Part 15 - the (close) Encounters Project
About the ( close ) Encounters project
This is a ongoing *) project that started about 2009 and is called the ( close ) Encounters.
The HDR ( High Dynamic Range ) portrait panorama’s are made out of 63 pictures (minimal 9 exposures per angle, 7 angles so 63 images are used to make a HDR portrait panorama.
That makes taking the image with some thrill — it could be ruined due to the fact that if the people are moving the portrait could fail. That idea makes it fascinating for me to do it, Its always exiting to shoot. Warn the "customers" *) in advance: “we will see in the final image who moved, so do not dare to move!” Until now ( almost ) everyone has listened very good in the portrait shoots from the last years.
More background about this project please see here.
*) this is a non - commercial project
( close ) Encounters project - Part 15 - Arthur van Amerongen & Rob Muntz
Arthur van Amerongen is a a Dutch writer, journalist & publicist.
Rob Muntz is a Dutch television maker.
p.s. sorry some parts of this page are in Dutch only
First just show a tonemapped version of the HDR panorama. Below those you can find some more info how this project started and other background notes plus additional images.
from left to right: 1) Arthur van Amerongen 2) Rob Muntz
when clicking on view 360°/VR another browser window opens so if nothing happens check the Block Popup window.
Arthur van Amerongen
wikipedia | De InburgerKing | Muntz & van de Wint
How it started
For several years enjoying columns/ articles from Arthur van Amerongen ( not books my concentration level is not suited for reading books ) . He has some great writing & observation skills, ( dark ) humor , self mockery ( very important - not so common - feature of mankind's DNA - in Tukkerland for example you get it automatically during paring if only one has the Tukker DNA ) etc. Due the fact that also follow him on Twitter suddenly thought about it "let simply send him a inventation" through a DM with Twitter on 20 Juli 2019.
As you can see he reacted very quickly.
Because he's living in Portugal the next question was when he would be in the Netherlands. Well Arthur mentioned that he will be in the Netherlands about November 2019 because he had a new book - Het Grote Foute Jongens Boek deel 2 - presentation with Rob Hoogland.
He wrote that it would be better getting in touch again a few weeks before that.
Two weeks before the recording
On 19 September 2019 contacted Arthur again for a appointment and we agreed to a recording date of 2 November 2019.
The recording should take place in Nederhorst den Berg.
On Friday 1 November sended a extra DM and asked for the exact address. The plan changed so the recording would not be in Nederhorst den Berg but in Zaandam at Rob Muntz ( thats how he enters this adventure )! What a great surprise was very glad that he liked the idea too to join also on the HDR panorama! Really like his he work he made in the past. One extra detail that made me extra excited was the mentioning of Arthur that the location in Zaandam is a parsonage ( pastorie ).
extra note: had the idea that Rob Hoogland would be joining too but that wasn't the case.
Also asked a extremely important extra question:
2 November recording day!
During the traveling by train to Zaandam fantasized about a recording in a Church ( in my brain - with some vivid imagination - already saw the scene for my eyes and imagined how it would look if Rob Hoogland would joint the recording too and worried about the lighting conditions due to the weather so the sun was not shining through the stained glass. Just in case they were not singing. ).
Meanwhile already was sure - also due to the vivid imagination - that Rob Muntz lives in a Church so when arriving there walked several time around the Church to look for the entrance. Saw no house number on the parsonage that looked like the number Arthur gave. Then after some searching saw that the address was a regular house in the neighborhood.
Knocked on the door and Arthur opened the door we shook hands and he immediately told that I'm looking familiar to him, he mentioned seeing me before. More about this later.
So discovered that the Church recording was not for real haha! Although after mentioning it to Rob he told that the keys could be arranged. Well that would make the recording too difficult - specially due to the grey weather outside and it got already dark outside so no nice light through the stained glass. Anyway the house was ok to do the recording there. Only asked Rob if he could "turn on" some candles, moved the cow to a a better position and looked witch choosing the correct spot I was not visible in the mirror. Rob asked it it should be cleaned up a bit answering that that's a nogo it should stay as it is otherwise it would be unnatural.
