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AlanJ
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Elaine55 February 09, 2016
Fabulous tones in this cityscape
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marcbaechtold May 14, 2018
Join the conversation. Add a comment or even better, a critique. Let's get better together!
 
keepclicking October 29, 2018
Great photo
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PhotoMark December 25, 2018
Was this taken from 500 Fifth Avenue? Nice shot!
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AlanJ December 28, 2018
Not sure of address, but top of Rockefeller Centre

NYC nightfall



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Contest Finalist in My Favorite Building Photo Contest
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Behind The Lens

Location
From the top of the Rockefeller center in New York - the "top of the rock". Anyone can visit this tourist attraction. Looking south of course with the Empire State Building in the center of the shot, as befits its towering presence.
Time
Approaching 7pm on a September evening. I had been at the spot for nearly 2 hours ! My wife is very patient . . . We had been through the blue hour which yielded totally different shots. This was the golden hour and a wonderful evening it was.
Lighting
Light is everything of course, especially for landscapes or big picture cityscapes. You need to have patience and some planning to be in the right place at the right time - and some luck with the weather.
Equipment
Hand held (although I was stabilised by leaning against the building) with a Canon 70D and 24-105 Canon L series lens at 32mm (about 50mm on the 70D's crop sensor). Exposure f4 at 1/50 second using ISO640. You can see that the light level was quite low and it was falling fast.
Inspiration
Growing up as a child in the UK (and travelling very little) I was always fascinated by the Empire State Building from when it was the tallest building in the world. It seemed a million miles away and I never thought I would ever get there. I have now also spent a lot of time at the top there too ! I'm sure this shot had been done a thousand times before, but not by me ! In any case the light, clouds and processing can give you an image which is fairly unique.
Editing
It is difficult for digital cameras to reproduce the best of a scene like this. To help it along I processed it as a "single image HDR". I processed the RAW file 3 times at different exposures then blended them using Photomatix software. Finishing off was in Photoshop. HDR can be overdone of course and look pretty unrealistic so you have to be careful not to go wild with the sliders ! Some images lend themselves to it however and I think this is one - it brings out real depth and clarity and gives it extra impact. I don't think I've overdone it and this is pretty much as I remember the scene looked.
In my camera bag
2 Canon camera bodies when travelling, a Canon 24-105 L series zoom and a Canon 100-400 L series zoom. That pretty much covers anything I might want to capture.
Feedback
As I said above, do some research about what you want to capture and when might be the best time to be there. There's all sorts of apps these days which will tell you where the sun will be, sunset times etc. Patience is essential and keep shooting - the light changes every 5 minutes at that time of day and you're never certain exactly when will be optimal. Oh and if you are at a big tourist site like this one you will probably need some sharp elbows !

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