Location:Kurilpa Bridge, Brisbane
General location: Australia, South-East Queensland
The Setup:As part of the Brisbane Festival, every night there has been a light show over the Brisbane River.
I had a spot in mind to photograph this from at Southbank, but missed my train and got there late. Southbank was packed with people, and in the end it didn't matter as my lens was not wide enough. Luckily they have two showings per night, so I hung around (and had a picnic with Evelyn), and set myself up on the Kurilpa Bridge for the second run.
I was set up with the tripod and cable release. For the first show, I was doing my test shots while the show was on! For the second show, I had time to test the light and see that between 60 and 120 seconds was a good exposure. With the magic of raw + Lightroom, and knowing that I didn't necessarily need to keep the colours true, I had great leverage with the exposure.
The camera & lens:Camera: Canon EOS 400D DIGITAL
Lens: Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II @ 18mm
Exposure: 91" @ f/11, ISO 100 (M, bulb mode with cable release and tripod)
Lightroom - I used a curves adjustment that brightened the beams of light (lights +45, darks +35, shadows -15). I also set recovery +100, fill light +70 (to lighten everything) and blacks +100 (to bring it all back to earth). I did some spot removal (healing) to get rid of some stars and aircraft (the only one remaining was too big to get rid of with Lightroom's simple tools). Final adjustment was noise reduction +45.