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Old Aug 19, 2011, 7:19 PM   #1
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The new (well, reasonably new): a MotivePower Industries MP36 locomotive.

The old: the Point Of Rocks train station on what was originally called the Metropolitan Line of the B&O railroad. It ran from Washington, DC, northwest to Point Of Rocks, MD. The line is now called the Brunswick line because it goes one more town up (Brunswick, MD) where the B&O had a roundhouse and freight yard.

Railroad buffs often state that this train station is one of the most photographed of any in the US. It was designed by Ephraim Francis Baldwin and built in 1875. Baldwin designed most of the stations on the Met Line and many of them, including this victorian gothic one, are preserved and listed on the Montgomery County historic register. Here's another view of it:



It's tricky to photograph because the large roof overhangs (which probably sheltered waiting passengers very well) throw a lot of the building into deep shade.

Ted

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Old Aug 19, 2011, 8:11 PM   #2
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Man, you should post more often. We always get not only super shots, but an interesting history story too!

Half of all my building shots have the vertical lines slanted. You captured that railroad station exactly straight up and down in both shots. So you obviously have the patience to compose your shots well, something i need to work on. For some reason, I am better at capturing moving animals, than in shooting static subjects.
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 9:07 PM   #3
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Ted, these are superb. The first image ALMOST had me thinking "tilt-shift" I can almost hear a steam locomotive making it's approach in the second one. Very picturesque, indeed!
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 9:26 PM   #4
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Thanks, Guys. I'd like to claim I have the patience Steven praises me for, but it's closer to Gary's tilt-shift. It's the best software for doing tilt-shift type corrections: DxO Optics. Another secret: DxO can do a very mild 1-exposure HDR which is why the parts of the building that were almost black in the original image, are actually visible.

Of course, it helps to have some experience in using it so you can set up the shot with the end resut in mind, so that it's more easily corrected.

A while ago someone over at DPR asked if DxO is any good. Before any of us who use it could respond, a bunch of arrogant folks insisted that there is NO reason to use it. (Not surprisingly, Bill Turner aka Bootstrap was one of them.) So weDxO users just decided screw it, who needs the aggrivation, and kept silent.

Ted

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Old Aug 19, 2011, 10:17 PM   #5
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Well, I'm still impressed. You have to have the shot nailed, even before you use the software. I'm curious, how much does that software cost? If I ever decide to do more building shots, that would probably be of use to me, even though I'm not very experienced in doing a lot of PP.
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Old Aug 20, 2011, 10:04 AM   #6
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Quote:
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Well, I'm still impressed. You have to have the shot nailed, even before you use the software. I'm curious, how much does that software cost? If I ever decide to do more building shots, that would probably be of use to me, even though I'm not very experienced in doing a lot of PP.
DxO Optics Pro is a full-featured post processing app just as Lightroom is, and is the same price ($300). It is, for me, much easier to use than Lightroom, but then I find Adobe's stream of thought as evidenced in how their applications work, to be completely alein to me. The problem with all of this is that except for perspective correction, Steven R could have all the PP tools he needs just with Adobe Camera Raw (ACR). Unfortunately Adobe won't sell you ACR - it's bundled with Photoshop, Lightroom, or Photoshop Elements (and in PSE it's disabled so that it only works on RAW files, not JPEG - they use the Microsoft business model).

I use ACR for 95% of my PP, just because it's easy and very fast - possibly the only Adobe app I've ever used that makes sense to me. I use DxO when I want to take my time and play in the darkroom, or when I need perspective correction, or when I have an image with extreme DR that needs a simple, mild HDR correction. (I used that in the flamingo shot because the ones on the left were in bright sun and the ones on the right were in deep shade.) I only use Photoshop itself when I want to apply a NIK filter - DxO doesn't seem to have or at least distribute the APIs needed for others to creat plugins ('ya gotta love the French). The NIK filter I use more than others is the polarizer, since blue skies around here disappeared with the advent of the high volume of commercial jet aircraft flights.

That was a long answer to your question, because I suspect what you're really looking for is an inexpensive app that only does perspective correction. I'm sure they're out there but I never looked for one. You can also do that in Photoshop but I hate Photoshop.

Ted

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Old Aug 20, 2011, 10:31 AM   #7
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Regarding DxO Optics' 1-exposure HDR capability, here is a comparison. This is the processed image I posted in Steven's "Does anyone know what kind of bird these are??" thread:





and this is the out of camera image - note how blown out the left flamingo already is:




Note that this is not the same HDR technology that Zig does with Photomatix, where he's combining multiple exposures. This is simply correcting an image with too wide a DR, using very sophisticated processing unseen by the user.

Ted

Last edited by tkurkowski; Aug 20, 2011 at 10:34 AM.
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Old Aug 20, 2011, 7:36 PM   #8
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Hey Ted

I was wondering why both of those pics look so good colourwise - was it just the E500 .. good to know it was a combo of the camera and DxO!

Ted, DxO's had some pretty rave reviews how do you find the output from the Oly ORfs ??? Better than ACR or about the same ?

Cheers

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Old Aug 22, 2011, 1:04 PM   #9
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Hi, Harj

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Originally Posted by HarjTT View Post
Hey Ted
I was wondering why both of those pics look so good colourwise - was it just the E500 .. good to know it was a combo of the camera and DxO!
It's not particularly DxO - I don't think its vibrance slider is better for color than ACR's. It's mostly the E500 and some of it is the NIK polarizer software filter. When you have a sky with some clouds, that tool is awesome.


[QUOTE=HarjTT;1249867
how do you find the output from the Oly ORfs ??? Better than ACR or about the same ?
Harj[/QUOTE]

ACR does a good job with Oly ORFs when you dial in the PP you want, like the Fill slider. If you spend time with the DxO preset settings you can do better than ACR. But mostly I like to use it for the things ACR doesn't do - perspective (keystone) correction and HDR.


Quote:
Originally Posted by HarjTT View Post
DxO's had some pretty rave reviews
Mostly on your side of the pond - I don't think it gets very much attention in North America. A lot of that may well be what we call NIH. (Not Invented Here)

Ted
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Old Aug 24, 2011, 8:30 PM   #10
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Great pictures... it is the first one HDR..?
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