Featured Prague - capital full of history and beauty

Discussion in 'Scenic, Architecture, and Travel' started by jrsilva, Mar 28, 2018.

  1. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012

    As some fellow forum users here know, I mostly shoot portraiture (about 90% of my photography), but this time I want to share something different for a change.
    A few weeks ago I had the luck of travel to Prague in Czech Republic.
    It is a beautiful capital in the heart of old Europe.
    There are magnificent buildings, statues, churches at every corner, and everything is so well preserved and cared that they look like they were built yesterday.

    In my Crumpler messenger bag I took the following micro 4/3 gear:

    Olympus OMD EM10 Mark II
    3 batteries
    3 SD cards
    Pana/Leica 25mm f/1.4
    Olympus 14-42mm EZ
    Olympus 9-18mm
    Panasonic 35-100 f/2.8

    Most of the photos were taken with the Oly 9-18 and Panasonic 35-100.
    The Pana/Leica 25mm was used briefly in a few night shoots and I barely used the Olympus 14-42 EZ.
    In several occasions I wished I had a wider than the 9mm lens. There was so many things to put inside the frame...

    It was very cold most of the time, but in my 5 day visit I've the luck to get 2 overcast and hazy days, 2 sunny days and a snowy day.
    I hope these photos inspire you to visit this beautiful city.

    This is Part One:




















    Last edited: Apr 8, 2018
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  2. Thai-Mike

    Thai-Mike Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 2, 2016
    Great images
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  3. retiredfromlife

    retiredfromlife Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    Went there over 20 years ago, and would love to go back again one day.
    Great place and not too expensive
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  4. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    ... and this is Part Two:
















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  5. Very nice sets, I put Prague on my bucket list.
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  6. retiredfromlife

    retiredfromlife Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    Those interior shorts look very clean and crisp. What settings did you use? Hand held or tripod.
    I seem to remember a lot of building were very dark inside when I was there and tripods were not allowed inside a lot of buildings as they were very crowded.
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  7. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Yes, most of the buildings were very dark inside.
    I did not used a tripod.
    All the photos were done had held.
    Tripods and flash are not allowed. In some of the buildings you even have to pay a fee to be allowed to take pictures with a camera (there was an old library I've visited were even to take pictures with a cellphone you need to pay a fee).
    I had to crank up the ISO and rely on the IBIS of the EM10 II (who did a good job by the way). Several interior shoots were shoot with ISO setting between 1000 and 3200. Also the night shoots were shoot using high ISO settings (you can see a fairly amount of noise in those pictures I've posted that I decided not to clean completely to preserve the details).
    In interior shoots I have set the camera to Aperture Priority and Auto ISO (with ISO 3200 maximum limit).
    In post processing I have reduced the noise a bit and recovered the details in the shadows with a semi-HDR retouch.
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  8. You might also be able to align and median/mean stack a sequence of multiple shorter exposures together in PP to reduce high ISO noise. Tony Northrup made a video on how to do this.
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  9. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Thank's for pointing me that. :thumbup:
    Is this the video?

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  10. absolutic

    absolutic Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 21, 2011
    I went there 20 years ago too and it was cheap. But that was then, before they had Euro. I used film camera then :) 
  11. retiredfromlife

    retiredfromlife Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    Same here, I was using a Minolta SRT 101b from memory.
    Shame if Euro made it more expensive
  12. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    The official currency is actually the Czech Crown.
    I believe there could be some places there that accept Euros because the ATM machines have the option to deliver Czech Crowns or Euros but when I went in Prague I've always pay everything in Czech Crowns.
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  13. Zee

    Zee Mu-43 Top Veteran


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  14. NigelD

    NigelD Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 23, 2015
    I went last year and loved the place. I need to go back for a second visit, purely for photography.
  15. @jrsilva@jrsilva Jaime... wonderful selection of photos and certainly a set that will inspire many to visit Prague. I thought Budapest was a beautiful city (2014 visit) but some of the travellers we met on that journey told us that Prague was even more awe inspiring. Now that I've seen your photos I absolutely believe them!
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  16. Love the treatment on this and several other shots you've shared with us. I can't pin it down but it has a certain film look and feel. What did you do in post (preset, settings) that resulted in this look? I know in EX3 there are quite a number of film emulsion presets that I like tinkering with but I felt whatever you did with these shots really suited the scene.
    Well done!:thumbup:
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  17. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    Thank you for your kind words.
    Well, I've edited the photos on Lightroom and a few of them were then opened in Photoshop for some correction that I find easier to do in Photoshop (like clone out wires or tree branches in a corner of a photo).

    I have a bunch of Lightroom presets I've found on the net or that were gave to me, but usually I tweak then a lot. Sometimes I use them just as a starting point and then I re-adjust the settings I don't like.
    There are some Lightroom adjustments (or Camera Raw adjustments, when using Photoshop to edit from the start) that I always tweak to my taste more or less the same way (like shadow or detail recover, sharpness and color temperature. I try to avoid bluish toning and try to give a warmer mood to the photos.
    I've used one or two free Lightroom presets as a starting point. Can't recall the name of the site from the top of my head but I will take a look when I get home and talk back.
    They were mainly shadow detail and color enhancement presets.

    Sometimes I also make use of the old Nik plugins (now is a freeware from Google), more specifically the "Vivacity" one.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
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  18. number17

    number17 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 19, 2011
    Wonderful photos Jaime!

    I'm actually going to Prague (and BUdapest + Vienna) in September this year ... so very looking forward to the trip already after seeing your pics.

    Surprised you took most photo with the zoom lenses ... I remember last time I went to Spain / Portugal I brought with me :

    Olympus 14-150mm
    Panny Leica 25mm f1.4
    Panny 20mm f1.7
    Panasonic 14mm with wide angle kit to turn it into 11mm

    And I left my 14-150mm in the hotel after 2 days cause my camera bag was too heavy, and I was taking most of the pictures with the 25mm outdoor, 14mm indoor ... the zoom lens was versatile but i find that I want the picture quality (and shallow depth of field) of the prime lens so that became my go-to lenses. Every day I'd take maybe 1 or 2 tele-photos with the zoom lens it wasn't worth it in my case.
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  19. jrsilva

    jrsilva Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 1, 2012
    In fact I'm not a zoom guy, but in Prague having a wide or super-wide angle lens is crucial.
    The wider prime lens I have is the Olympus 17mm and it is not enough wide to photograph inside churches and palaces.
    So, I put my Olympus 9-18mm to use.
    There are plenty of details on the buildings (outside and inside) that I wanted to capture, so my Panasonic 35-100 f/2.8 was also used several times.
  20. Gerard

    Gerard Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 12, 2015
    Vleuten, Utrecht
    You can start a masterclass! :) 
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