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pedroquintela

Take my Breath Away



I dreamed about this image for a very long time. Since my childhood I´ve been visiting this amazing city of Salamanca, Spain. So I planned carefully this trip ...
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I dreamed about this image for a very long time. Since my childhood I´ve been visiting this amazing city of Salamanca, Spain. So I planned carefully this trip and had the luck of being there and bring the moment with me forever.
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Awards

Contest Finalist in Gorgeous Rivers Photo Contest
Peer Choice Award
Contest Finalist in Social Exposure Photo Contest Vol 11
Peer Award
Absolute Masterpiece
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Superb Composition
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Magnificent Capture
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Top Choice
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All Star
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Outstanding Creativity
Txilekoa davidharris518 nelsoncanilhoncanilho DalvikPhotography Moson richardjackson
Superior Skill
tomwillis Gaynell patrickcoughlin

Emotions

Impressed
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Top ClassTM

Everything Water Photo ContestTop 10 class
Everything Water Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
This Is My City Photo ContestTop 10 class
This Is My City Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol11Top 20 class
My Best Shot Photo Contest Vol11Top 20 class week 1
Mirror Moments Photo ContestTop 20 class
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Composing With Arches Photo ContestTop 10 class
My Favorite City Photo Contest Speed SeriesTop 10 class
Favorite Travel Memory Photo ContestTop 10 class
Favorite Travel Memory Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
Perfect Reflections Photo ContestTop 10 class
Favorite Travel Memory Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Perfect Reflections Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
This Is Europe Photo ContestTop 10 class
This Is Europe Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
I Love My City Photo ContestTop 20 class
I Love My City Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
City Sunsets Photo ContestTop 10 class
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ViewBug Photography Awards 2018Top 10 class
ViewBug Photography Awards 2018Top 10 class week 2
Travel Photography ProjectTop 10 class
Travel Photography ProjectTop 10 class week 1
Bridges In The Night Photo ContestTop 10 class
Bridges In The Night Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
Bridges In The Night Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Spectacular Bridges Photo ContestTop 10 class
Spectacular Bridges Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Europe Photo ContestTop 10 class
Europe Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Anything Water Photo ContestTop 10 class
Creative Landscapes Photo ContestTop 10 class
Anything Water Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Creative Landscapes Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
Creative Landscapes Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Gorgeous Rivers Photo ContestTop 10 class
Towns In The Winter Photo ContestTop 30 class
Towns In The Winter Photo ContestTop 20 class week 1
Long Exposure Experiments Photo ContestTop 30 class
Long Exposure Experiments Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Compositions 101 Photo Contest vol4Top 20 class
Compositions 101 Photo Contest vol4Top 20 class week 3
Strong Foregrounds Photo ContestTop 20 class
Strong Foregrounds Photo ContestTop 10 class week 3
Compositions 101 Photo Contest vol4Top 20 class week 2
ViewBug Photography AwardsTop 10 class
ViewBug Photography AwardsTop 10 class week 1
Strong Foregrounds Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
Compositions 101 Photo Contest vol4Top 20 class week 1
Strong Foregrounds Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Promenades And Boardwalks Photo ContestTop 10 class
Promenades And Boardwalks Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Diagonals And Composition Photo Contest Vol 1Top 10 class
Diagonals And Composition Photo Contest Vol 1Top 10 class week 1
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City In The Night Photo ContestTop 20 class
City In The Night Photo ContestTop 10 class week 2
City In The Night Photo ContestTop 10 class week 1
Social Exposure Photo Contest Vol 11Top 10 class
Social Exposure Photo Contest Vol 11Top 10 class week 1

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5 Comments | Report
Paul-Stapleton PRO
 
Paul-Stapleton November 01, 2017
Beautiful picture, you have captured this so well. I love the soft light and keep coming back to look at it, well done :-)
pedroquintela PRO+
pedroquintela November 01, 2017
I appreciate very much your words, Paul. Truth to be told, I was willing to make since a long time ago. Best wishes!
Rafaphoto PRO+
 
Rafaphoto December 27, 2017
Spectacular. Beautifully framed
pedroquintela PRO+
pedroquintela December 27, 2017
You´re very kind, thank you!
samanthawilson25 PRO
 
samanthawilson25 May 12, 2018
I really like the vantage point and the composition of this photo :).
pedroquintela PRO+
pedroquintela May 15, 2018
Oh, it was made in an amazing day. I wish someday can be back there. Thank you!!
manueladurson PRO
 
manueladurson July 28, 2018
Very beautiful and calming
pedroquintela PRO+
pedroquintela August 14, 2018
Really appreciate it! Thanks!
ricrog
 
ricrog August 14, 2018
This is so cool!
pedroquintela PRO+
pedroquintela August 14, 2018
Thanks so much!

