Photoshoot for a grand opening spa at New Jersey

June 20, 2013


Today I traveled to Jersey City to photography a grand opening spa called Himalaya Herbal Spa. It is a interior photography assignment with only a couple of people shots.

The place is much larger than I expect. I was like WOW when I first arrived. My perception about Chinese hosted spa in the city is usually those small size space with like 2-4 rooms.

This one is huge. First they have a big waiting room. Looks very neat.

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Entering inside, it is a long aisle. Here is the view from both end.

08-IMG_6203_4_5_tonemapped as Smart Object-1 07-IMG_6200_1_2_tonemapped as Smart Object-1On the side of the aisle are some massage rooms, one bathroom and one shower room.

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Then it is I think the highlight of the spa, the food massage area. It is really gorgeous.

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This shot I used fisheye lens. Only fisheye lens is able to capture this entire view here.

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There are also couple rooms and steam room downstairs.

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All the interior shots were processed using HDR technique. I used photomatix pro for process HDR.

The dynamic range of the scene is not vastly broad. The major thing is to recover the overexposed highlight from lamp.

This is a single normal exposed photo. As you can see not too bad. 

I think we do not really need to use HDR process for this job. We can just recover the highlight and open up the shadows by use some masking in photoshop. That is easier than use HDR software to process. Besides I do not really like using photomatix pro. It is too complicated to create natural looking HDR image. And it does not doing a good job of deghoest automatically. It require a lot manual deghoest. It is time consuming. I also tried the Nik HDR Efex pro 2. I like this one more. It is easier to creat natural looking HDR image and doing a better job of deghoest automatically.

I also think I should bracket more photo with less exposure difference. I was using -3, 0, +3 bracket. Now I discovered it produce better quality HDR photo by bracketing with 1 stop exposure difference. so it would be better if I was using -3, -2, -1, 0, 1, 2, 3 instead. It will have better transition from highlight to dark area.

I was using Canon 7d with Canon 10-22 lens. I only used at 10mm setting for this job. That is equal to 16mm on full frame. I also used the samyang 8mm fisheye lens for certain shots as I showed you before.

In my opinion there is not much if any difference of image quality between using cropped sensor and full frame for interior photography. I used lowest ISO setting and stop down lens to f8 or f11.


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