Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Bridge of Sighs

Many people will know that last year I visited Venice, and as spectacular as it was, there was one major disappointment. The iconic 'Bridge of Sighs' was completely surrounded by scaffolding and advertising boards, making any 'true' picture of it impossible. I took many HDR's in Venice but the Bridge of Sighs was not something I camE back with any cherished pictures of. I forgot to mention there was a second major disappointment as well in Venice, which was that St. Mark's Basilica also had scaffolding on one side of the roof. Again, exterior shots were therefore unlikely to be anything memorable, though the basilica is still one of the most amazing buildings I have ever been inside.

Perhaps slightly less awe-inspiring, I visited Oxford last Friday and it at least did give me a chance to photograph their own 'Bridge of Sighs' although it's real name is the 'Hertford Bridge'. The Bridge of Sighs was a nickname given to it almost immediately though, and yet it resembles both the Bridge of Sighs in Venice, in the way it connects 2 buildings, but also the Rialto Bridge in how it actually looks. The building in the background and underneath the bridge is the Sheldonian Theatre.

This HDR is from 3 shots and did take quite a long time to post-process. I did a lot of layer-masking to prevent halos and 'dirty halos' (as I call them). Layer-masking also helped make the buildings in the background stand out much clearer, as opposed to the first tone-mapped version, which seemed to blur a few of the features. In all it was about 2 hours work.


  1. Excellent piece Pete! Great framing, and great processing.

  2. Yeah, it was the same for me when I went to Venice. I was quite gutted to see the advertising boards up at the Bridge, very bad taste!! This is very well composed Pete, Oxford has many photo ops.