Cellpic Sunday – The Tower of London

The Tower of London.

London, United Kingdom.

William the Conqueror built a massive stone fort in the 1070s no doubt to the consternation of defeated Londoners. Over the centuries, the fort has been expanded and has been the home of the Crown Jewels, other royal possessions, and on occasion, the royal families as well.

The tower has stories of torture and executions, of ghosts and the Yeoman Warders (more commonly known as the Beefeaters.) At one point the fortress housed the Tower Mint where coins of the realm were made. Over three million visitors a year tour the citadel. As of this writing, the tower admission fee is £29.90, about half that for children. If you are interested in reading about the history of this mighty fortress, you can find a great synopsis here.

About the photo: We were staying at the CitizenM Tower of London Hotel, only a few hundred yards from the tower. This view was captured with my Samsung S20U from a vantage point near Tower Hill, the Underground station. The view features the northwest corner of the tower. The main gates are along the south wall that borders the River Thames. I took two cellphone photos and used Lightroom to merge them into a single panoramic image via Adobe Lightroom. After cropping and other basic edits, I used Luminar Neo’s Noiseless tool to reduce any noise in the image and then made my normal tweaks to bring out details on the wall.

Recently I was asked in the comments why I use Lightroom instead of the camera’s panoramic shot mode to take panoramic images. Most of the time I use either my Sony or my Nikon camera, I shoot in RAW format and bracket three exposures to convert to HDR (high dynamic range), then capture another HDR image to the left or right being sure to include part of the original subject that is in the other photo as well. Once the images are merged into HDR, I then use Lightroom to create the panoramic image. In fact, the latest version of Lightroom can create HDR and merge the panorama in one step.

Given that the cellphone images I capture are in JPEG mode rather than RAW mode, I could just as easily use the cellphone camera’s panoramic mode, but by creating two photos, I don’t need to fiddle with the camera modes and can simply use the same process to create my panoramic shots in post-production as I do for my “real” cameras. Don’t be surprised if sometime I decided to experiment with the differences especially since I’ve just purchased a new cellphone. I have yet to try it out for images as I’ve been busy rebuilding my app logins.

I encourage fellow bloggers to create their own Cellpic Sunday posts. I never have a specific topic for this feature, and the only rules are that the photo must be captured with a cell phone, iPad, or another mobile device… If you have an image from a drone or even a dashcam, that’s acceptable as well. The second rule is to link your challenge response to this post or leave a comment here with a link to your post in the comment. Oh, and, you don’t have to post it on a Sunday.

John Steiner


  1. New cellphone, eh? That sounds fun. Great photo however you caught it. It’s a huge place! Wow! I’ve been there, but I didn’t remember how enormous it was.

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