A fire alarm practice is always a fun event for the entire family. This gave me the rare opportunity aka forced me to use the otherwise obviously locked fire exit and opened up a whole different vista, with the addition of all the people converging towards the gathering point (I wish I would have already had a tilt/shift lens …).
On nice days like today the sun shines extremly bright in Madrid, there are no clouds around and heavy shadows are being cast between our twin buildings for most of the day.
This is where RAW + Lightroom 3 feel at home even more. On the right you see the original shot exposed to match the bright part of the picture since you always want to bring back the dark parts, the bright parts can not be recovered most of the time, they simply don’t contain much or any information as opposed to the darker areas which can yield up to a couple of stops depending on the situation and camera model you are using.
I used two gradiaton filters, one coming from the right to cover the building and one coming from down below up to the pond. Brightness in the upper area has been reduced with the recovery sliders (toning down the highlights a bit) and there is some fill light in it as well. White balance was completely off due to the variations in the scene. After that it was the usual routine of adding contrast, clarity and some more color.
A minor noise filter tweak has also been applied since the limits got pushed a bit here and I didn’t feel like retaining the maximum quality was necessary for this kind of shot. A fun fact of the 18MP sensor is that by accidentally zooming in I spotted 2 colleagues looking at me directly which you can see here.