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Daily Archives: November 26th, 2008

Over the weekend I spent about an hour wandering around Canary Wharf in the freezing cold. I would have hung about for longer but my fingers stopped working and I gradually lost the ability to control my camera. I did however manage to capture this rather bizarre image from Cabot Square in the shadow of the UK’s three tallest skyscrapers. Only after I’d stitched these shots together did I realise how symmetrical the place was, and that Cabot Square was in fact a robot in disguise.

cabot place planet

I’ve started playing around with some of the plugins for Gimp from the plugin registry. On Ubuntu you’ll probably need to install libgimp, then you can compile and install from source pretty easily. I find that HDR tends to result in quite ‘noisy’ patches of sky, despite the best efforts of Dynamic Photo HDR to reduce this unwanted effect. I used the magic tool to select the sky then applied a touch of wavelet denoise to reduce this. It works well and in this case also emphasises the rigid buildings against a cleaner, softer sky.

Some of the architecture around Canary Wharf is really impressive. I particularly like the tube station – designed by Sir Norman Foster – which consists of two curved glass canopies at the east and west ends of the station that cover the entrances and refract daylight into the ticket hall below.

canary wharf station

Combining high ISO setting and a fast shutter speed, I was able to get some pretty good hand-held HDR results. Even without the HDR, the lighting, materials and sheer scale of the station create a really futuristic atmosphere – maybe one of the reasons it was used in the post-apocalyptic science fiction zombie film 28 Days Weeks Later.