Sunrise over Vltava

It was really long time since I was able to go out and shoot, having just photography in my head and being fully concentrated on this topic. Yesterday I decided to get up early and try to capture sunrise over Vltava. River flows right through the middle of Prague and quite a lot interesting places are situated on its banks.

First thing first, what to shoot and where. Picking the best location isn’t the easiest thing to do. When you have an interesting subject you need to decide where you gonna shoot it from and consider light, its quality, color, intensity, how it will work with your subject, what will be a part of composition and what you gonna remove. Of course, you can do some of these things in Photoshop afterwards. But by doing it in a camera you’ll save some time. I wanted to shoot a tight panorama of Prague which contains National Theater, Charles bridge, Novotného lávka and in the background Žofín Palace. As a shooting location I chose Manes’s bridge.

When I arrived at the location it was freezing cold and knew right away I made a mistake with my clothes. My God, was I freezing so much during the shoot. But that is a different story. What worried me more was sky. Nothing was happening, no clouds, just plain dark blue sky with a Moon. In that moment I realized entire shoot can end up in one of three ways.

The best option was I’ll get really nice clouds in the sky and light will just be magical. But I know chances on this one – 0,5% of 100%. Not cool. Option number two – no clouds but best morning light I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Yeah, I wasn’t lucky enough and also this didn’t happen. So the last possibility was a normal sunrise. Sun will go up but nothing else will happen. This means no superb photo.

Any way I made the most possible to get the best image I could until they turned off street lamps. Suddenly whole panorama was just boring. My only way to get away with decent photo was to use one of the first ones I did. After post-processing in Photoshop I made a walk-through video about few finishing touches on the photo.

Technical Stuff:
Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Lens: Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM Mark II @45mm
Aperture: f/11
Shutter Speed: 4″ (middle exposure)
ISO: 50
White Balance: Temp 5650/Tint -9
Processing: Lightroom, Photoshop, Nik Color Efex

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