Behind The Lens

Location
This image was made in the city of Salamanca, in Spain. The bridge is called Enrique Estevan
Time
It was shot on August, precisely at 21:39 when this amazing gold glow emerged. I went an hour early to scout the location and with an app locate where the sun will set. Despite have seen all the data available at home, before the trip, I was anxious and willing to have an extra help from the photography gods. For me it was nerve wracking because it was a unique chance to get it right.
Lighting
Let´s put it this way, Salamanca is known as the "Golden" city due to the color of many of his buildings, specially the historical ones. So in my mind it was all about getting the spot where I could use the lateral saturated light that usually we have in Portugal and Spain during the golden hour. Usually we only chase the light that comes from ahead of us, trying to get that sun rising on the sky. Here the idea was the opposite. I would use the angle and warmth from south to get reflections and warm tones on the bridge and the older side of the town. So here´s a tip - use the light to enlighten buildings, people face´s, getting a strong and moody atmosphere. The sun in front of us isn´t the only way to shoot landscapes or cityscapes! Also this scenes should be done at sunrise or sunset, to get vibrant skies and harsh contrasty scenes. At midway is just impossible.
Equipment
For this trip I was doubting about the gear to get. My initial thought was to get the Canon 5Ds, with that gigantic 50mp sensor. Then I realize that weight on my camera backpack would be an issue, as well the value of gear that I would take abroad. So took all the lenses out, took a deep breath and start selecting what would be the best beat for doing landscape and some portraits. Finally I opted to get the light Canon 6d, two lenses (EF 16-35 f/4 IS L and EF 85 F/1.8). The backpack chosen was the Lowepro flipside 200, that is amazing because has an anti-theft system. You can only access to his inside from the side that´s in your back, so no one could open it on the streets withouth me noticing it. Inside I was also carrying my important set of Nisi - the V5 Pro holder and 6 filters (ND and GND). The tripod was the worst thing to carry because of its weight. I use a Manfrotto 055 Xprob3 with a Feisol Cb-40d head. The combo is great because you can´t get much sturdiness than that. The upside is the heavy it is when you are carrying it around all day. It´s also bulky. In those cases I usually have my better half assistance to carry it. Another things that I always never leave at home are several batteries - although the 6d has a huge battery life, at least 4 sd cards, a microfiber cloth, a remote shutter (with a cord and another infrared).
Inspiration
First of all I have to say that this is a quite emotional image to me. During many years of my life I went to Spain, particularly to this town of Salamanca with my grandparents. For a kid and then a teenager going abroad was unique. So my memories were boiling allover when we left home. So this had to be a sort of tribute to them. My main inspiration was a paint that my grandparents had in their house. I don´t know who the author was, only that was bought in Salamanca during the 80´s. It was painted from the right side of the bridge because at that time of the day (morning I guess) the sun was behind it. I looked at it during decades and always made me want to be back, experience such wonderful time of my life. The basic idea was to get a similar view but during sunset, in a lower level near the river to get an angle that could give importance to the bridge, guiding the viewers eye from it, across the river till the big cathedral on the other shore.
Editing
Post-processing is, at least for me, almost important as the act of shooting. I have an immense joy using my editing software to open and enhance my raw files. I have a workflow that I´ve created through the years and works great for me. In this particular image I opened the shadows, closed the highlights a little, enhanced the blacks, darkened a little the whites, increased the clarity. This was made on camera raw. Then made some curves adjustments to increase local contrast and colors. My idea was to preserve the light but at the same time create points of interest on the frame to guide the viewers look. It was achieved with the dodge and burn technique. Finally made another adjustment on camera raw with several radial filters to get a natural vignette and slightly decrease the clarity to help creating an ethereal look .
In my camera bag
First of all I confess that I love gear! I even wrote someday an article, that luckily was share by Adobe, where I tried to exorcized my daemons about it. We all know that´s called GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome). But what can we do? In my bag I carry two bodies, a Canon 6d and a 5Ds. The first is light and has great low light capabilities. The other is just amazing, having 50mp on a dslr! My lenses are specific to my needs, since I shoot mainly landscapes, storytelling and some portraits. So I have the EF16-35 F/4 IS L, EF24-70 F/4 IS L, EF 70-200 F/4 IS L, EF 50 F/1.4, EF 85 F/1.8. Always have several Sd cards, two remotes (one with cord and another IR), 6 batteries, a NISi Pro V5 holder with 6 filters (BGN and ND), microfiber cloths, a small bottle of gel to clean my hands, a large hat, photographer gloves and a head flashlight.
Feedback
The keys to get great images are several. The basic ones are knowing very well your camera. In this case I need to get a slow shutter speed to increase the reflections, preserve the highlights on the bridge/cathedral and get a moody atmosphere. How did I do it? First searched online for all the info possible. Position of the sun, best locations around the bridge, where could I park the car safely (to stay relax). Then in location arrived early, about 1 hour before sunset. By doing that I tried several compositions to see what could be the best one. I finally realize that I low angle, with interest from the foreground till the background will be the best. I had the luck to find vegetation. This made a natural frame for the viewer. Then measured the light to get the adequate filters, in this case a 1.2 NGD for the sky. Tried also a 6 stop ND filter but prefer to switch to a circular polarizer to bring more contrast to the scene, gaining 2 stops to make the water smoother but not too much. Then focused manually, at an aperture of f/14 to get maximum depth of field and sharpness. Checked also the histogram, trying not to have blown out whites or the shadows too dark. Another important thing related to gear is the tripod. I know how annoying is to carry one, even more when moving in cities. Thought it is your best ally to shoot landscapes. Withouth it an image like this would be impossible. Shooting handheld at f/14 and 1/2 sec is possible but not withouth losing details due to minimum shaking. So invest in a good one and it will last for decades with basic maintenance. Landscape is an art that should preferably do at sunrise and sunset, when you get the best of the light. So be there before it, set your framing, enjoy the scene and be prepared to get the best out of it when the light is at its best, golden. In this particular image the great thing was getting a lateral sunset. It helped getting great lighting on the bridge and buildings. Also have a glow that has a great deal of importance to the image itself. Finally, try and try again till you get what you want. Nothing good in life comes for free. And while doing it, enjoy the process! Happy shooting to all!

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