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  • Glowing sunrise over Grossmünster, Zurich

    View of Grossmünster church and Münsterbrücke, the bridge connecting both sides of the Old Town in Zurich. Taken on a special morning when the high clouds caught the first light of the rising sun.

    The Old Town of Zurich has a few beautiful and very scenic landmarks. One of them is definitely the Grossmünster church with its iconic twin towers. At sunrise this side of the Old Town is the perfect location to catch the first colors. Here the Münsterbrücke bridge provides a solid leading line which results in a simple but compelling composition.

    How it was shot

    Capturing all the colors at sunrise can be challenging as the rising sun comes out right behind the church.

    To capture the full dynamic range of this scene I had to use multiple exposures with different shutter speeds. The base exposure of 1/2 seconds and the underexposed frame of 1/4 were used to bring the colors of the sky and the brightest street lights. The overexposed frame of 2 seconds was used for the details of the buildings and the bridge and some parts of the water.

    Underexposed frame -1
    Base frame
    Overexposed frame +2

    Post processing

    After the initial basic edits in Lightroom, the three exposures were brought into Photoshop and combined to balance the scene. Here, I also did some further minor adjustments like removing the distractions, dodging and burning and fixing the contrast.

    The resulting photograph showcases the amazing sunrise colors of that morning and the beautiful architecture of the Old Town of Zurich:

    Raw image
    • Camera: Fuji X-T3
    • Lens: Samyang 12mm 2.0 @f8
    • 3 exposures: 1/4, 1/2 and 2 seconds