Any photo hit-list for Montreal is incomplete without the lavishly decorated Notre Dame Basilica. Still a fully functioning Catholic cathedral, I have one important piece of advice for successfully photographing the gorgeous interior of this place: DON”T GO DURING SUNDAY MORNING MASS! Lori, our friend Natalie, and I thought it was our lucky day when there was no attendant at the entrance counter. As I tromped in, I recall exclaiming something enthusiastic like, “Boardwalk and Park Place guys! This usually costs like 5 buc- Wow, wait. I think they’re praying.” As silently as possible, the two ladies helped me collect my shattered dignity from the beautifully tiled floor, and we regrouped at a nearby cafe.
Since I obviously did not take pictures during the service, we returned once mass had ended, paid our $5 and shot until early afternoon. Aside from the multifaceted main sanctuary, there’s also a little known private chapel with some stellar spiral staircases in the back right corner which was equally delightful to photograph.
- 9 bracketed NEF files imported to Adobe Lightroom 3 and converted to DNG
- Lens corrections and manual chromatic abberation correction in LR3
- Tone Mapped in Photomatix 4
- Tone mapped image blended with original source images
- Edited and polished in Photoshop CS5
- Final HDR photo re-imported to LR3 for sharpening and adding a slight vignette (once I move to PS, I usually stay there… I’m not sure what my logic was for re-importing to Lightroom… but that’s how it went down)
(Slide the slider to compare the before/after shots. Best viewed in Firefox. The “Before” photo is the middle exposure from the bracketed source images used in tone mapping.)