Riverside, CA – Mission Inn (HDR)

Mission Inn_Talke
From Riverside, CA…one of the most beautiful classic hotels….the Mission Inn Hotel & Spa. A hotel filled with old world charm. This was my first visit. A lovely place to see if you are in the area. The photo above is a fisheye of the amazing rotunda. Probably the most photographed location at the hotel.

Some history from the web: From its modest beginnings as a 12-room adobe boarding house to its current stature as one of the finest hotels in the United States providing a total of 238 rooms and suites, The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa has been the cornerstone of Downtown Riverside since 1876.

By the 1890’s, Riverside was the richest city per capita in the United States. The consistent influx of tourists to Riverside made Frank Miller, the Master of the Inn, recognize the dire need for a grand resort hotel. And so, the evolution of The Mission Inn began. Frank Miller opened the first wing of his new hotel in 1903. The Mission Wing was built in Mission-Revival style architecture and incorporated different structural elements of the 21 California Missions. Mr. Miller went onto add three more wings to his hotel: the Cloister, the Spanish, and finally completed it with the Rotunda wing in 1931.

Peter Talke Photography Settings:

Camera: Nikon D300
Lens: Nikon 10.5mm Fisheye
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 10.5 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 7 Exposures (+3 to -3)
Aperture: f/8
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS6, HDR Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Porto, Portugal – Pestana Porto Hotel (HDR)

Pestana Hotel Porto Portugal
Porto, Portugal is a stunning old city. I am lucky enough to visit every couple years. My favorite hotel to stay at is the Pestana Porto Hotel. Some info from their website: Pestana Porto is one of the best hotels in Oporto, located in Praça da Ribeira in the heart of the historic core of Oporto, and standing on the city’s medieval walls, with a magnificent view of the river Douro.

This hotel in Oporto occupies part of a block of 16th, 17th and 18th century building, and has been classified World Heritage by Unesco. Its privileged location makes it possible to cruise down the river Douro, departing from the bank right in front of the hotel, and to take the historic tram to Foz do Douro or visit one of the Port wine cellars.

The shot above has a bit of a grunge look…I use onOne Software Photo Tools 2.6 to get this effect. My favorite setting is “Brian’s TKO”. Click and you get an instant grunge shot!

onOne recently released Perfect Photo Suite 7!!! I have been playing around with it and love it! I will write a review soon!! Get your copy today!!!

Perfect Photo Suite 7

Houston, Texas – Hilton Hotel (HDR)

Houston, TX Hilton Hotel
Not often do you get multiple HDR’s from a hotel stay! I have posted quite a few pics from this visit. If you had read my previous posts. It was an early 4:30 AM wake up to snag these HDR’s. It was me and the cleaners walking around the hotel lobby. Kudos Houston Hilton….not only a nice hotel, but also great for photographers!!

Peter Talke Photography Settings:
Camera: Nikon D300
Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4.0
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 12.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 7 Exposures (+3 to -3)
Aperture: f/7.1
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS6, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Miami, Florida – Breakwater Hotel (HDR)


From South Beach in Miami where you can find some sweet hotels lit up at nite along the strip. This is Breakwater Hotel. Looks broken down on this day. Doors might have been closed for renovations…but lights still work!! I checked out their site…all remodeled and they state it is the sexiest hotel in South Beach! Looks nice! $209/nite for a November stay. Time to hit Miami!!

Peter Talke Photography Settings:

Camera: Nikon D300
Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 24.0mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 7 exposures (+3 to -3)
Aperture: f/11
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS6, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Photo Tools 2.6

Mineral Wells, Texas – Baker Hotel (HDR-Infrared)


One more shot from the photo walk. I was using my converted Infrared Nikon D70S after my D300’s mirror locked up. I took all shots as IR-HDR’s. In the back of the hotel there is a small cul-de-sac with a rear entrance. I can assume this was for the rich and famous to enter in the hotel without interruption. When you look upwards, there is this large pipe that extends up the wall of the hotel. Very different and cool! Not sure what its purpose is? A big fireplace inside? One day, I would love to go inside and take tons of HDR’s!

Talke Photography Settings:
Infrared Converted Nikon D70S
Lens: Nikon 12-14 f/4.0
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 24.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 3 Exposures (+2 to -2)
Aperture: f/11
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS5, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Mineral Wells, TX – Baker Hotel (HDR)


On Saturday/Sunday Scott Kelby held his annual Worldwide Photo Walk. I decided to take the drive up North to Mineral Wells, TX. The group leader Maureen set it up at the Baker Hotel! This was on my “Must Visit” lists for Texas! Maureen had received approval for us to photograph the grounds. We could not go inside as the interior is falling apart and very dangerous. We arrived at 8 AM and were able to shoot until 9:30 AM on the grounds. Our turnout was wonderful. We all had a great time. It is always so nice to meet all the walkers and sometimes you get to say hello to acquaintances! It makes the walk that much more enjoyable!

My sad story was that as soon as we arrived on grounds, my D300 mirror locked up and would not release! Ugh! I did get a few HDR’s beforehand, but none up close to the hotel, due to my camera issues. Oh well…luckily I had my converted Infrared camera and I also brought along my Canon Film Camera! I was able to continue the walk! I grabbed quite a few IR shots…film shots will come later!

It is such a cool location…but watched very closely by the law. I would suggest if you ever plan to visit, please get the proper approval. I’d like to try and see if I can go back during a dreary winter day! It would be spooky and awesome!! I’ll post a few shots this week. Enjoy!

Talke Photography Settings:
Lens: Nikon 12-14 f/4.0
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 812.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 7 Exposures (+3 to -3)
Aperture: f/11
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS5, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

Las Vegas, Nevada – Bellagio

Vegas at nite…what a visit to this little city is all about.  My favorite hotel to stay at is the Bellagio.  We were heading in for the nite and I grabbed this shot.   I know Photoshop World just finished in Orlando…but the next one is September 7-9 in Vegas.  I have always wanted to attend…maybe this year?  Hope my schedule opens up!

Talke Photography Settings:

  • Camera:  Nikon D70S
  • Lens: Nikon 18-200 f/3.5-5.6
  • Setting: Aperture Mode
  • Focal Length: 36.0 mm
  • ISO: 200
  • Exposure:  0.5 seconds
  • Aperture:  f/4.5
  • Gear:  Tripod
  • Post Process: Adobe CS5, Color Efex Pro,   Photo Tools 2.6