Paisley Violin Cafe Patio Bar

Continuing my series of images from Grand Avenue in Phoenix AZ:

Just a short post tonight because I agreed to meet two photographer buddies from work at an ungodly hour in the morning to do a photowalk in Tempe–

Today’s post is a shot of the patio bar outside the Paisley Violin Cafe.  We stopped there on our photowalk last Saturday to grab something cold to drink.  So much of what’s interesting in the area is BEHIND what you see from the street.  The front of the Paisley certainly catches your eye from the street, but the really interesting stuff is in the back–a group of small artists studios in various colors, a patio bar, a fountain, big shady trees, and outdoor art installations.  If you don’t get out of your car and use your feet to carry your eyes around, you miss a lot of really cool stuff!

I love this shot, even if the composition isn’t the greatest.  This HDR was created from three hand-held brackets, and I just love the little details that make up the image–the empty Coke machine, the movie poster, the leftover fast food wrappers on the bar, and especially the mirror over the sink that reflects the house across the street with the wooden shingles.

Paisley Violin Cafe

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Put Me Down!

While on our photowalk along Grand Avenue yesterday, we stopped at the Paisley Violin Cafe for a little liquid refreshment. The Paisley is an eclectic little art, music, wine, beer and food establishment that caters to the downtown arts scene. Its another one of those hidden gems that you must get out of your car and use your feet in order to fully appreciate.

When we walked around to the back patio, we found a little courtyard surrounded by tiny little art cottages, an outdoor bar, some art objects on display, and some colorful characters sitting around chatting and enjoying the beautiful day. I certainly recommend that you check this place out if you’re ever in the neighborhood.

Here’s a shot of one of the “art” pieces that was on display behind the Paisley:

Put Me Down!

I shot the images for this HDR hand-held in three brackets (-2.0/0.0/+2.0) and processed them in Photomatix v4. My post-processing was done in Topaz Adjust (using one of my custom presets) and Topaz DeNoise. I then used the Paintshop Photo Pro X3 Curves tool to adjust exposure, and then used the Saturation and Sharpening tools to make final tweaks.

Such a fun place!

I also have to give a shout out to the HDR Cookbook for all the great tips on HDR processing. I’ve adjusted my workflow over the past week using some of the tips in this blog, and I think the final images I’m producing are so much better as a result. I highly recommend this blog for those who are HDR fans or who want to learn the process!