Crossing (Color)

Chesapeake & Ohio (C&O) Canal, Georgetown, Washington, DC, looking north toward pedestrian bridges between business buildingsChesapeake and Ohio (C&O) Canal, Georgetown, Washington, DC

Georgetown is filled with wonderful photographic spots, and on this day, I set my sights on the peaceful C&O Canal. An occasional jogger ran down the path, a few pedestrians meandered on a lunch-time walk, while others crossed the bridges over the canals, many with bicycles. But the shot I wanted — someone crossing the foreground bridge — took some patience.

If anyone was to cross, I was expecting it to be on the lower level of the bridge. I was so surprised to see this woman crossing on the upper level that I missed the shot entirely. From then on, I had my camera focused and my shutter finger ready for what I hoped would be her return crossing. She did not disappoint!

The black and white version is posted on Monochromia. Which do you prefer?

(The184.5-mile Chesapeake and Ohio Canal operated from 1831 until 1924 along the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., to Cumberland, Maryland. The canal’s principal cargo was coal from the Allegheny Mountains. Rising and falling over an elevation change of 605 feet, it required the construction of 74 canal locks, 11 aqueducts to cross major streams, more than 240 culverts to cross smaller streams, and a 3,118-foot tunnel. The canal is now maintained as the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, with a trail that follows the old towpath. Credit: Wikipedia.)

51 thoughts on “Crossing (Color)

  1. I’m thinking that, again, surprisingly I prefer the B&W. The reflections are so intense and the image has more depth.
    I enjoyed reading your story of the shot, too.

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    • Thanks, Laurie. Seems the vote is split 50/50,mind which to my makes the image more interesting 🙂 And I did have a blast waiting for that shot – nothing better than when everything falls into place like that!

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  2. I like where the lines lead you in this picture. Colour and B&W make for different moods in a picture and I quite like both ….. although I have been thoroughly enjoying seeing your architectural series in B&W.

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  3. Very striking pictures, and very hard to decide on colour or B&W. I think if pushed, I would go for the colour version, I love the way the green by the side of the canal draws your eye up the the bridge area and the red of the wall and the green compliment each other perfectly. Beautiful shot Stacy and worth waiting for the nice lady to cross the bridge! 🙂

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    • Thanks, Katie, for sharing what you “see” in the images! It’s been educational (and fun too) to learn what others like about each of them. I think it’s pretty evenly split, which just goes to show how subjective photography is 😀

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  4. I’m actually hopeless at comparing the virtues between the two because each is more than good enough to stand on its own! The water with the stunning reflection and lush green at the sides immediately draws my eye whereas the B&W, for me, zeros straight in on the woman crossing the bridge. Such an interesting and fascinating exercise Stacy and both beautiful shots!

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    • Thanks, Patti! And thanks for your thoughts as well. I posted both because I couldn’t make up my mind, and it’s been a lot of fun to get everyone’s feedback. I think the B&W might have come out “ahead” by a nose, so pretty evenly split 😀

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  5. A beautiful shot Stacy! The woman on the bridge gives a wonderful human element to the scene. I prefer the color version, it gives nice mood and character to the photo. 🙂

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  6. I think I told you on the b&w that I preferred this color version. This has to have been shot with the Fuji, no? The clarity is amazing. And your processing? The colors are subdued, subtle, they don’t hit you over the head with the supersaturated colors that most photographers are using. I’ve been trying to go the subtle route with colors lately in my processing and you’ve nailed it. I’ve had the Fuji for 5 days now and just got to go out yesterday to take some real photos which I will hopefully post this week. But In my mind, the colors will be just as subtle. And the texture will stand out like yours does in the brick, and the light will shine as it does on the bushes. Love it! I’m not ignoring your processing, either.

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    • Emilio, I’m so excited you’ve rented a Fuji!!! 😀 Which one? And, yes, this was taken with the 100T. Oh, how I LOVE this powerhouse of a camera. That’s what I took to NYC last week, and I had more fun with this little beauty! I only had a chance to import a fraction of the pictures I took (I’ve been dealing with storage – or lack thereof – on my laptop the past few days), but I’m overjoyed. I can’t wait to hear about your experience and to see your images. And thanks for such kind words about this image. Yes, processing came into play, but I find myself doing less with my Fuji images 😀

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      • Getting deeper into the Fuji before I have to return it next week. A little disappointment last night, though. Probably too high of expectations. But I shot at ISO 6400 last night and the photos are pretty close to unusable due to noise. Was I expecting too much? It’s the X-T1

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        • Emilio, I have a couple of photos from my 100T shot at 6400, and while the noise is certainly there, Nik Dfine2 did a great job with cleanup and I was really pleased with the results. One thing I have read is that when shooting at high ISO, it’s really important to get your exposure pretty damn accurate. Since noise lives in shadows, the more underexposed it is, the more noise there is going to be when that’s compensated for. I’m not sure if that was an issue with any of your photos, but it makes good sense to me.

