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Pennybacker Bridge



Taken at about midnight 7.26.2015
Austin, Texas Pennybacker bridge.
Camera: Sony SLT-A99v
Lens: Minolta 28mm F2.8
ISO: 1600
Exposu...
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Taken at about midnight 7.26.2015
Austin, Texas Pennybacker bridge.
Camera: Sony SLT-A99v
Lens: Minolta 28mm F2.8
ISO: 1600
Exposure: 30 sec. @ F5.6
Read less

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1 Comment | Report
Hoov PRO+
 
Hoov February 17, 2016
I really like how you have got this view at night. Awesome

Behind The Lens

Location
This photo was taken in Austin, Texas. This is known as the Pennybacker bridge and is a favorite place for both Austinites as well as visitors to Austin because of the rocky cliffs, hiking trails and awesome views of downtown Austin and the Colorado river. I was standing on an outcropping that was nearly at the top of the ledge on the Northwest side and I was facing south.
Time
This was taken just before midnight on July 25th 2015. I impatiently waited all day Saturday for evening to come. Finally at about 11pm I drove out to the bridge. It was getting very dark and although I had climbed those cliffs several times before, I had never done it at night and with a backpack full of camera equipment on my back. It was an entirely different experience, mostly scary. I was also somewhat surprised at how many other folks were out enjoying the area at that time of night.
Lighting
I am not an authority on lighting to be sure! I have been making photos since early 1980's but have always used available light. I did not even own a flash until maybe a year ago. I can share what I did learn this night about light. First, (and I don't say this thinking that it is not already a known fact by most photographers) when you think it is very dark, it isn't. distant light, moonlight, reflections all factor into the final exposure. I took well over 200 shots with 3 different lenses on this night and 190 of them were oops and "well that did not go as I thought it would". After much adjustments for the reflections and city lights in the distance I was able to dial in some really nice shots.
Equipment
Funny you should ask! Let me start by saying that I am a film photographer. I always have been. I have a darkroom in my home and I develop my film (BW and color) and make BW prints. I scan my color film. I like slow film and mostly shoot Ilford Pan F+ ISO50. With that said, I was on one of my first digital camera outings! Yes, I have a digital camera now. I am so stoked too! My film equipment consists of 2 cameras. Minolta Maxxum 9 and Maxxum 7. I have some nice Maxxum lenses and discovered that Sony A mount digital cameras work nicely with those lenses. So I now have a Sony A99v camera and that is what I used here. Camera: Sony A99v with Sony battery grip Lens: 28mm f2.8 Tripod: Marchioni Tiltall #4602 Remote: Remote shutter release
Inspiration
As a film photographer I just seemed to avoid long exposures and nights shots because I would waste so much film. I like candid street photography and scenes that do better in BW. So once I got the A99 I wanted to really push some new limits. I already knew that this spot at night was where I wanted to start. I initially planned to try for some milky way shots but with so much light it turned out to go so well. I just sat for several minutes looking out over the land and started to notice how heavy the traffic was.At first I was a bit annoyed, but then I realized that this was perfect. So, hanging precariously close to the edge of a very long drop, I started shooting.
Editing
Learning to use a digital camera also means learning post processing I guess. So I bought lightroom and went at it. The original exposure was 30s @ f5.6 +1ev. and the format was raw. I adjusted the color slightly to try to bring the bridge color back to its true rusty color. I reduced the highlights some for the headlight streaks and that is about it. I still have tons to learn.
In my camera bag
I have a Crumpler Karachi Outpost KO-02A Camera backpack and I carry everything in it. Sony A99v, Maxxum 9, 10 or more rolls of film, Maxxum lenses, 50mm 1.4, 50mm 2.8 macro, 85mm 1.7, 16mm fisheye, 28mm 2.8, 70-210 f4 Minolta light meter, ND filters, polarizer filters, pen, paper, gum,
Feedback
Know what you want in the shot you are trying to get and leave with that shot in your camera. But at the same time be ready for what you did not expect. The perfect shot comes and goes sometimes in seconds! if you are shooting digital, take a lot of pictures. Experiment! Always ask your self.. "I wonder what would happen if.." Try new things and find joy and peace in each and every moment. That moment may end up captured for others to share!

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