted a version of this panorama before, but I've never been fully satisfied with it. Now that #PhotoshopCC and #Topaz plugins offer ways of improved production, I think I'm close. Of course, the real solution is to go back with a better (less noisy) camera and do it over.

The component shots were taken looking northward from the Charles Bridge at approximately 4:45 p.m. on 10 February 2008.

Tools used were #Lightroom5 , PhotoshopCC, #TopazDenoise3 , #TopazDetail5 and a couple of adjustment layers.

#Travel #Prague #CzechRepublic #Panorama #BridgePhotography

#FFA