Friday, August 14, 2009

through the haze (before and after)

through the haze

Another photo for the before and after series. Here's the original, mostly unprocessed version:


This shot of the Chicago Skyline was taken from the Indiana Dunes.  I was climbing the Dune Succession trail, near West Beach, and used a Nikon D90 with a 55-200mm Nikon lens set as long as it could go.  The hill you see in the foreground is actually some ways in the distance from where I was standing.  The magic of long focal lengths is that it compacts distances and makes everything appear closer.

This is a shot that was a whole year in the making.  Well, sort of.  I visited the Dunes last summer and had wanted to capture the skyline, but at the time didn't have a long enough zoom with me to take the photo I wanted.  So I made sure to bring the 55-200 with me this time.  Maybe next year I'll visit with a 300mm!

I knew when I took this shot that I would make it black & white.  A hazy summer day is just a hazy summer day, but in black & white it becomes something much more interesting.  The decision to crop it square happened when I pulled it up on my computer.  It just seemed to work best with the composition.  I also straightened the horizon line, added a sepia tone (to the shadow areas), and finally overlaid a touch of film grain to give the photo more texture.

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