          Here’s a link to an article on how best to sharpen for Fuji’s sensor (http://petebridgwood.com/wp/2014/10/x-trans-sharpening/). I just came across it a couple of days ago but hadn’t had a chance to read it. It’s written specifically for the X-T1, but I played around a bit this morning and used it on my ISO 6400 shots and it worked well.

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        • I ran across Joe’s response to you today on one of his many blogs (don’t remember which one, or maybe it was your post on the XT-1?) so I think the issue has been ironed out? 6400 is definitely pretty high but doable in a pinch, especially with good noise-removal software. Hope you’re out shooting somewhere awesome on your last day with the T-1!

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        • We drove almost 200 miles yesterday on Route 66. Stopped at Hackberry, Truxton, Valentine, Peach Springs, and Seligman Arizona. Took us 6 hours due to all our stopping and taking photos. Less than 3 hours coming home last night. Today not feeling too good so taking it easy. Just working on the photos.

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        • Hope you’re feeling better today, Emilio. Sounds like a wonderful trip though. Nice way to spend weekend time – on road trips 🙂 It seems I’m falling into the pattern of loving the thrill of taking photos, but not feeling the love of post-processing them all right now. I just can’t seem to get caught up with anything and still have 3 SD cards full of photos from NYC that I haven’t yet put into my computer! I just don’t know where my days go …

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        • Mine go to working. My wife is wondering why I don’t get on the pc right away and start processing when we get home. I think I’m with you, it’s the journey, not the destination. I took only about 125 shots on our trip. And how many have I processed even though I was at home all day yesterday recuperating? One! Wanna see? I’ll send it to you privately. I will work more on it at some point and post it in a week or two! As for feeling better, thank you. I do.

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        • Wow, and here I thought it was just me, Emilio. Okay, I feel better now 🙂 And thanks for sending me the “private” preview – that was fun. Glad to hear you’re feeling better. Nothing worse in my book than a nauseated stomach!

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    • Hi, Sherry! Thanks for that feedback. I have to admit I still haven’t chosen my “favorite,” but it’s been really interesting to learn what others like better about each of them. FYI, I think the B&W has come out slightly ahead of the color 🙂

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  7. This was gorgeous! It reminded me of part of the canal in Richmond and makes me wonder if they used the same architect. I believe I took this with my little point and shoot and had a lot of fun removing the chromatic aberration that popped up when I straightened it out. At least, I think I did. It’s possible I did a jpg with the Rebel. For sure, raw wouldn’t have been so much work.

    Actually, after I dug it up and enlarged it on my blog, it’s not as similar as I thought. LOL. Have a good weekend!

    http://livingtheseasons.com/2011/10/30/anniversary-celebration-of-days/

    Nancy

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    • LOL, Nancy 😀 While you’re right, they’re not at all alike, they’re both lovely settings. Plus, it’s nice that this image evoked memories of “your” canal that you photographed on a special day. Thanks, as always, for commenting!

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  8. I’d have to go with the colour version. I like how the vibrant greens break up the darker grey and terracotta colours in the walls. It’s a real nice composition, but I think the black and white makes it a bit, texture overkill, and starts to overwhelm the whole picture. Great shot though, either way.

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    • Thanks, Duncan, and for your input as well. I personally have not been able to decide between the two as there are aspects of each that I really like, but it does seem that the B&W has come out a bit ahead of the color. It’s been interesting to read how others perceive the two versions.

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  9. What an interesting place. I love the brown brick building on the left with the lovely arch windows and the other side its uneven darker bricks. I like the contrast. the lady on the bridge is just another added slice of the pie 🙂

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    • Thanks, Kaz! I had a hard time deciding which I liked – I tended toward the color for the reason you stated, but when I processed it in B&W, I loved the mystery of it. A fun exercise to learn what others see in it. As for the lady, I like how you put your comment 🙂 I truly believe without her, the image would be pretty but not nearly as cool!

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  10. I’ve been back and forth a number of times looking at these. The light in the B&W is lovely. On the other hand, the color brings out some details you don’t see otherwise. Something about the stone and the water make the light very appealing, but…can’t decide! And usually I go for one or the other pretty fast.

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    • Thanks for your thoughts, Ben. Seems there are more who like the B&W, but you are not alone in voting for the color. That’s why I posted both – I couldn’t decide 🙂 As for the woman, I think she made the picture.

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