A Tall Building
A tall building deserves a tall photo, right? I am always impressed by the size of the Dolphin hotel at Walt Disney World whenever we visit. Yes, I know there are taller buildings in the world, but we don’t live in an area full of skyscrapers. Besides, Central Florida is not full of skyscrapers, either. So seeing something large is still slightly unusual for us.
Also, I am always impressed by the bold architectural style of Michael Graves, and that can be seen here. Who says architecture has to be just a bunch of plain-colored boxes? Why not make it interesting? Yes, I know that the fish things don’t really look like dolphins, but that is what they call them, anyway. Don’t ask me why.
Interestingly, the fountains at the front of the building were turned off. There is usually water flowing down the series of seashells and around the large dolphin/fish-things. I think they were doing some maintenance of some kind, so we missed that while we were there. Not a big deal, and you might not have noticed it if I had not said anything about it.
However, this photo was a little more involved than just pointing the camera and clicking the shutter button. Read on to find out…
About the Photo
For photos such as this, I would usually swap to the fisheye lens. After all, the building is too large to fit in the frame with a regular lens from where I was standing. But I thought for this one I would try something different to avoid the bending of lines that the fisheye lens produces. I like that fisheye look, but why not try something different sometimes? That would set this photo apart from the ones that I have taken in the past few years.
This photo is a composite of three different photos. I took one of the lower portion, aimed the camera up for a second photo, and then aimed the photo even higher for the third photo. I then used Photoshop’s automatic merge function to put all three photos together into one.
There were a couple of issues with this method. The first was actually my fault. In my haste to get it done without any people around, I did not set the camera correctly. The right thing to do would have been to change to manual mode and have all of the exposures the same. But I let the camera do the metering for each photo. From that, the bottom area, being darker because of the shadows, was actually overexposed as the camera tried to compensate for the darkness. And the top photo was darker because the camera tried to compensate for the brightness of the sky. Fortunately, I was able to tweak each of these areas manually in Photoshop, so that you hopefully cannot tell a difference.
The second issue was that Photoshop did not quite line up everything correctly. Because it leaves the separate exposures as different layers, it was easy to apply a layer mask to adjust what showed up from which layer, and then everything looked right.
After all of that, I did some of my usual processing techniques as if this were just one photo, which by that point it more or less was.
Just some behind-the-scenes information on doing something different. See more from our trip in the June 2018 Florida Trip archive.
Sometimes when things seem difficult, there might be another way of doing things. Sometimes you can figure it out for yourself. Or sometimes you might have to see what someone else did in a similar situation.
Too often, we spend too much time trying to figure out why something will not work the way we are trying to do things. Instead, that energy can be put to better use by trying to find another way to get the same thing done. Often, you might realize that the new way that you found to do something is actually better than what you were trying to do.
Don’t get me wrong. Some things in life are very much black and white, no matter how you might try to look at it. But other things have many paths to reach the same end.
Don’t spend too much time trying to force your way down one path when another path to the same place might be the better way to go. Know when to try something different, even if it means having to back up on the path you are on to get to that other path. Those steps back might be worth it in the long run.
Besides, sometimes finding a new way to do things might be fun. It sometimes makes me feel better for having learned something new, especially if I see more ways to use that new path in the future.
Don’t be afraid to change course to get to your goal!
But as for you, be strong; don’t be discouraged, for your work has a reward. - 2 Chronicles 15:7
(More) About the Photo
Photo: A composite of three Raw exposures, processed in Photoshop. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10
Lens: Olympus M.Zukio 25mm f1.8
Date: June 14, 2018
Location: Dolphin Hotel, Walt Disney World, Florida