Pittsburgh, PA – Cathedral of Learning (HDR)


One of my favorite cities to photograph due to my love of its sports teams…Pittsburgh. This day I went out with my good friend and fellow photographer, Dave DiCello. You can find his blog here.. HDR Exposed . He has tons of great shots of the Burgh!

I told my wife one day we have to live here for year so I can go to all the games..Steelers, Pirates and Penguins! ..probably when I am retired. The Photogs in the Burgh have tons of places to shoot…the city, sports parks, bridges all over the place, steel mills, old and abandoned buildings all over! HDR heaven!

One super cool place you must stop by to HDR first if you ever visit is the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning. It is the perfect spot to HDR! Dave and I went early this day before classes started and it was nice and quiet! The kids probably had too many Iron City Beer’s the night before! Enjoy the photo!

If you are a photog and shoot HDR’s my HDR techniques have been evolving recently and I have a few new tricks. The shot above and a few recently have utilized these new methods. I still use Nik’s HDR Efex Pro…but its what I do in Photoshop that helps! I’ll do a post on this soon! Have fun!

Talke Photography Settings:

Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4.0
Setting: Aperture Mode
Focal Length: 12.0 mm
ISO: 200
Exposure: HDR 5 Exposures (+2 to -2)
Aperture: f/16
Gear: Tripod
Post Process: Adobe CS5, HDR Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, OnOne Software Photo Tools 2.6

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Pittsburgh, PA – Cathedral of Learning (HDR)

Located at the University of Pittsburgh…the Cathedral of Learning is not only a great subject inside (as you have seen per my previous posts)…the outside is excellent as well!  Standing tall…it is one beautiful structure located in the midst of the campus.  If you are ever in Pittsburgh…stop by..you will not regret it!  Good luck Panthers!!

Talke Photography Settings:

  • Camera:  Nikon D300
  • Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4
  • Setting: Aperture  Mode
  • Focal Length: 15.0mm
  • ISO: 200
  • Exposure:  HDR 5 exposures (+2 to -2)
  • Aperture:  f/22
  • Gear:  Tripod
  • Post Process: Adobe CS4, Photomatix, Viveza
  • Pittsburgh, PA – Cathedral of Learning (HDR)

    One more shot from the Cathedral of Learning in Pittsburgh.  This place is meant for HDR!!  People posted on the previous shots that it looks like something from Lord of the Rings or even Hogwarts from Harry Potter.   I’ll go with Hogwarts as my choice!   I can see Dumbledore teaching in Pittsburgh!   I enjoy the Harry Potter movies..so while checking out if Hogwarts was design upon any particular building (no luck)…I stumbled across the grading system at Hogwarts…too funny!!

    Most O.W.L.s  (Ordinary Wizzarding Level)consist of two parts, a written theoretical test and a practical demonstration of skills before the examiners. Subjects are graded on the following scale:

    Passing Grades

    • O = Outstanding
    • E = Exceeds Expectations
    • A = Acceptable

    Failing Grades

    • P = Poor
    • D = Dreadful
    • T = Troll

    Great stuff…ah writers!!  Imagine getting a “T”  = Troll grade…funny!!   Ok, have a magical day!

    Talke Photography Settings:

  • Camera:  Nikon D300
  • Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4
  • Setting: Aperture  Mode
  • Focal Length: 14.0mm
  • ISO: 200
  • Exposure:  HDR 5 exposures (+2 to -2)
  • Aperture:  f/16
  • Gear:  Tripod
  • Post Process: Adobe CS4, Photomatix, Viveza, Color Efex Pro
  • Pittsburgh, PA – Cathedral of Learning (HDR)

    This amazing building is the Cathedral of Learning located at the University of Pittsburgh.   It should be renamed the Cathedral of HDR!   You can catch great shots on the outside and inside!  This main hall is unreal!  I was just recently in Pittsburgh and went out shooting with my buddy Dave DiCello (HDR Exposed).  We grabbed quite a few shots  all over Pittsburgh.   I had been here last year, but felt I didn’t get the shots I really wanted.  Another reason why shooting the same location a few times is good idea!    You can get a different perspective and possible new camera angles.  Push your photography limits.

    Whomever designed this place…kudos!   Very church-like and beautiful!!   Gotta love those pillars and ceiling.  This shot was up on the second floor overlooking the hall.  The wide angles captures the view nicely!   This basically was the only area we shot.  I wonder if any magical rooms for HDR’ing are located above?   Maybe one day I will find out!

    Talke Photography Settings:

  • Camera:  Nikon D300
  • Lens: Nikon 12-24 f/4
  • Setting: Aperture  Mode
  • Focal Length: 19.0mm
  • ISO: 200
  • Exposure:  HDR 5 exposures (+2 to -2)
  • Aperture:  f/16
  • Gear:  Tripod
  • Post Process: Adobe CS4, Photomatix, Viveza, Color Efex Pro