Out in the city with a new toy!

I wrote about some of my plans for a visit to Budapest a couple of weeks ago and was happy to see that 11 out of my 12 images were accepted over the last few days.

I do not get out in the cit and shoot architecture very often as I live in the middle of nowhere but did learn some new things and also got a chance to put my new toy into action!


Budapest is a beautiful city day or night but as in all cities it does have its ugly side, at night it is dealt with by dramatically lighting the beautiful bits of the city but that in itself presents problems. The lighting whilst dramatic is very bright and it is very very difficult to get a good exposure on both the lights and the infrastructure. I decided upon a very early start (4:30am) and headed down to the Danube before catching my train home and get some pictures of the city in the quiet. Fortunately the lights had been largely turned off which allowed me to get a much longer exposures which to me made for much better pictures, I had tried this shot on many previous occasions and never been happy with the rendering of the masonry as the lighting overwhelmed it so much!

The other joy of being out and about at stupid o'clock is that you are likely to be one of the few people around, which is gold dust for shooting for RF. Which for me is important as I have had no joy with editorial submissions to date! This was a particularly difficult photograph to capture but it was the reason I had got up early, to try and get a nice sunrise sky behind the Heroes square monument. I am not massively experienced at tone mapping and creating HDR images and am certainly not a fan of the overcooked look but in some instances there really is no other way to get the image you want. Trying to use a GND filter for this picture would have been hell in post processing with so many verticle lines to deal with but was really happy to see it and its compatriot portrait image accepted. Made the stupidly early start worthwhile for me :D

New toy

And finally my new toy, I found a great deal on a B+W110 10 stop filter on the internet and jumped at the opportunity to get a filter that would enable me to get some really long exposure times during the day. I have seen lots of great examples taken with these filters but on this particular trip wanted to use it to get rid of people whilst shooting during the day. When you are taking a 60-90 second exposure people and vehicles largely disappear or turn into pleasing whispy ghosts. I still need lots of practice and probably an upgrade to my tripod but I loved the results and even notorious heavy colour cast from the filter was a simple to fix in photoshop :) Hundreds of people were milling around when this photograph was taken including several that walked right through the shot and one who even stood in shot to take a photograph, but as if by magic they are all gone :D

And in this image it even got rid of a host of boats that chugged through the picture and calmed the usually rather rough river Danube.

Next city to play in is Debrecen for a morning in a couple of weeks time which should be cool but until then I have a new light tent to play with :)

Photo credits: Llareggub.

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September 28, 2011


Thank you both, it was a real revelation getting out in the City so early. It has a completely different feel and look to later on in the day when there ae thousands of people around!

September 27, 2011


"Stupid o'clock" - I can relate! Well observed.
Great description and beautiful pics :)

September 27, 2011


The big efforts - good result. Thanks for walk across Budapest.

September 23, 2011


Thanks Afagundes, a new tripod will definately be reuired at some point in time foe stability but outdoor shooting in winter here is not advisable as it is soooo damn cold so that will probably be a purchase for nest spring...

I now have my eyes on a faster lens to use indoors :D

September 23, 2011


Hi, very nice pictures, I love night pictures, I would suggest your next investment should be a nice fiber tripod (if you don't have one), your back will thank you... and you will have more energy to wonder around at night.

September 23, 2011


Thank you all for the kind words :D

September 22, 2011


Great images! I hope one day visit Budapest!

September 22, 2011


Your images are great, thanks for sharing.

September 22, 2011


Beautiful photos and beautiful colors!

September 22, 2011


Beautiful pictures, nicely done :-)


September 22, 2011


Budapest is a wonderful city! Congratulations for your pics and for your new toy!!! :)

September 22, 2011


Beautiful photos!

September 22, 2011


Thanks, cities are all very nóoisy and smell but nice to visit for an evning but usually cannot wait to get back to the countryside :)

September 22, 2011


nice shots! I have been to Budapest and as you said, its beautiful.

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