Photography by J.D. Magers

Waiting for the Bus

Added on by J.D. Magers.

October 3 was the 8th Annual Scott Kelby Photowalk.  I love doing this event even though for some reason it always seems to conflict with something else I have going on.  I've only made three of the eight, but it seems like I have known about the walk since the beginning.  Anyway, this year's walk was organized to take place in the early evening along the 16th Street Mall in downtown Denver.  To be honest, I waffled a bit before signing up because I wasn't sure if I wanted to go downtown.  I asked a coworker if he wanted to go with me, and when he said he would, I signed up too.  One of over 21,000 people to participate on the day!

Unedited (but cropped apparently) version of a woman waiting for the bus in downtown Denver during the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk.

Unedited (but cropped apparently) version of a woman waiting for the bus in downtown Denver during the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk.

Unfortunately, the weather that we had that day was really crappy and overcast.  Not good for walking around in the early evening.  Of course I should've taken the tripod, but it's old and crappy and I want a new one, and I just didn't bother.  Once the sun set behind the clouds, I had to put my camera in Auto ISO mode and started shooting at ISO 12800.  Boy are those photos noisy.  Anyway, before I lost the light completely, I spotted this bright orange color across the street.  I know street compositions like this are pretty commonly chosen as winners during the contest phase of the photowalk, and I have been wanting to make more images like this so I took the opportunity to make the photograph.  You can actually see me in the window behind her.  

So let's look at how I processed this image.  After importing into Lightroom, the first think I did was do a lens correction and straighten the image.  I figured the crack in the cement in front of her was probably a straight line, so I drew my level indicator line over that.  After adjusting the point curve to Medium Contrast, I adjusted the saturation levels of her orange sari, and her green pants just to see how that would make the photo look.  What I noticed was that when I increased the reds, it made the light in the shops in the background appear warmer.  This started to make the shot look really nice, so I went with it.  Some more global adjustments were made in Clarity, Vibrance, Saturation and the red channel Hue and I had close to my final image.  I warmed it up just a little bit more with the temperature slider, and added a medium vignette from Matt Kloskowski to complete the frame.

A completed street image from the 8th Annual Scott Kelby Photowalk in Denver, Colorado.

A completed street image from the 8th Annual Scott Kelby Photowalk in Denver, Colorado.

Ultimately, I decided to submit another image to the photowalk contest.  I haven't heard if I won or not.  It doesn't matter, as I was just happy to get out.  I'll post more images too in the coming days.  These photowalks are really fun, but it kind of surprises me that there aren't more organized in the Denver area.  There isn't one in Boulder for example.  Pearl Street would be an awesome photowalk.  I decided while working on these images that next year I am going to lead a walk along Pearl.  I just need to find the route.  Hopefully you can join me.

I know the above processing steps are kind of hard to read.  I need to figure out how to do a screen capture on a Mac.  Perhaps a subject for another post.

Thank you for reading.  More later...