Real Gabinete Português de Leitura

Daily Travel Photo: Really Old Books

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The Set Up

When the King John fled Portugal during the days that Napoleon Bonaparte was bitting at the ankles of Europe, he headed to his colony of Brazil.  When he came, he brought all of his things, including his entire library.  To this day, that library remains in Rio de Janeiro, and even though it now has a couple computers and WiFi it holds onto its authentic charm.  This may have been the most photogenic library I’ve ever been.  In fact, I may come out with a photo essay on the library later this week.

The Shot

Shooting in museums and dark indoor spaces like this is not easy.  Especially when tripods are not allowed. For these shots I pulled out three tricks from my book.  1) I shot all images on a monopod (tripods aren’t allowed because they take up too much space, monopods are fine).  If you don’t have a monopod, find a table to rest on.  2) I shot the images with an ISO slightly higher, 200.  Normally higher ISO speeds can ruin a photo, covering it with noise.  However, a small jump to 200 never hurt anything.  And 3) I shot with the exposure set slightly underexposed, this meant for faster shutter speeds and less chance of blur.  If you shoot on RAW you can gain that .5-1 spot of underexposure in the editing process.

This image in particular I shot at 18mm at f3.5 with a shutter speed of 1/4, ISO200.

What’s Next?

I fall in love with Rio de Janeiro, and I think the world will too when it finally sees it through the eyes of the Olympics and World Cup.  The upcoming article, which is live tomorrow, is called “When the World Sees Rio”


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