Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tips on Taking photographs in the Alhambra- Part II - Equipment

First, NO tripods are allowed. This is normal in most places otherwise you will end up with a hundreds of tripods set up creating chaos and bottlenecks. I brought a small Gorillapod and although I did not use it, I am sure that nobody would have objected, if I wrapped it to a fence or similar object once in the gardens. Also, once you are in one of the Alcazaba towers, I think that you would be safe with something like a small tripod placed on the outer walls.

  • I would strongly suggest a lens with Image Stabilization, it will give you a bit more stability therefore you could bring down the ISO and reduce noise because the rooms in the palace are dark. This will be great for some of the interiors of the palaces, to get some of the spectacularly intricate designs of the ceiling or even the walls.
  • A super-wide zoom is a necessity, I bought a Tokina 11-16 mm 2.8 for this purpose. This lens is super wide allowing for very small and tight places or rooms, it also produces minimal distortion and also it has a great 2.8 aperture to let lots of light in. 
  • Normal zoom, this is essential for the classic places, like the Patio de la Acequia, New Gardens in Generalife or the Jardin del Partal outside the Nasrid Palace. 
  • ND filter, would be great for a silky water look in Generalife (provided that you took a small tripod with you). However, you risk being growled at if you set anything within a building. 
    · I took a Levin-made-panorama-maker gadget. I placed it in the outer walls in the Alcazaba and Palace of Charles V to produce these panoramas of Albayzin and the Alhambra itself. I will publish another article about this singular gadget, it is light, small and it works great.
  • Bring plenty of storage, I shot over 300 photos at 20 MB each (RAW+JPG)

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