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Fortune favors the bold.

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  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mark Garbowski, Oscar Navarro ?. Oscar Navarro ? said: From: @mgarbowski Crosswalk No. 68: Fortune favors the bold. Share H… #Photog #Photography [...]ReplyCancel

  • Jim DenhamNovember 17, 2010 - 7:39 am

    Does this guy know something the rest of them don’t? Awesome image Mark! Just awesome!ReplyCancel

  • Tobias GeorgeNovember 17, 2010 - 9:47 am

    Fantastic shot, Mark! Title makes the photo!ReplyCancel

  • James HoweNovember 17, 2010 - 10:28 am

    Perfect title. I love the determined look on the pedestrian and the way you captured the ‘Dont Walk’ hand in the background. Of course, it could have been blinking, but the inference in this image is that this person doesn’t care and is bolding going where others (in the background) fear to tread.ReplyCancel

  • Heath O'FeeNovember 17, 2010 - 12:10 pm

    Love this shot, Mark! Hope the hooded jaywalker made it across okay :) ReplyCancel

Sometimes fortune shines upon you.

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This is an infrared image of the moon, some clouds, and part of a bush, taken around 4:00 pm in my backyard.  Apart from the clouds, there was a bright blue sky.  The infrared capture and black and white conversion create the illusion of darkness.  Actually, I would not know how to get a capture remotely approaching this at night, in which the sky is black but the clouds are fully illuminated.

As an experiment, I ran this through the HDR process in Photomatix, but I’m not sure it had any effect in the end.  The bush is still mostly in silhouette.  And just for reference, I’ll note that the HDR was from a single image even though I shot 9 bracketed shots.  The clouds were moving so fast that using multiple images would have created a muddled mess.  Instead, I created 5 artificial brackets from the baseline image, by making 4 copies of it, and setting the exposure at +/-1 and +/-2 on them.  Although the HDR effect is not really ascertainable here, that is a good trick for making an HDR from a single image, as long as the raw file from your camera captures that much of an exposure range.

One last note, I was in the backyard shooting something else when I first noticed that the moon was up and that it was perfectly situated in a certain cloud formation.  I decided to finish what I was doing before switching to shoot the moon, and very nearly regretted it.  I had not considered that the clouds were not static and that waiting even 2-3 minutes might mean that the shot I envisioned would disappear.  I just about captured this image before the clouds, which were moving right to left, obscured the moon for several minutes, before it reappeared , but was no longer framed by the horseshoe cloud formation.  Had I been just a few moments later I would have missed the opportunity.

The post title is from “Marquee Moon,” by the band Television.

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Very few real streets look like this.  In fact, if you are watching a movie or TV show and see a street in the midel of a city that either dead ends, or ends with either an L intersection or T intersection, it is almost certainly a set.  City streets tend not to have such a configuration. In Manhattan, almost every street ends on the water.  Sets use these arrangements because it shortens the horizon and allows for shorter sets.  This street, nevertheless, is completely real.

Processing this yesterday image was fun.  I shot these brackets 8 months ago.  It was a quick pre-work photo walk, and everything was hand held.  I published a lot of shots from that day, but could not make this shot work.  Finally yesterday I thought: how about giving black and white a try?  So I pulled it into Nik Silver Efex and ended up processing with the neutral settings plus a color filter applied (I forget which but it was almost certainly red or green).  Then I pulled that into Color Efex to do some Tonal Contrast filter adjustments, and here it is.

Except for one other thing I forgot.  I actually shot 2 series of 9-exposure hand held brackets (I’m not kidding) that day.  There were 3 people in the street.  They did not move quickly enough for me to mask them out of either bracket set, but, after I did the PhotoMatix processing on one set, I pulled the result into Photoshop.  Then I copied the neutral image from the other set of brackets in as a layer.  The Photoshop Align Layers command is almost magical in its ability to align layers, even though I clearly moved between the two sets of brackets.  Given the several seconds of time lapse between each set of brackets, I was able to mask out the people altogether and create the illusion of a completely empty street.

Below is a result straight from PhotoMatix that I prepared several months ago.  You can perhaps see why I was unhappy with the color results, and can definitely see the people walking around.

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  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jacques and Mark Garbowski, Oscar Navarro ?. Oscar Navarro ? said: From: @mgarbowski Ordinary World: Very few real streets look like this.  In fact, if yo… #Photog #Photography [...]ReplyCancel

  • Jim DenhamNovember 14, 2010 - 10:02 am

    Love this one Mark. The detail is really highlighted by removing the color! Well done!ReplyCancel

  • TimoNovember 14, 2010 - 10:24 am

    Awesome picture! Black and white was definitely the right choice here!ReplyCancel

  • James HoweNovember 14, 2010 - 12:04 pm

    I love this in black & white. Great conversion, you’ve got some nice deep blacks and some wonderful highlights that aren’t blown out. The only technical issue I see is some noise in the sky, but I don’t know how easy it would be to clean that up. Everything else is superb.ReplyCancel

    • markNovember 15, 2010 - 8:10 am

      IThanks everyone for the comments. The noise appeared straight out of the Silver Efex Pro conversion, and got much worse after I ran the image through the Tonal Contrast filter. I used a mask to at least get it back to the limited amount in the Silver Efex layer. I did not want to do more because I was concerned that any noise reduction filter would affect some of the lines and detail in he rest of the image. I think the next time, if I can remember, I should run noise reduction on the image after HDR conversion but before the BW conversion in Silver Efex Pro. I think the noise was there, but wasn’t visible until the BW conversion, and if the noise reduction caused any loss of detail at that point, I could always try to add it back in.ReplyCancel

  • [...] have written before about how unusual it is for a street to have such a sharp bend or curve, and how they are found [...]ReplyCancel

I received enough positive feedback yesterday to keep me going with the Bus Stop series a while longer.  I tentatively plan to stop making regular Bus Stop & Crosswalk postings when each series reaches 100.  I won’t stop shooting or posting them, but they would no longer be a twice-weekly regular feature.

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  • Jim DenhamNovember 13, 2010 - 10:52 am

    What an unhappy face! Great shot though!ReplyCancel

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jim Denham, Oscar Navarro ?. Oscar Navarro ? said: From: @mgarbowski Bus Stop No. 66: I received enough positive feedback yesterday to kee… #Photog #Photography [...]ReplyCancel

  • MügeNovember 14, 2010 - 1:11 am

    Hello Mark,

    I’ve discovered blog coincidentially. Your candide/street photography is very very nice and interesting.

    Best regards from Istanbul, TurkeyReplyCancel

  • markNovember 14, 2010 - 7:39 am


    Thank you very much. I love to get visitors from abroad, and it means a lot to hear your kind words.

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