Work Resumed on the Downtown Span of the Ohio River Bridges Project This Week.

Work resumed on the Downtown Span of the Ohio River Bridges Project this week. Today’s images were captured in Section 2 which is the river crossing and approach on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River. The bridge towers are progressing well and I wanted to shoot the resumption of the work on the Downtown Span.

Tower Four East viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site.
Tower Four East viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site.

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The images in this post are all HDR images created using my normal method of shooting a three frame bracket set of -2, 0 and +2 EV exposures that I merge in NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 and then finish in Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop CS5. I adopted this workflow during the past year through trial and error because Apple is no longer supporting Aperture 3 and I felt it was time to further hone my skills with Photoshop. I have used Aperture since it was first launched and felt that it really met my needs but Apple’s decision has forced me to join the tribe of Adobe users for my processing. At some point this year I will probably switch my catalog to Lightroom 5 but I’m not ready to do that just yet. I am currently loading everything I shoot into both the Aperture 3 and Lightroom 5 catalogs so that when I decide to transition I will have both data bases to refer to.

Tower Four East viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site. #2
Tower Four East viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site. #2

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The second image is a landscape version of the first one. In it you can see the Ironworkers placing one of the cable stay boxes on top of the western tower at Pier Four. Once it is in place the Carpenters will build a concrete form around it and it will be encased in concrete. The cables will be threaded into the tube on the side of angled down toward the bridge deck and attached to the edge girders when they are in place. I like the way the lines from the crane booms and the bridge on the left frame the tower section and focus the viewer’s eye on it.

Ohio River Bridge Downtown Span Towers viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site.
Ohio River Bridge Downtown Span Towers viewed from the Kentucky Approach job site.

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The third image shows all six towers as seen from the Kentucky Approach to the new bridge. Seeing the Carpenters in the foreground along the tower base give an idea of the scale of these structures. Once again this is a HDR image that I followed my normal workflow to produce.

Panorama of the Ohio River Bridge Downtown Span's Kentucky Approach job site in Waterfront Park.
Panorama of the Ohio River Bridge Downtown Span’s Kentucky Approach job site in Waterfront Park.

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After shooting for an hour or so from land I decided to climb up the western tower at Pier 3 and get another perspective of the job site. Standing at the top of the scaffolding on Tower 3 East I shot a six panel panorama in HDR. Starting with the eastern side of the scene I first shot my usual bracket set of each scene and then rotated the camera approximately 15 degrees and captured the next three frame bracket set. For this image I used six points of view to capture the job site from east to west.

Back at my computer, using Photoshop CS5,  I stitched together all six frames from each separate bracket set based on the exposure value. Once I created three panoramas of -2, 0 and +2 EV exposures I took all three of them back into Photoshop CS5 and used the Photomerge command to build a HDR image from them. When merging them for panoramas I used the Auto setting and Blend Images Together setting. I also made sure to also check the Vignette Removal and Geometric Distortion Correction boxes too. I find this really helpful since I nearly always shoot need to shoot handheld and these setting usually give me good results. After the three panoramas are stitched I used NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 to create a single HDR image that I process using my standard workflow.

View of Bridge Towers as they rise above the Ohio River in Louisville, Kentucky.
View of Bridge Towers as they rise above the Ohio River in Louisville, Kentucky.

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Standing high above the river I saw this scene of the bridge towers and the existing Kennedy and Big Four bridges with the shadow of the Kennedy on the water. I liked the composition and the way the whole scene converged  in the distance. I also included the work platform in the upper right corner to further emphasize the scale of the scene.

Carpenters Working On Tower Three West From an Aerial Lift.
Carpenters Working On Tower Three West From an Aerial Lift.

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The final image in today’s post is of two Carpenters working high above the ground installing support for another work platform on Tower 3 east. This is another HDR image from a three frame bracket set. Because they were moving I had to use an Anti-ghosting amount of 80% to get a clean image of the two men and their aerial lift platform. I have tried several of the HDR apps on the market today but NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 is, in my experience, the best at handling movement. As someone who shoots almost exclusively handheld I have not seen another app that does anything near what NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 does.

Any of the images on Speedddemon2 can be purchased directly from me using the contact form below.

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6 thoughts on “Work Resumed on the Downtown Span of the Ohio River Bridges Project This Week.

  1. Always a pleasure to see your work, Nick, documenting the construction of this bridge. I have to ask when is the work scheduled to be completed, which begs the question what will you do when it is finished? 🙂

    Happy New Year!

    1. Thanks Calvin I’m pleased to hear that you enjoy my work. Completion is expected in mid 2016. After this finishes I plan to climb back on my motorcycle and resume traveling around the US with my camera. I love the feel of the open road and exploring places I haven’t seen before.

  2. VG work Nick!! – I have crossed every bridge in Ohio for sure (bikes, cars, trucks). Assume you are post-processing (vibrancy). I use ACDSee Pro for editing and finalizing for print with Corel Photo Paint and Corel Painter.
    I live in Toronto Can and I have been taking shots (4500) of construction cranes for the past 5 yrs. There are more cranes in the air here than the rest of North America (237 as of last week). Will set up new Gallery for my WS shortly??
    Do you use Skype?

    1. Hi Richard, thanks for the kind words. Yes I use a lot of apps but my favorites are NIK HDR Efex Pro 2, Aperture 3 and Adobe Camera Raw. Most of my work is done in HDR because I like the way it allows me to show detail in highlights and shadows. I may finally switch to Lightroom 5 this year but for now I’m happy with the way I have my Aperture 3 catalog set up.

      Re Skype: No I don’t use it.

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