This is one of two last churches that I visited on my way out of Prague. The fisheye effect is not immediately visible because I took the image straight up into the center of the ceiling. I couldn’t exactly remember the church, but using Google Maps and Wikipedia, I found out it was the Church of Saint Giles.
OK, I admit I’m stupid. It’s not ebooks, it’s apps. I have just checked the websites of two of the most important museums in Europe, the Louvre in Paris and the Prado in Madrid, and both of them offer apps.
For our own “Kunsthistorisches Museum” in Vienna, a museum also in the top league, I found an app with “Stories”, but nothing complete. There is an ebook guide from the series “Rick Steves Tour” for €1.99 at Amazon though. At 30 pages it’s not comprehensive at all, but it has floor plans, some images of the most prominent works, and it might be enough to help along one’s memory a few months later.
Prague does not seem to have anything like that yet. That’s unfortunate, but I think in general we’re going in the right direction.
The others I don’t know. I could have documented them by taking images of the labels, but that would have taken me out of “Seeing Mode”. I don’t do that any more. I also used to buy museum catalogs. The problem is, that they are heavy and I don’t want to haul them around. As always, the solution would be an ebook. Hmm … actually I didn’t even ask. Maybe I should have? How else would they know there is demand?
Over the centuries the varnish of paintings tends to get yellow, even brownish. The effect is very similar to a color temperature that’s set too high. It turns out that you can very effectively remove the color cast of paintings in Lightroom. Of course I can’t be sure that this is how the paintings were originally intended, but normally the results look extremely balanced.
The National Gallery in Prague is spread over a a few buildings, one or two down in the center, the rest up in front of the castle.
One of today’s images is of course a Rembrand, the other – I don’t know. I like it though. It’s a beautiful rural scene with an abundance of details.
I hate those long-perspective shots in crowded places. You have to wait one or two eternities until the view is clear, and when you have finally verified your composition, someone walks in from the side again.
In this case I’ve accepted the half-hidden person at the far side. And the crouching child wearing an aggressively yellow coat? Cloned out, what else 😀
These images were taken with a relatively cheap, manual focus Walimex lens – or Samyang or Rokinion, depending on where you buy it.
I bought it when it was available for 30% off on Amazon. Normally I would probably have bought the expensive and super-stellar Olympus 8/1.8 for between two and three times the price. Would it have been worth it? Probably not. This lens has plenty of sharpness, and most of the time focusing is not necessary at all. The Olympus would have given me some extra greatness, bought with extra size and extra weight.
As it is, the fisheye is always in my “Big Travel Bag”, along with the three PRO lenses. I don’t have to remember packing it, it’s just available when I need it and that’s surprisingly quite often. Had I bought the Olympus, I would have been forced to buy a bigger bag (NO WAY!!!) or alternatively I would have been forced to choose between the 7-14 and the fish. You see, better sometimes can be much worse 🙂
There is a museum in the upper story of the cloister. That’s where the stairs lead to.
Not so here. The distortions give me an effect that strongly reminds me of Dali’s molten realities.
Ok, I’ve played around a bit with DxO and Lightroom. For your reference, here is yesterday’s image again.
If we ignore the different colors and looks, what remains is an effect that I find quite pleasing. Yes, we lose a little bit on the sides and at the top, but the result does indeed look much more natural.
Is it worth it using the fisheye along with DxO and some extra treatment in Lightroom over, say, the rectilinear 7-14/2.8? Well, probably not, but then, if we see it as just one more tool in our set, I think there’s nothing wrong with it. And yes, of course all those software tricks cost you some ultimate sharpness, but so do in-camera corrections. Do I care? Nope. Not at all.