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Old May 8, 2005, 8:42 AM   #1
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Wagner's opera "Die Walkure" was on the TV here yesterday so I thought of this one. In Wagner's Ring Cycle, two giants are commissionedby the gods to build a new Valhalla,approached by agrand rainbow bridge. The gods fail to pay the bill, and this leads after 5 days of very loud singing to "The Twilight of the Gods".
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Old May 8, 2005, 10:37 PM   #2
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awesome shot :-D

kind of a bridge to a fantasy too :-D

i've never had a chance to shoot rainbows before..this one sticks out very well :-D

Vito
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Old May 8, 2005, 11:11 PM   #3
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Alan, very nice shot. Do you have any idea why the area of sky inside the rainbow is lighter than the outside. There is a portion of a second rainbow visible in the upper left corner. I may be imagining it but it appears the the sky above the second rainbow is lighter. I don't know if it is the optics of rainbows that is doing this or what. Do you (or anyone else) have any ideas on the subject. Did you use a polarizing filter. I would be curious to see what a polarizer would do with a rainbow. Probably nothing since the sun is directly behind the viewer and polarizers work best at 90 degrees from the sun.

(edit) It occurs to me that the lighter sky is caused by the falling rain but the drops are too low in the sky to cause the prismatic effect. The same may be true for the raindrops above the second rainbow. In this case, the drops are too high.

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Old May 8, 2005, 11:45 PM   #4
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photosbyvito wrote:
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i've never had a chance to shoot rainbows before
Vito, Cal,

The key to rainbow shots is 'underexposure' (according to the camera's metering system) andwide, multiple exposure bracketing, so that at least one is acceptable, or roughly right.

Ideally, you should be able to see clearly that the sky is brighter inside the rainbow than outside. This is because at low angles sunlight from behind you goes into the raindrops in front of you, bending a bit as it enters, bounces off the inside surface of the drop, and comes back to you, giving a bright sky. At high angles, the light goes into the raindrop, and then goes straight on (with another bend as it leaves), giving the dark sky outside the rainbow.

The angles at which these boundaries occur vary with wavelength, and that's why rainbows appear. The second order rainbow is, I think, because as in most optical phenomena, the whole thing recurs faintly at the higher angles corresponding to multiples of the light's wavelength.

You need to be somewhere with bright, showery weather, so book an intermittently wet holiday in NW Europe in Spring! Or maybe Selvin gets rainbows in Hawaii for the proposed jumbo jet outing?

This one is my favourite rainbow, from the Outer Hebrides as usual, but it's not appropriate to the challenge - if it was a bridge, the gods and the dead heroes would slide right back down on to the beach....
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Old May 9, 2005, 6:24 AM   #5
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Alan,

Thanks for the different take - 'thinking outside the box' so to speak. Also thanks for the helpful tips on shooting rainbows. I also agree - that second pic you posted is great.

John
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Old May 9, 2005, 1:05 PM   #6
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Alan, your explanation of the rainbows reminds me of oneI made about red sunsets and a viewer said he preferred to just enjoy them. Go figure.

In any even lovely shots they can be difficult to meter properly.

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