On Shakin’ What Yo’ Mama Gave You

By |2012-04-01T10:52:53+00:00Apr 1st, 2012|

In this case, yo’ mama would be Mother Nature. And she can be a fickle [ insert expletive here ], especially in Portland. Before moving here, all I heard about from my local friends was how often it rains. And, true to form, it does rain a lot. However, if rain was a determining factor preventing me from shooting, I’d never get any new frames. It rains here that often.

Still, it’s important to co-opt a positive outlook here. Making excuses for not going out to shoot will only lead to stagnation. As with many types of weather, rain can be a huge creative source of inspiration. You just need to figure out how to bend it to your serve your will. :)

This sort of weather is also very unpredictable, as was proven yesterday when I had the pleasure of strolling around Portland amidst spitting rain with my good friend, +Jeffrey Yen. The rain kept falling and we kept shooting.

Except about an hour into the walk, the rain and clouds decided to break away, leaving us with an absolutely gorgeous sky and radiant sunlight. We were in peak position to start rifling off shots. It really was wonderful – and it never would have happened had we decided to call off our get together due to crap weather.

Use inclement weather to your advantage. Your camera will be just fine. You will be just fine. Your images will thank you later. Trust me.

In terms of processing
This is the first tone-mapped HDR image that I’ve posted using my new Canon 5D Mark III. I’m still getting the hang of it but having the ability to create seven brackets in-camera is a beautiful thing. Now I know what all those Nikon and Canon 1D users have enjoyed all this time.

I tone-mapped in Photomatix primarily because the original shot had zero detail under these twin highways. The HDR processing fixed that quite nicely.

Stylization was done in Perfect Effects 3 by +onOne Software. I applied a custom duotone filter along with some tonal contrast for grit and my favorite Rice Paper Light texture. I also applied the tiniest amount of FocalPoint to the lower third of the frame – I liked the effect it produced and it helps draw the eye further up the image.

Finishing touches were applied in Adobe Lightroom 4.1 RC.

In album Pic Picks Over The Years (1 photo)

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  1. SUMIT MITTAL April 1, 2012 at 10:47 am - Reply

    where this

  2. Aaron Hockley April 1, 2012 at 10:47 am - Reply

    Interesting photo – I know exactly where you're standing and yet while I've seen many photos of the Fremont Bridge ramps, I don't think I've seen one from this vantage point. Well done.

  3. Richard April 1, 2012 at 11:01 am - Reply

    Gorgeous shot!

  4. Ivan Boden April 1, 2012 at 11:06 am - Reply

    Good post, and nice photo!

    I struggle with making time to get out shoot. Between my full time job, chores, being a father and husband, it’s hard to make time.

    I need my ME time to do photography, but lately, with rainy weather here in NJ/NY metro area, it’s been so frustrating.

    I’m hoping to upgrade to a 5DIII soon, and get out and shoot!

    Cheers, Ivan

  5. Shelly Gunderson April 1, 2012 at 11:35 am - Reply

    Very neat image!

  6. Michael Nall April 1, 2012 at 12:47 pm - Reply

    Very cool! I like the perspective in this shot!

  7. Joe Wilson April 1, 2012 at 2:53 pm - Reply

    I was shooting yesterday afternoon under the Freemont Bridge. I wonder if we were within yelling distance of each other. Ha! Small world. :-)

    Nice pic. Glad you’re enjoying that extra bracketing on the 5D3.


  8. M. Wilhelm April 2, 2012 at 3:58 am - Reply

    As a native of the Willamette Valley, I have adopted the mantra that the only weather forecast that really matters is the one you take at the trail head. There have been so many times when I have had experiences with the weather like the one you have described. Thanks for sharing some inspiration.

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