Digital is Hard

Posted on November 6, 2014


A Complete Day of Failures

The local wonder of the world, the Snoqualmie Falls, were booming yesterday and the rivers were at flood stage. I waited all day today for it to stop raining and get some definition in the sky so I could go shoot some images. I loaded up my medium format RB67 and my DSLR and headed out. By the time I got there the rivers had dropped (the tribs are all fishable already) and the falls were fairly mediocre. (I’ve seen them running so hard the mist cloud filled the entire bowl.) So I snapped some digital pictures, thinking more about framing and such than color, realizing that any real effort would require HDR which is far beyond me, but wanting to think about the shots for coming back and shooting it for real in B&W.  What I didn’t think about, because I’d only just played with it once before last week, was that I had the camera set on custom white balance to shoot product images for my store in a light tent. Bad, Jon. Bad, bad, bad. Instead of white, I got all of these weird fluorescent rainbow hues, with a greenish cast. But I did learn a few things, like that 1000th/s is not fast enough to freeze the water, and that I can crop and get some nice shots. This will be very handy for the B&W shots.  I think the birds make a nice contrast, and as I’ve found on previous occasions, I find I like the falls better in abstraction than in their full marvelous nature.

Like I said, I’m not too worried about the falls, as they are pretty much always there, but the wind ripped the sky apart on the way home and I really would’ve liked to get more representational colors than I did. Upper level clouds were going one way and lower clouds another. It was wild. I spent some time playing with histograms and color corrections and greyscale conversions but ultimately, it just wasn’t my day. The gallery contains some before/after shots, you can compare for yourself.

P.S. Who Are You and Where are You From?

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Who is visiting me from the Ukraine?

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