Thursday, September 8, 2011

HDR Saves Even a “Bad Day”


In going back over some images I captured in Yosemite a few months ago, I was once again reminded that even a “bad day” with good subject material can yield great images. When I was in Yosemite the light was flat, the valley seemed gray and the clouds were low. I never did see Half Dome. Below is what an unedited RAW image file from the HDR set looked like. Regardless I decided to shoot HDR exposure sets keeping B&W processing in mind.

Blog_20110424_1-6I just got around to processing some of the images and am quite happy with it. Others ones like that below came out quite nice as well.The power the photographer has with HDR photography and the latest image processing tools is impressive.

Yosemite NotchYou might be asking if HDR was necessary. The answer is yes and no. The light was such that I could capture images like the first one in one exposure (the one shown is an example). However, I choose HDR to get the most data I could in the shadows and highlights. This allowed me great deal of latitude in bringing out a lot of contrast and detail. 3 exposure was probably plenty, but I don’t get to Yosemite very often.

Blog Images: Both images were generated in Photomatix 4 from 5 exposure sets. They were then post processed using Nik’s SilverEfx Pro. Some additional adjustments were made in Lightroom3.0 and/or with Nik’s Viveza2.  The last image was shot with a 450mm focal length to grab the “V’ composition I saw in the distance.