Processing HDR Photography

Lesson 7/7 - Additional HDR Tips


Processing HDR Photography


Lesson Info

Additional HDR Tips

I like to shoot inside of churches. More often than not, I shoot inside of dark environments because dark environments produce nicer pictures. This tends to be the way that it works. I'm gonna right-click inside of here. I'm gonna go to Edit In and, or Photo Merge. I'm gonna go to HDR, I'm gonna select this from this list. We're gonna grab that HDR preview. I don't even know why I did this. I probably should have just done it another way, right? It has a very Gothic feel to it, which I think is kind of cool. It has a supremely yellow feel to it, which I don't think is cool. But I'm gonna merge that and while we merge that, oh it's actually gonna merge it a lot faster than I thought it was going to. Oh, I already have one here! Pre-cooked. So that's the file, that came out. If I were to take a look at that file inside of here, notice that I can increase or decrease ten stops of exposure. That's a lot of information. The good part about this, though, is I can increase all of my temperatu...

re and get it exactly the way that I need it, right? If you notice, the temperature kind of sucked, right? But I need to kind of white balance this so I'm gonna use, inside the Develop module, instead of Lightroom, I'll go ahead and I'll use my eyedropper, which is kind of like my I don't really know what temperature this is, please help me tool. I'll select this and then I try to find something that's gray and if I can't find something that's gray, I'm gonna try to find something that's white. If I can't find something that's white, I'm gonna try to find white-ish. So I'm gonna select this and I'm gonna come over here and click. Oh, that got me a lot closer. And then once's that's done, I can come back in here and just add a little bit more tint to it. That's, that's it, right? It's like we're done here. But there are a couple of other things that I could do. Like, for example, I could come over to the Transform panel and inside of the Transform panel, hit it with Auto, so this straightened it up a little bit. Or try doing something with a little bit more vertical or try doing a guided transformation, where I go, alright, well this guy needs to be straight, please, and this guy needs to be straight please. That's okay. Maybe rotate it a little bit. And then what I'll do is I'll just take this and I'll bring this in here and here. From there, I'll turn around and go, alright, bring it into Silver Efex, bring it into Photoshop, add some adjustments and rinse and repeat. I'm not really all that freaked out about cutting off these sections. People tend to get a little over concerned about how much you crop. Like if this is the most important portion of the picture, right here, then I'll crop that, right? I'm a big fan of shooting crops at around 16 by nine because I tend to think that they look a little bit more cinematic. Oh, here's a quick tip! I'm gonna Shift Tab, get rid of all of my panels. I'm gonna hit L-L, dims it to 80, 90 percent. Dims it to a hundred percent. I get rid of everything because I think it helps me inform how I want to crop a lot better by not seeing anything. Alright? Crop your pictures. If there's something that's inside the picture that's not adding to the picture, it's taking away from the picture. If somebody turns around and goes, but you just cropped 75 percent of the picture, the picture's gonna be this big! I usually tell them, have you ever seen the Mona Lisa? Alright? If you go to the Louvre, in Paris, and you go see the Mona Lisa, it is the most anticlimactic thing that you can ever see. Because you think of the Mona Lisa as, like, (gasps) Like it's big, right? But the Mona Lisa is actually about yay big. And you go and you show up and you stare at it, and you're like, that's it? I came all the way over here for this? I mean, it's pretty but it's this big, alright? So don't let size, if you want to actually freak people out, the best thing for you to do is just print something really small and watch art at its finest. Take that same thing and just print the biggest mat that you could possibly find. Like make the mat like five inches wide in each section, and make the picture this big. And people will be like, wow. That must be art! Look at the size of that matte! (crowd laughs) Like, so. I'm gonna do one more and then we can go from here. I'm gonna right-click, I'm gonna Export to Photomatix Pro. I'm gonna export from here. So this was a series that I did inside of an abandoned church in Gary, Indiana. Home of Michael Jackson and this abandoned church. So, I'm gonna grab this one file. I'll go ahead and I'll select Okay, here from this list. And that's pretty much it, alright? It's using the last settings that I had from here. So notice that the preset is junk. There's really not that much that I change from it. I select Finish, from inside of here, I'm gonna Save and I'm gonna Reimport that one file. That file is gonna get reimported into this list. And I'm gonna come over here, I'm gonna grab these two files together. I'm gonna Edit In, and I'm gonna open them as layers inside of Photoshop. Now, I'm gonna grab this individual there. I'm gonna hide it with a mask, and I'm gonna brush it back in so that I get some of that sky back into that one shot. I'm gonna merge up. I'm going to use- oh, actually before I merge up, I'm gonna use some dodging, some burning, some coloring. You get some of this, you get some of this, you get some of this over here. You get some of this over here, you get some of this over here. Once that's done, I'm gonna do the merge up. Filter, Nik Collection, Color Efex Pro four. There's the glamor glow, maybe a little bit more warmth because I thought that the warmth was kind of cool. I'm gonna click Okay. It's gonna process all of that information and it's gonna push all of that information out. That point with the entire thing is it is actually more important that you have good understanding of how to be able to set your camera, ooh and for God's sake, I would just go back to this camera just one more time because there's one more thing that I do want you to understand before you go anywhere. Once you are finished shooting HDRs, (crowd laughs) for the love of God, go back to the bracket button that's sitting here, right? And you see where it's set to nine frames? Switch it back to zero. You will go out to the next shoot and you'll start taking a look at the file, and you're like, what is going on? Why are my pictures are all messed up? More often than not, it's because you left it on the bracket. These techniques are very easy to be able to follow. If you want to see any more of this stuff, you can follow me on the social stuff, we'll let her talk about most of this stuff. But the goal is not the technique. The techniques are actually very easy. It's what you do with that technique that is going to be infinitely more important. So I give them all to you. Please go out and make great pictures. Thank you very much.

Class Description

Have you ever taken a shot of an extraordinary scene but were disappointed by how the pictures turned out? Welcome to the club! Oftentimes, our cameras simply can’t capture the glorious range of light and shadow that we see in real life. Fortunately, we have High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography to fix that. HDR is a post-processing technique that allows you to combine two or more photos taken at different levels of exposure to achieve a single image with stunning luminosity and richer shadows. While it’s commonly used to correct washed-out or overly dark photos, it can also be used to create wonderfully artistic, impressionistic scenes. RC Concepcion, author of the bestselling “The HDR Book,” will go over camera capture techniques, processing tips and tricks, and how to use software to create amazing images.