On Remembering Where You Came From

By |2012-06-18T21:04:05+00:00Jun 18th, 2012|

Not that I necessarily came from this particular room but rather, this particular genre of photography is the one that really got it all going for me – especially as it relates to my presence on social media.

I owe this shot pretty much entirely to my good friend whom I miss dearly as he lives on the ass-opposite side of the country now, +Bob Lussier. Bob is an awesome photographer who shares the same passion for tone-mapping these abandoned and forlorn environments with me. He also is the man with the plan, as it were, and had ready access to these locations – and never hesitated to share that access.

In recent months, the majority of my work has revolved around landscape and nature scenery. It’s what is most accessible, abundant and available for where I now live. It offers me a whole new opportunity to learn a style of photography that I have rarely had exposure to and it has done wonders in terms of teaching me how to see differently.

However, with all that said, I still truly do miss shooting this type of abandonment photography with all of the grittiness, grunge and overall skewed tonal range. It is easily my favorite style of photography and I wanted to take a minute to share an oldie-but-goodie that I processed this weekend. This shot was taken back in 2010 during one of my first visits to this mill and I remember it fondly because of how much fodder this location offered.

Thanks again for all the friendship, Bob. You’re welcome out here anytime.

In terms of processing
This is a nine-exposure tone-mapped image using Photomatix. I took it with my Canon 5D Mark II and Canon 17mm Tilt Shift lens.

Stylization was done in Perfect Effects 3. I applied a minimal amount of Lord of the Rings and Tonal Contrast. Most of the heavy lifting was done with a custom FocalPoint 2 mask, rendering the background slightly ouf of focus. Both products are by +onOne Software.

Final touches were applied in Lightroom 4.1.

In album Pic Picks Over The Years (1 photo)

Google+: View post on Google+


  1. Scott Wyden Kivowitz June 18, 2012 at 9:30 am - Reply

    Old school and still awesome!

  2. Albert Vuvu Konde June 18, 2012 at 9:32 am - Reply

    Nice d.o.f

  3. Sandra Parlow June 18, 2012 at 9:33 am - Reply

    I hadn't realized this was your first love Brian!  Very nicely done!  I'd like to get a bit more into this kind of stuff  but like you, it's not something that is readily available to me where I live.

  4. kimberly pemberton June 18, 2012 at 9:36 am - Reply

    i'll admit it.
    i didn't read your annoyingly long novel lovely post again, but in my defence, the light{s} at the end of the tunnel are really distracting. 

  5. Brian Matiash June 18, 2012 at 9:41 am - Reply

    +kimberly pemberton You love my words. You just don't know it yet.

    Thank you, everyone!

  6. Chris Helms June 18, 2012 at 9:43 am - Reply

    Beautiful artwork! Your techniques really bring life and soul back into these old spaces.

  7. Brian Matiash June 18, 2012 at 9:47 am - Reply

    +Chris Helms Thank you!

  8. Brad Sloan June 18, 2012 at 9:50 am - Reply

    Like this big. Think I'm going to shoot in the city for a while today while Mandy has her work shoot. Any suggestions?

  9. Robert McMillan June 18, 2012 at 9:50 am - Reply

    Love the image and post. Are you still using Magic lantern. I'm thinking of downloading it to shoot brakets on my 60d. Any input would be appreciated

  10. Brian Matiash June 18, 2012 at 9:54 am - Reply

    +Brad Sloan You're still in PDX? I'm a fan of shooting around Union Station as well as all along the Southeast industrial areas.

  11. Brian Matiash June 18, 2012 at 9:54 am - Reply

    +Robert McMillan Thanks! I still use ML on my 5D2. Whenever they end up releasing a version for the 5D3, I'm sure I'll give it a go, too! :)

  12. Michael White June 18, 2012 at 9:59 am - Reply

    Nice job, Brian :)

  13. Kelly-Shane Fuller June 18, 2012 at 10:45 am - Reply

    +Brad Sloan Union Station area is a good place to start for sure!

  14. Darlene Hildebrandt June 18, 2012 at 10:58 am - Reply

    What's Magic Lantern and what does it do +Brian Matiash ?  I love urban stuff like this too but have never had the chance to get inside places.  I'd love to do more like this. 

  15. Brian Matiash June 18, 2012 at 11:17 am - Reply

    +Darlene Hildebrandt Magic Lantern is a firmware hack (I use the term rather loosely) that extends the functionality of the Canon 5D Mark II (along with some other models). It adds 9 exposure bracketing, intervalometer, and a slew of other audio/video functions.

    It's donationware and I was happy to give the devs some money for their hard work. So long as you follow their instructions explicitly to install, you'll be fine.

  16. Darlene Hildebrandt June 18, 2012 at 11:22 am - Reply

    I just ordered the MkIII so I think I'm good.  What the heck is an intervalometer? 

  17. Ryan Turner June 18, 2012 at 11:26 am - Reply

    +Darlene Hildebrandt An intervalometer is a shutter release that allows you to set the intervals at which you want to shoot pictures. So you can tell it you want 1000 pictures over 3 hours and it will figure out the intervals. Or you can just say 1 picture a minute for 1000 minutes. Any interval you would like. :)

  18. Darlene Hildebrandt June 18, 2012 at 11:27 am - Reply

    oh cool! 

  19. Bob Lussier June 18, 2012 at 8:30 pm - Reply

    Dude! This shot brings back some very fond memories! I think you just brought a tear to my eye! Thanks for the shout-out and the very kind words.Oh, and the open door. Might have to take you up on that!

  20. Daniel Novak June 19, 2012 at 5:28 am - Reply

    Nice light at the end of the tunnel :-)

  21. Ron Bearry June 19, 2012 at 6:42 am - Reply

    Interesting composition and lighting. Your comments about different kinds of subject matter also ring true for me. I live in the NW part of the U.S. and sometimes long for more urbex environments.

  22. Richard June 19, 2012 at 7:41 pm - Reply

    I have to say I miss the stories of your urban explorations with Bob and the great images that resulted from those little outings.
    Poring over your two websites back then really got me juiced up to try and do some of my own.

  23. Luis June 20, 2012 at 12:24 pm - Reply

    Love these shots of derelict places and matching HDR stylization. Both you and Bob are masters of that art. Looking forward for more!

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