HDR photos

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by alasdairiain, Apr 26, 2010.

  1. macrumors newbie

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    Apr 26, 2010
    #1
  2. macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #2
  3. macrumors newbie

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    #3
    As long as it's here...

    I'm sorry but I don't really like them. They're probably great shots by themselves but I think HDR really ruins it. It's overdone and is just distracting. Remember, you don't have to do HDR for every photo. Try black and white or other techniques. ;)
     
  4. macrumors newbie

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  5. macrumors 6502

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    #5
    No offence mate but they are a perfect example of over the top HDR. You need to go really easy with the Photomatix settings because they make a mess real fast.


    Matt
     
  6. macrumors 6502

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    Jul 6, 2009
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    Los Angeles, CA
    #6
    Have to agree with others here. Good HDR enhances an otherwise nice photo, but the best of it never just screams "HDR!!!! IN YOUR FACE!!!!"

    Many of those shots are like 5% photo, and 95% processing effect. If the effect is so obvious that it's the main thing that registers in an image, then clearly it's way too much effect.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 26, 2010
    #7
    Hi guys,

    Thanks for the comments.

    HDR is defiantly one of those things you either love or hate. I would agree that I have been going over the top, but I kinda like that painting/out of this world look.

    Im definitely not a spammer lol, I am just looking to get involved with groups of people who can help my develop my hobby and give me the right advice and guidance as and when I need it.

    Any advice on which camera to buy with a total bias towards HDR photography.
    I am currently looking at the Nikon D300S (9 Point auto bracketing) and the Nikon D700 (full frame). I cannot choose! lol

    Regards
    Alasdair MacLeod
    http://www.macleod.arknet.co.uk/photoblog
     
  8. macrumors newbie

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    Mar 28, 2009
    #8
    To be honest you should concentrate on developing your photography skills, most of those shots are pretty poorly constructed if you take the HDR away. Buying a pro camera is just going to emphasise your mistakes, it's like buying a porsche the day you pass your driving test.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 26, 2010
    #9
    Hi, I appreciate your honesty.

    Could you please point out some areas of my work which you think need help.

    I am hunting for advice and guidance that will help me develop my skills and take them to the next level.

    Regards
    Alasdair MacLeod
    http://www.macleod.arknet.co.uk/photoblog
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

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    Memphis, TN
    #10
    HDR is great when used as it was originally designed.

    Check out this link.

    That is HDR usage to its full potential, right there.
     
  11. macrumors 65816

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    London
    #11
    Awesome use of HDR. :D
     
  12. macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    #12
    I'm a regular visitor of Kinder Scout, but I really don't like that photo. The sky looks horrible. Why have you added watermarks?
    I don't think they're great compositions. The rail one is quite good but again, that watermark just spoils the whole thing completely.
     
  13. macrumors 68040

    Knowlege Bomb

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    Feb 14, 2008
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    #13
    Wow, tough crowd.

    I thought there were quite a few neat looking shots. As with any other talent/hobby, the more time you put into it the more developed your skills will become. Try playing with some other photo effects and you may find something that illustrates your talent better than HDR.

    It's too bad everybody is being so critical. This is art, after all. Sure, a little constructive criticism is good, but just flat out "that looks like crap" without offering suggestions isn't doing anybody any good. That'd be like telling somebody their paintings look stupid and maybe they should look into another medium.
     
  14. macrumors regular

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    Los Angeles
    #14
    I kind of like them.

    Maybe not so much in their value as photographs enhanced by HDR, but they have an illustrated/painted look to them that I could see accompanying short stories and such.
     
  15. macrumors newbie

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    Mar 28, 2009
    #15
    Really? I'd rather be honest than passive.

    It's not just about pointing out mistakes, it's about getting the best out of a photo. If HDR isn't going to make a shot better don't do it. The fact that you've got a HDR blog instead of a general photography blog is a bit rookie, seems like you've just discovered the effect and decided that every photo you're going to take from now on will be edited that way.

    Try composing shots for the simple fact that they'd make good pictures. Like this one. I bet there was loads of perfect landscapes hanging round to be photographed, but you ruined it by only thinking of what your new HDR program could do.
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    Shotglass

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    Feb 4, 2006
    #16
    Seeing as how the OP asked for critique, I guess it's only fair that he gets some. Doesn't have to be in-your-face, but it should be honest.
    I for one agree with the crowd in that HDR is a technique that should get about as much use as, say, using a fish-eye lens. Meaning it's appropriate in certain situations, but those situations only come once in a blue moon.
    With regard to your images, you might want to do some reading on composition. And don't be discouraged by everyone else's criticism, we all had our flaws in the beginning (I remember converting all my photos to B/W to try to make people notice them), and most of us have flaws even after years of learning. Point is, you never stop making mistakes. But if you learn from those, there will be fewer and fewer mistakes, until you achieve perfection. Or at least something in that ballpark. :)
     
  17. thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 26, 2010
    #17
    Hey guys.

