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South Bend River Lights
Camera: Pentax K-3 Photo Location: South Bend, Indiana 
Posted By: narual, 06-04-2015, 07:01 AM

My town recently celebrated its 150th birthday. To commemorate the occasion, they created an interactive light sculpture on the river.

The background and a neat video showing how it's supposed to work linked below, but all the photos/video there are CGI mockups or photoshopped, and a lot of them are from angles you couldn't actually take a photo from without having your camera on a drone or something.
https://downtownsouthbend.com/river-lights

I made it back out last night and took some actual photos from a couple of vantage points. Happened to have a nice moon rising, so I incorporated it into a couple of shots.


50-135 at 65 mm-⁄₁₅ sec at /11 ISO 640, tripod
(some contrast boosting across the board. There's an inverted radial filter on the moon - it's pretty much right off the camera, and the rest of the image is boosted by a touch under 3 stops)


Fairly heavy crop from 50-135 at 55 mm ⁄₁₀₀ sec at - 2.8 ISO 6400, with tripod. I was actually just checking the light and liked how it turned out.


15mm ltd ⁄₂₀ sec at - 4.0-ISO 6400 handheld, cropped, fair amount of post production to make it not be a giant blob of magenta


15 mm ltd ⁄₅₀ sec at - 8.0-ISO 4000 handheld. Wish I'd had a wider lens on me. Or that I'd taken the time to set up a tripod and use composition adjustment, at least... but there were people walking around and I didn't want to block anyone's path, especially since they weren't all perfectly sober.


15 mm ltd -⅕ sec at - 8.0-ISO 6400 -- handheld. I really should have used a tripod here, my hands aren't steady enough for a 1/5 second exposure. There's not all that much post done on this at all.. just cropped maybe 5% of the top and left and reduced highlights, brightened shadows, and boosted clarity. This is pretty close to how it looked to the eye (except it was a bit darker since I can't do a 1/5 second exposure at 6400 ISO with the mark 1 eyeball.) The tree isn't pink, that's just the color of light that was projected onto the statue (titled "Keeper of the Flame" or "keepers of the fire" depending on which plaque you read. It looks like an I beam and a TV antenna had a child and dropped it in the river between a couple of waterfalls. It moves in reaction to wind, but it's geared or something so the reaction is very slow. It might take a minute or so to turn 60 degrees on a very windy day).


15 mm ltd, ⁄₁₃ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. I'm not sure if it periodically goes "rainbow mode" or if it's a reaction to multiple people moving around inside the columns (it's interactive using motion sensors somehow), but a few times it shot the full spectrum of colors across the river. This was one.


15 mm-⅙ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. The "light crescent" part of the installation. Next time I'll have to get closer, but I didn't want to disturb the couple who was getting frisky beneath it.


15 mm ltd ⁄₂₀ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. The lights beneath the bridge were stuck on one color most of the evening. Just before I left, they started changing, too.


15 mm ltd -⁄₁₃ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. For the last 15 minutes of every hour, the colors are disabled and the sculptures project only white light, to show the river in its natural state (well, that's how they word it. The natural state was a lot darker than this.)

It also flashes at the top of each hour, with the number of flashes corresponding to the time, but no good way to photograph that.

At any rate, it's pretty neat, and if any of you are ever in Northern Indiana, you should visit and check them out.

I'm glad they didn't light up the East Race, though -- it was the USA's first manmade, controllable white water rapids. The place I took the 15mm shots from is on an island between the river and the East Race. I have lots of photos of that elsewhere.
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01-08-2019, 05:23 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by narual Quote
My town recently celebrated its 150th birthday. To commemorate the occasion, they created an interactive light sculpture on the river.

The background and a neat video showing how it's supposed to work linked below, but all the photos/video there are CGI mockups or photoshopped, and a lot of them are from angles you couldn't actually take a photo from without having your camera on a drone or something.
River Lights - DTSB

I made it back out last night and took some actual photos from a couple of vantage points. Happened to have a nice moon rising, so I incorporated it into a couple of shots.


50-135 at 65 mm-⁄₁₅ sec at /11 ISO 640, tripod
(some contrast boosting across the board. There's an inverted radial filter on the moon - it's pretty much right off the camera, and the rest of the image is boosted by a touch under 3 stops)


Fairly heavy crop from 50-135 at 55 mm ⁄₁₀₀ sec at - 2.8 ISO 6400, with tripod. I was actually just checking the light and liked how it turned out.


15mm ltd ⁄₂₀ sec at - 4.0-ISO 6400 handheld, cropped, fair amount of post production to make it not be a giant blob of magenta


15 mm ltd ⁄₅₀ sec at - 8.0-ISO 4000 handheld. Wish I'd had a wider lens on me. Or that I'd taken the time to set up a tripod and use composition adjustment, at least... but there were people walking around and I didn't want to block anyone's path, especially since they weren't all perfectly sober.


15 mm ltd -⅕ sec at - 8.0-ISO 6400 -- handheld. I really should have used a tripod here, my hands aren't steady enough for a 1/5 second exposure. There's not all that much post done on this at all.. just cropped maybe 5% of the top and left and reduced highlights, brightened shadows, and boosted clarity. This is pretty close to how it looked to the eye (except it was a bit darker since I can't do a 1/5 second exposure at 6400 ISO with the mark 1 eyeball.) The tree isn't pink, that's just the color of light that was projected onto the statue (titled "Keeper of the Flame" or "keepers of the fire" depending on which plaque you read. It looks like an I beam and a TV antenna had a child and dropped it in the river between a couple of waterfalls. It moves in reaction to wind, but it's geared or something so the reaction is very slow. It might take a minute or so to turn 60 degrees on a very windy day).


15 mm ltd, ⁄₁₃ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. I'm not sure if it periodically goes "rainbow mode" or if it's a reaction to multiple people moving around inside the columns (it's interactive using motion sensors somehow), but a few times it shot the full spectrum of colors across the river. This was one.


15 mm-⅙ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. The "light crescent" part of the installation. Next time I'll have to get closer, but I didn't want to disturb the couple who was getting frisky beneath it.


15 mm ltd ⁄₂₀ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. The lights beneath the bridge were stuck on one color most of the evening. Just before I left, they started changing, too.


15 mm ltd -⁄₁₃ sec at - 4.0-ISO 2500 handheld. For the last 15 minutes of every hour, the colors are disabled and the sculptures project only white light, to show the river in its natural state (well, that's how they word it. The natural state was a lot darker than this.)

It also flashes at the top of each hour, with the number of flashes corresponding to the time, but no good way to photograph that.

At any rate, it's pretty neat, and if any of you are ever in Northern Indiana, you should visit and check them out.

I'm glad they didn't light up the East Race, though -- it was the USA's first manmade, controllable white water rapids. The place I took the 15mm shots from is on an island between the river and the East Race. I have lots of photos of that elsewhere.
I especially like photos 3, 6, 7, 9, because they show how close you were to downtown.
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