The Big Picture…

Lately I’ve been assigned to go out and create some fantastically large media in regards to upcoming promotions and internal marketing materials for the newspaper.  It all started when I got a request for a photo of the Indianapolis Skyline to send out of state to an Ad agency as part of an ad package that they bought with us for the remainder of the year.  Unfortunately the image that I had was from 2009, was only about 20 megapixels which they said wasn’t big enough….. I’m not sure what Big enough would have been, but oh well I decided to give it a shot.  As opposed to go out real late at dusk, I also went towards the middle of sunset in the hopes of picking up the Blue/Orange Color contrast between the setting sun on the buildings and the Sky, which the agency really seemed to like actually.

(Canon 1D Mark IIN, Canon 24-70@65mm, 10 images stitched together using AutoPano Pro)

That’s not the full size image, not by a long shot but it’s an indicator of the photo we had on file.  I have no idea what on earth they could have wanted a larger one for, but I went out to create it; full steam ahead.  Unfortunately the perch that I used to create this shot a few years ago was blocked by a building that was being constructed, but the parking garage next door wasn’t.  The other big change is that the city has a new hotel to the west, which is the JW Marriott.  The JW Didn’t exist in 2009 as anything other than the cranes on the far right side of the image above when it was taken.  Really it was time for an update I suppose.  The only downside from this new spot is that the angle on the city was a little different, and what I considered to be not for the better.  Shot it with the 5D Mark II this time, at 22 megapixels my goal was to complete my assignment of making a very high resolution image for the Agency.  I’ve been shooting panoramic photos for years now, so I figured this would have been pretty simple right?…

(Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 70-200F2.8IS@115mm, 37 photos stitched together to make this,300ish megapixel image using AutoPanoGiga)

Yes, if you read the descriptions of these photos you’ll notice that one says that it’s 300 megapixels.  The image started out in AutoPano Giga as 979 megapixels, but There was a lot of sky and grass that I didn’t feel was necessary to the image’s success.  The final image ended up being 457 megapixels, but it turns out that Photoshop can’t read Jpegs larger than 30,000 pixels in any one dimension.  Also, the image started to degrade at past 300 megapixels when viewed at 100% because I didn’t use a tripod; This was shot hand held.  this image below is a 100% Crop of the image above to give you an idea the level of detail in this 16 gigabyte file.  Shot it at 115mm to flatten out the buildings a little bit, but I’m still not happy with the fact that my field of view on the city changed to block the separation in the buildings.  There appears to be some discoloration in the sky as well, but at even at 50% that seems to disappear, leaving me unsure as to what is going on with it.

(100% crop of the 300 megapixel image above)

How’s that for some big picture action?  Not sure if it’s the largest image I’ve ever created or not.  Like I said, the image started out as 979 megapixels which is wildy astronomically huge.  Unfortunately the computer I’m on doesn’t have the resources to open up the 450mp version either so give you a better idea of what the file looks like at full, full size.  As I was back a few years ago I’m still excited to continue to play with this technology.  The quest for an exceptionally large image is still on for me…

(Nikon D3s, Nikon 24mm PC-E, 10 images stitched together using AutoPanoGiga)

Created that image of Lucas Oil that same week.  It’s by no means as large as the one of the city, that’s sort of an extreme example, but this image is large enough to be printed several feet across at least.  Shannon was with me when I took this right before dinner, we both loved the sky that night.  Stood on top of the car to get this (something I like to avoid as I have a relatively large sunroof on my Subaru).  Think it was worth it.  I like the City Silhouetted in the background, but I think the crowd has mixed feelings about it.  If you’ve got any particular thoughts about it, leave em in the comments would ya?  Have a few different versions of it.  Otherwise, more soon.