HDR

A Color Efex Pro Recipe to send your Photographs back in time

Very easy technique to create that vintage look

When I go out and shoot landscapes or cityscapes, my goal is not always to create a realistic looking image, sometimes I want to create a piece of art that could resemble a real scenery but at a different location or time.

Flo's Cafe Cars Land at Disneyland Anaheim in HDR

My intention with this photograph of Flo's Cafe in Cars Land at Disneyland Anaheim was to make it look like an old gas-station from the 50's or 60's, somewhere along Route 66, in a town named Radiator Springs.

The biggest challenge was to get rid of the Disney crowds. As you can imagine, this area of Disney's California Adventure Park is very crowded but there are certain dates and times of the day plus some photography techniques that you can use to your advantage. 

First of all, we went there on a weekday in February and I shot this while the evening parade took place to limit the crowds to an absolute minimum. 

In order to capture all details in the shadows and highlights, I shot 3 different exposures and I've used shutter-speeds between 30 seconds and 2 minutes to make all moving subjects disappear. My remaining issues were a guy leaning onto the pole on the left and the official Disney photographer that wouldn't move an inch to take pictures of tourists in front of the cafe but I got rid of both thanks to Photoshop's Content-Aware feature. 

I really love Nik's Color Efex Pro 4 and I'm using it a lot. Color Efex Pro provides dozens of filters that you can mix and save as recipes. You can download the recipe that I've used for this image. I named it Cars Land VintageHave fun.

The Magic of Disney in 21 pictures

Disney World in Orlando, Florida is possibly one of the most photographed amusement parks in the World so it's quite tough to create a set of photographs that don't look like the gazillion others that are taken every year. 

I went to Disney World with my wife and 3 kids and concentrated on shooting 3 parks in the evenings. I usually travelled very light with just one body (Canon EOS 5D Mark III), two lenses (Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L and the 50mm f/1.4) plus my Gitzo tripod that I carried using the camera-strap from the 5DIII. I was first worried that I would get into trouble by bringing a tripod into the parks but the folks at Disney are very cool about it, no problem with it at all.

I didn't shoot in Disney's Animal Kingdom because that park usually closes at 7pm, so twilight pictures were out of question.

Park #1 - Disney's Hollywood Studios

All of the pictures of this park were shot along Sunset Blvd as I was there just one evening so I hadn't enough time to cover the rest of the park during twilight time. 

 

 

Park #2: Disney's Epcot Center

Epcot Center is my favorite park to photograph. There are 11 pavillons around a lake and each represents a different country.

Make sure to stay until after the daily fireworks that takes place at 9pm. The park officially closes at 9pm but they let you stay in much longer, the rides will be closed but I had plenty of time to walk around and shoot pictures.


Park #3: Disney's Magic Kingdom

I've been to Magic Kingdom many times so while my family watched the Main Street Electrical Parade, I wandered around the areas of the park that were pretty much deserted and shot my nithgtime HDR's. I shot all of below night-time pictures during the same evening  that shows you that you have plenty of time to cover different areas before it gets too dark.


The 2 pictures below are iPhone pictures shot with the Instagram app - the best photo app on the iPhone in my opinion - a shame they got acquired by Facebook...