Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Newest image is entitled "Noche de Coronado." by D."Bodhi" Smith

This newest image is entitled "Noche de Coronado." It was captured last Wednesday on a very calm, windless, clear, and moonless evening here in SoCal. This is a bit of a departure for me, as I seldom, if ever, take images of city buildings...but the stars and the reflection, well, I guess that is more like me.

The name is literally translated as, "Crowning Night" but could also mean "Night From Coronado"...both translations apply quite well to this image, so hence the title...

As many of you know, for the better part of 8 months now, I have been trying to capture a magical image of a reef on Coronado beach for clients of mine who were engaged and married on that very spot close to the Hotel Del Coronado. I have been patient (and thankfully so have they) waiting for the conditions to be right for the image i have in my mind's eye: I need a very high tide of 6 feet happening at sunset combined with clouds in the sky.

Last Wednesday I drove down to Coronado Island to give it a try and see if I could get lucky with mother nature, for the conditions were close with a 5 foot tide happening at sunset, but no clouds showed and the tide was ultimately not high enough. Closed out once again, bummer. Of course, I will not give up and I will be trying again in mid-May when the conditions are perfect hoping to get a cloud system passing over one of the nights during a 96-hour window of opportunity.

So while I was walking back to my Xterra along the beachway, I noticed that it was unusually calm for Coronado Island. I got in my truck and went over to the other side of the island to try my luck with another image I have had a vision of taking for a couple of years now...my vision needs a windless calm in order to optimize reflections I want to capture in the San Diego Bay at night...

This is another one of those famous scenes that is photographed by millions of people...it is taken from a vantage point across the bay on Coronado Island showing the San Diego skyline at night and its glowing reflection in the water. Easy spot to find, easy composition to make, easy to take with a little bit extra exposure time....but I wanted to capture something especially different, something my style of uniqueness. I wanted to create something that is impossible to capture in true reality at this location with one or even multiple exposures with a camera, as there is just too much light pollution created by the city lights to pull it off.

To get my vision, an image would need to be created from two separate exposures...using an exposure taken of the stars in the San Diego desert which I already had captured to be combined with the image of this Skyline taken on this evening. Of course, things would be considerably more technical for me to get the composition I wanted to create, along with needing things in nature to align correctly for me to match the image in my mind's eye with those taken by my camera turned into one composite image....

I needed the calm night to enhance the reflection of the lights and eventually the stars in the water. It also had to be clear and cloudless, with no moon to help create the final blended composition. This is an image composed of 2 separate exposures: one for the city and the skyline reflection in the water; the other for the stars in the sky (the stars' reflection is explained below). Using Photoshop CS6, I had to manually blend these two images together to create the composition you see here.

Camera settings: For the city and city lights reflection part of the image (not stars): ISO-100, 52mm at f/2.8 for 123 seconds using two Lee Proglass filters (.9ND & .6ND) to block down the light 5 stops and permit a much longer exposure while using such a large aperture as f/2.8. I wanted the larger aperture to soften the sky behind the city and the lights in the foreground as much as I could. For the stars part of the image: ISO-1250, 24mm at f/1.4 for 15 seconds using no filters (this is also a different lens than the one used to capture the skyline scene). The stars' reflection is a post-production addition using editing software to create the final effect on the image, an effect that is made further possible by the use of the long exposure of the city lights in the water making the bay flat and glasslike...

I hope this image and message find you well.

‪#‎Dolica‬ ‪#‎Tripods‬ ‪#‎Lee‬ ‪#‎Filters‬ ‪#‎Proglass‬ ‪#‎ND‬ ‪#‎LongExposure‬ ‪#‎LE‬ ‪#‎Nikon‬ ‪#‎D800‬ ‪#‎Nikkor‬ #24-70mm ‪#‎Seascape‬ ‬ ‪#‎Bay #Harbor ‪#‎Pacific‬ ‪#‎Ocean‬‬ ‪#‎Landscape‬ ‬ #Coronado #Island #San #Diego #Skyline #Reflection #Stars #Night #Sky


No comments:

Post a Comment