Just off Yonge St, south, west of King, you can find Commerce Court. Linger there, on a nice day and enjoy the sunshine and relative quiet in the downtown area. If it’s a bright day, you’ll be treated to one of the best special effects shows in town. Wander around the courtyard and look up – you’ll see a variety of visual effects going on. Commerce Court is surrounded by shiney, reflective skyscrappers that offer up a variety of shots to capture. One of my favourite effects is the mirrored buildings:
It’s an impressive rippled mirror effect. Like a living mural, constantly changing with the sun. Don’t forget to look a little lower. Buildings to the north create a neat white patterned effect on the shorter concrete buildings. Enjoy.
I keep some photos in reserve to experiment with. These’ll be toss away shots that aren’t particularly … anything. Not good, not really bad, just mediocre and not worth posting. I hang onto them to test and push the limits of my imagination. It’s incredibly easy to go overboard with filters and such, so I have to reign myself in quite a bit. You never get to see the really absurd edits. One spot I have a lot of trouble getting a clean shot is the Cathedral – also known as the Hockey Hall of Fame building at 30 Yonge Street Brookfield Place. The main floor of Brookfield is quite awe inspiring but a bugger on wheels to get a good photo. Even if you stand right in the middle, you end up with a weird optical illusion. Nothing ever looks quite straight. But it’s fun to play with.
I took a photo with my Acer Liquid to see if there would be any improvement and nope… still mediocre. So I spent a day or two poking it with a big stick to see what could be done with it. The original is blah. The filtered version is over the top but I have to admit, I love it. I used NIK’s Silver Efex Pro 2 filter. The Vintage -> Film Noir 1 filter worked effectively in changing the mood. I tinkered with the various settings, but the ability to throw on a paper style made the photo. The Fuji Neopan Pro 1600 paper option increased the contrast and grain enough to suit my melodramatic tastes.
If you hover your mouse over the image or tap it if you’re on a touch screen, you can see the original shot and understand what I mean about “blah”. Too much light filters through the ceiling, washing out the architecture. I’ll have to nip down there the next raining day to see if it makes a difference.