Before and during the recording we had some nice chats and my impression off both didn't surprise me at all , nice guys! ( checked that last word more then ones just in case ;) )
So the recording went ok and left after about 1,5 hours. Had a good feeling about the recorded images for creating the HDR Panorama.
When got home that evening always render previews and back up he originals to Blue Ray. Indeed the images and the previews looked ok!
Next morning sended the previews to Arthur and mentioned clearly "do not use those for publications they are not yet finished!"
Recorded 4 HDR panorama's and we agreed on the one that should processed.
Almost instantly Arthur asked if he could use the preview for their new show ( broadcasted on Youtube ). That was as mentioned not the way to go so told him that was going to create a quick tonemapped version ( in several formats + VR ) he could use for that show. So not the final one because that would take much more time for the color correction and retouch.
A couple hours later sended him version that's was good enough to be showed in public.
After a while saw their first test show on youtube appear and they used used the early preview version ( not the much better other version ) even the tripod is still visible! Wroehaahaha! This is the reason normally never send very early preview renders even when mention it explicitly "not suited for publication!" its can still be used.... in this case find it pretty funny specially for this background story. Below a screenshot of the show.
Contacted Arthur and mentioned it and he was going to something about it. In their next youtube show the pano was not uses anymore and that was a good decision. In my opinion find it suited very badly with the show in this setup.
If you are interested in seeing it please see below. So now and then check the comments below the shows most are very negative and find that pretty funny, not exactly know why guess people are taking it way to seriously. People forgot more and more that you still need to laugh even in a world that is a complete mess.
The first Pilot show
The second Pilot show
Technical- workflow notes
The following tools were used to create this final HDRI Panorama portret
Nikon D800 camera
Nikon 16 mm lens
360° precision panorama head
X-Rite ColorChecker Passport
Nikon ViewNX 2
Adobe Lightroom 5
PTGUI Pro 11.13
Affinity Photo 1.6.7
ps If you might wonder what's tonemapping? Please see here.
To keep this article readable not going to deep into details how it is actually made. Recording the source files for this HDR Panorama is about 1 minute. Processing the raw files and color correcting/ retouche is a much more time consuming process. Other reason that there can be several months between the recording and the posting here on this website: its a fun project and has to be done in the spare time.
The fantastic color correcting/ retouche magic is done again by my good friend Peter.
Every HDR tonemap needs its own special treatment. In this case made first a 12k HDR and tonemapped that one with Photomatix. Next rendered a extra 12k panorama from the middle exposure. Peter mixed those two together and did lots of extra retouche and color correcting. Not liked the brightness outside te house so sended Peter some extra darker exposures to create a more darker evening mood. Below you see a) the tonemapped version b) the middle exposure version and c) the final version
Some extra notes regarding the color correcting & retouch by Peter.
Due to the positioning of the camera/tripot and the lighting conditions wanted to avoid high ASA settings ( and avoid super long exposure time ) so needed a aperture of 9 and that almost on the edge there was some sharpening problems luckily Peter managed to correct it. Next to that Peter did a lot of extra refinements below you can see a couple of them.
Many thanks to Arthur and Rob for this nice adventure and the allowance of taking the HDR Pano portrait and the publishing of this article. Also big thanks to Peter who did his wonderfully color correction and retouch work again.
Perhaps you might ask why it was possible Arthur has recognized me, suddenly on 3 November had a flash back to 1989 and remembered him too!
Last update 4 December 2020:
Next HDR panorama portrait adventure is not known yet. For sure there will popup a new one somewhere in the future.
Other Editions ( close ) Encounters
Not had the time to put all older ( close ) Encounters back online. Below you can see all HDR panorama portrait 's that are currently online. The rest will appear later.
( close ) Encounters Part 1
( close ) Encounters Part 2
( close ) Encounters Part 3
( close ) Encounters Part 4
( close ) Encounters Part 5
( close ) Encounters Part 6
( close ) Encounters Part 7
( close ) Encounters Part 8
( close ) Encounters Part 9
( close ) Encounters Part 10
( close ) Encounters Part 11
( close ) Encounters Part 13
( close ) Encounters Part 14
( close ) Encounters Part 15
( close ) Encounters Part 16
( close ) Encounters Part 17
More background about this project please see here.