Our neighborhood has an annual mini- ‘Oktoberfest’ to celebrate it’s (waning) German heritage. As you can see, the band members are a bit ancient, but they are still going strong.
Yorkville used to have tons of Germans with beer gardens, and East 86th street used to be called German Broadway.
Unfortunately, the German influence in the area has nearly vanished with only a few remaining vestiges. One is Schaller & Weber German Delicatessen, whose banner you can see in the upper right of the first photo. The other is Heidelberg Restaurant which is pretty much next door to Schaller. Finally there is Zion-St. Mark’s Church (last photo) which still holds bilingual services in German and English.
The church used to be downtown in an area called Klein-Deutschland (Little Germany). Most of the German community ended up moving uptown to Yorkville after the church chartered a steamship (the General Slocum) that exploded and killed 1000 parishioners and children.
These kids weren’t too keen on the music. I thought it was good though
Here’s another of the Roosevelt Island Tram. I thought it’d be cool to put everything in the shot in black and white and just leave the tram a nice bright red. It looks nice right?
Normally, something like this calls for Photoshop, but believe it or not, it is actually not so hard to do in Lightroom.
This shot is of a Romeo and Juliet sculpture in Central Park near the Delecorte Theatre. The theatre shows free Shakespeare plays in the summer. I thought looked particularly nice in black and white.
The vignetting effect on this shot was done using the Post-Crop vignetting panel in lightroom. There are actually two areas that control vignetting in lightroom. The first is under Lens Corrections. This area is more designed to correct for natural vignetting that occurs from lens imperfections. This type of imperfection will of course only show on the corners of your shot, and will disappear if you crop off the corners. Therefore, if you crop your shot, these lens correction vignetting adjustments will not “travel” with your crop.
Because people started using vignetting as an artistic effect, Adobe added the Post-Crop Vignetting panel under Effects. Like the name says, the vignetting here will be maintained on any crop of your photo. There are various styles of vignetting that you can do here and you can experiment with them yourself.
Now you know, and knowing is half the battle.
Not too long ago (before 2008), in order to get this shot with an SLR, one had to look through the glass viewfinder. Now I don’t know about you, but I don’t enjoy looking directly at the sun, it’s not so good for your eyes.
If I’m shooting directly (or semi-directly) at the sun like this, I’ll try to use the LCD to compose my shot to avoid looking at the sun.
Another tip for these shots is that usually the sun will make the shot very hazy, but that is just the nature of the beast. In order to rectify this, I use high contrast and the blacks slider in Lightroom.
Here’s a view you don’t see often: the inside of the Met Life Building. I was able to get this view because of an NYC summer program called Summer Streets, where Park Avenue is open to only cyclists and pedestrians for 3 weekends each in the summer. One way to get great shots like this is be on the lookout for opportunities where you can access places that are normally off-limits.
The Vertical Lens Correction slider is one of my my favorite features in Adobe Lightroom. This sign I photographed from below because it was about 15 feet above me.
To correct perspective, I first straighten the image using the straighten tool in the Crop Overlay area (press “R” to get to it quickly). When that is done, I scroll all the way down the Develop module until I find the “Lens Corrections” panel. I then use the vertical slider until the image looks correct. It’s very quick to fix distortion this way.