    I gotta be honest I didn't expect such a good response lol.

    Shotglass really got me lol. I started taking pictures in January this year. I haven't taken very many and HDR was the reason I started.

    I enjoy the creating something element as much as the taking a picture element.

    I like to see the vibrancy in the images that over processed HDRs can make.

    At the moment I am using a very old and cheap bridge camera and to be honest the results from my none HDR images are pretty poor.

    If you check back on my blog within the next few weeks I should have uploaded some more images that are none HDR.

    If you guys were me and wanted to focus on your HDR photography, what kind of situations or subjects would you look out for?

    Also, I have a problem when photographing landscapes, I allays find that the view the camera can shoot is not wide enough. Is there any way of dealing with this without using panorama or buying a new camera?

    Thanks for all the good responses.

    Regards
    Alasdair MacLeod
    http://www.macleod.arknet.co.uk/photoblog
     
  18. macrumors regular

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    Los Angeles
    #18
    Get a wide-angle lens.
     
  19. thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Apr 26, 2010
    #19
    How do you do HDR?

    What techniques do you employ when taking HDR shots?

    Do you have preferred subjects?
    Do you have a specific amount of exposures you use?
    Do you always use RAW or JPEG?
    Do you have preferred software?

    I’m looking to improve my skills and develop my ability in this area.
    Feel free to check out my current work at http://www.macleod.arknet.co.uk/photoblog and provide some feedback

    Regards

    Alasdair MacLeod
    http://www.macleod.arknet.co.uk
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    emorydunn

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2006
    Location:
    Austin Texas
    #20
    I'm going to start you off with my patented list of HDR pet peeves.

    1) HDR does not make a bad photo good.
    2) HDR isn't something to use for every single shot.
    3) For the love of god, don't turn all the sliders to the max.

    Now, for your questions. You can have any subject. I've seen some very nice HDR portraits. But usually HDR is used for landscapes and architecture. Still subjects work best simply because any movement will cause weird ghosting.

    The minimum number of exposures is three but more works. Basically you want to have a "normal" exposure, a shot exposed for the darkest part of the scene, and one exposed for the brightest part. And you can add more if you want for other levels of brightness.

    I shoot everything in RAW anyway, but use RAW for HDR's. This will allow you more room to mess with each photo and give you better dynamic range (which is what you're after).

    I use Photomatix (which is kind of expensive) but I think it gives the best results. Photoshop has an HDR function but it sucks, and from what I've heard it isn't any better in CS5.

    As for your gallery. Personally I find them over processed. I think the best one of the lot is "Train Line Towards Sun 1".

    Remember, HDR is best when used on a scene that has areas too bright and/ or too dark to capture with one exposure.
     
  21. macrumors 6502

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    Birmingham, AL
    #21
    Me personally i feel HDR works best with buildings but can HDR can look great on any subject if tonemapped correctly.

    Its best to shoot in RAW as give room for more control and make the pic less noisy when your editing, ome people take 1 RAW shot and edit the exposures i lightroom or simular but unless the subject is moving take at least 3 pics at different exposures.

    Me personally my favored setup is 3 shots at +1, 0, -1EV the more pics you take the more is being crammed into the final image which can result in more noise.

    Some times i shoot at +2, 0, -2EV all depends how bright/dark the shot is.

    Everyone does there HDR differently but most who do it tonemap well over the top and takes the point of HDR away.

    Best thing is keep re-doing the images you got practice practice practice, mine started off not great now i've got them down to a good natural look which is how there suppose to look. There not suppose to look cartoonie and fake.

    Hope this helps

    Matt
     
  22. macrumors 68040

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    #22
    Sticky? Please?

    :cool:
     
  23. macrumors 65816

    Shotglass

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    Feb 4, 2006
    #23
    The example posted before with the image in the church was pretty much spot-on. Also a useful application for HDR is in high-contrast landscapes, like a row of mountains with the sun in the background or something like that. Some of those situations (esp. the latter) can be fixed with a partial ND filter, though. Be sure to look those up.
     
  24. macrumors Core

    Dagless

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    Darkplace Hospital
    #24
    You're not going to ruin your next photos with obtrusive watermarks are you?
     

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