Columbus Day

This image was made Saturday at the San Rafael 100th anniversary celebration. Members of the Knights of Columbus escorted the clergy members from the Post office to the Mission, then stood guard at the entrance to the chapel. Their uniforms were spotless and the gentlemen wearing them were obviously proud to do so.
My first shots were of the three men in the entryway. Although it works well for setting place, the wide angle lens put some distance into the image and lost some of the detail in their uniforms and the ecpressions in their faces.
So I switched to a telephoto lens and looked for a tight image with a clean background. The two gentlemen on the right were my first idea, giving a repeating pattern to the image. The background did not work well though, and I didn't even press the shutter. I didn't because that's when I noticed how clean and colorful the wreath behin the other man was.
Becuase he was in shade with daylight streaming in and a lot of white on his uniform I under-exposed the imae and shot in RAW/NEF format. Using the controls in Photoshop CS2 I was able to bring out the shadows slightly without losing the highlight details. And I love the slight smile on his face. Rather than guarding the entryway their presence was an invitation to join in.
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