November 20, 2009

the far-out deYoung Museum

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

The skin of the deYoung Museum in San Francisco looks like a giant half-tone screen, like a printer doing photo-lithography would use.

It's just odd-ball enough to have enraged a lot of people years ago when the design of the building was going through the review and approval process.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Combine an angular building with some colorful leaves and you've got something rather arty, I think...

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

The oddest thing about the deYoung is that the odd nine story tower is filled with offices and not a whole lot of art, but they probably do have the world's fastest elevator.   A bookstore, t-shirt and coffee-mug store, and a grand view of the City awaits.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Well, I should go back and re-Photoshop this image.   I inadvertently squashed the sphere while skewing the right side of the photo.

And this photo has more faults than just a squashed sphere -- it has the dreaded blown-out whites.   The sunlight on that concrete ball was glaring, but it's the job of the photographer to get some detail into the high-values and not just let them go blank.

Had I checked the Histogram I would have seen what was coming, but actually there's not too much any Photoshopper can do to rescue an image blown-out this badly.   I could fiddle with the Curve, or go heavy on the Recovery slider in CameraRAW, but probably the best thing is to go back and re-shoot the scene on an overcast day.

Continuing your Histogram lesson:   Notice how on the left-side of the scale the image values don't reach all the way to the left-edge.   This shows there are no pure blacks in the image, which is o.k. for an image like this.   Had I wanted some rich blacks I would just slide that little triangle over to the right, and in so doing I would be fitting the Scene Brightness Range to the 256 brightness steps in Photoshop.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

I can't help seeing a giant aircraft or spaceship in this image.
Ready for take-off.   Please put your tray tables up!...

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Rhett Redelings said...

Personally, I love the new De Young museum. My wife and I have a membership and we call it the "Jawa Transport". "What are you two doing on Sunday?" "Oh, we're going to the Jawa Transport. Wanna come?"

As to the highlights, I actually don't mind them in the image as you've posted it. Of course, I like a good deal of unreality in my photography but I think the highlights around the outside curve of the sphere actually work. I don't know if what you posted is your recovered photo or the original, so maybe I'm just complimenting you on your post processing skills?

Louise said...

Outraged? People are so strange sometimes. I like the ultra modern look. And the view from the inside? Wow!

I see that if I ever get Photoshop, I'll have to take a class on how to use it.

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