1.2. Stage 2

1.2.1. Shooting and digitizing the pictures

I set the camera to maximum resolution and slight JPEG compression; the white balance manually to 5500 K, a color temperature that corresponds to Fuji Velvia film; the camera's sensitivity to 100 ISO; and exposure to manual mode.

Choosing the right white balance was essential

to getting the beautiful blue of the ice.

I stopped the diaphragm down to f-14 to get plenty of depth of field. (Stopping it down further would have caused increased aberration and diffraction problems, and produced a less sharp photograph.)

Using the 70–200mm zoom lens in spot mode, I took a light meter reading on the white snow at the foot of the mountain, and increased it by two stops, to 1/13 second. I shot the four pictures with the same settings, without adjusting for the lighter values in the center of the first picture or the darker values at the right of the fourth one.

The four pictures were taken with a partial overlap of 10–20%. I carefully framed them so that their edges were in parts of the ice curtain and not the mountain, to avoid any trouble in assembling the pictures due to my choice of the 14mm lens.

It took me three hours of shooting and 98 shots to produce enough different pictures to give me a choice of the four best.

Back at my car, I checked the data I'd transferred from the camera's flash cards to my laptop's hard disk. I wanted to make sure the intense cold hadn't affected the data.

I used the 70–200mm lens to get a more accurate ...

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