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Processing HDR Photography

Lesson 4 of 7

Moving HDR from Lightroom to Photoshop

Rafael "RC" Concepcion

Processing HDR Photography

Rafael "RC" Concepcion

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Lesson Info

4. Moving HDR from Lightroom to Photoshop

Lesson Info

Moving HDR from Lightroom to Photoshop

Now, this is not a very good HDR picture. As a matter of fact it probably shouldn't be an HDR picture at all, but what I do want to do is I want to show you this for a couple of different things you should keep in mind when you are processing HDR. Inside of Lightroom we have a brackets series of stuff that I want to work with and I am gonna right click and from inside of here you have a section called Photo Merge. Under Photo Merge I am going to select HDR from the list. There are a couple of different things that you should keep in mind when you are working with HDR. You figure from one point to another point as you make one picture to another picture this could be here and then all of a sudden you could pick up this one on this side but what you'll do is you'll hit the camera and as you are going from one frame to another frame this will happen to the camera. Boop. Just ever so slightly, ever so slightly it just turns around goes just goes from one side to the other side. Those frame...

s are not going to be able to match so when your camera messes up because you kicked it or because the wind kicked it or something happened, that is an alignment problem. That's what this helps you with Auto Align. When your subject moves your camera is rock steady but your subject moves in front of you that is called a ghost. So subject moves it's a ghost camera moves it's an alignment problem. Inside of here you'll notice that you have an option called Deghost. Now, what would move here? It's not like the building is going to be like... (whistling) And move from one side to the other side but the trees will so I usually think that any kind of natural elements right: water, fire, smoke, people. Those things will move from one point to another point and cause a problem. Your tripod causes an alignment problem so in this case how much deghosting do you want? There's no deghosting, you'll see a little bit of blur in some of these sections. If you put in a little bit more of deghosting it will go through and it will try to eliminate some of that stuff and create something that's a little bit sharper for your preview which I think is a good thing. Once we do that then we can go ahead and click on Merge. I am not gonna merge it because I don't think that this necessarily needs it, but it is a good way for us to be able to talk about what the process of it is. You really don't want to move your camera when you're doing this kind of stuff, but should you do that, the ghosting and alignment will help you mitigate some of those problems. From there let's go ahead and just talk a little bit about I am going to cancel this out here and let's go to this one. I am going to single click on this one file here and show you what I have. I love this part, right here, this looks great because any time that there's light inside of a section, you know it's going to blow out. So I like what that looks like but then as you get on like here in this one spot, this is gone. Not good. So what I am going to do is I am going to grab this. I am going to go to the Develop Module and I am going to show you one thing. If I make this exposure plus five, minus five. Can't get it quite dark enough. Can't get it quite bright enough. There's a limit to what I can do there. Okay, that's fine. I am going to double click. Anytime that you work with any of these sliders inside of Lightroom and they're all kind of jacked up like that what you could do is you could always just double click on the sliders and then double clicking on the sliders will bring them all right back to whatever it is that you need. So just a quick tip. Inside of here I am going to grab this picture I am going to shift click the last of these inside of this series and I am going to right click I am going to go to Photo Merge and from here I am going to select HDR. Once I do that, I am going to click. It's going to be one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, now it's going to just turn around and just mock me, ten. That's not bad these are thirty-six mega pixel images. This is the one thing that I think that is pretty cool about this. What they've done inside of Lightroom, in the Lightroom side of things, is they said we're going to take these pictures and we're going process small thumbnails of this picture and we're going to merge these things and make them (snapping) pretty quickly and then as you're making these decisions it's starting to be able to kick some of that process up in the back, so it's processing and working and processing and working as you're deciding whatever it is that you want to do here. Now, I knew that I had a tripod set, I knew that I didn't kick it, so I didn't expect anything to get too messed up here. So what I am going to do is I am going to select Merge from this list. Once I do that it is going to grab all of this information probably one of the other things that I like about how Lightroom does this is that it processes all of this information and still keeps it as a raw file which I think is really cool because it takes the sandwich, makes the sandwich, smushes the sandwich and still keeps it raw. Here is the finished product. Right? She doesn't look like a lot but she's a keeper. Take my exposure slider. Plus ten. Minus ten. That's a ton of information that you can use to use as recovery, the amount of stuff that you can pull out of this file is pretty crazy. Now, we can just do some quick toning it's a little green so I am going to grab my temperature here. Look, under white balance all of your white balance options are still available to you which wasn't necessarily the case before when you processed HDR. Previous to this kind of stuff, what it would do is it would make a TIFF image, it would smush all of that stuff together but you were working with pixelated images pixelated data so you couldn't go back and adjust things like white balance. Like now, I can go inside of here and like really tint this and play with this and get it kind of get it exactly where I would want. That's got a lot more data across that range and I could go back in and I could selectively push and pull and manipulate and it has a very realistic feel to it. You've done a great job of putting all of that stuff together and making it be realistic. Now, I want to show you something else because I know that there will be people inside of here that will not be doing this from a Lightroom point of view. So I am going to grab all of these guys and I am going to drag these guys inside of Photoshop. So I am just going to drag all of the raw images and I am put all of the raw images inside of Photoshop so we can see them and you'll see on the left hand side that's where all the images are. Alright. Not the most discoverable of features in this area so it's important to point out if you are not a user of Lightroom and you are doing this from a Photoshop side you would have to come over here and select all of the files that you have inside of the film strip. This is open inside of Camera Raw right now. Now, from here I am going to click on this hamburger icon. When you click on this there's Merge to HDR. You click on Merge to HDR and now it's going to grab all of that information, it's going to push all of that information together and now you see the same options here. Once you do that it will spit out a DNG file as well that you can use, so. I think it's a little easier inside of Lightroom than it is inside of Photoshop, but that's because I am managing most of the stuff that I am doing inside of Lightroom. Oh! While we're here. Probably not the class to do it, but I am going to do it anyway. Let me see if I have the file because there is another one in there. Take a look at this. One. Two. One. Two. Alright. One. Two. Alright. Big files this is Guanajuato, Mexico. I didn't want to leave this open, if you look inside of here and you do a right click and you go to Photo Merge there's HDR, but there is also Panorama. Right. So if you ever wanted to just grab stuff you can grab a series of files that you put together in a panorama. One. Two. Three. Done. Pretty fast and then from here you can use things like Boundary Warp to be able to take those images you see how there's like a whole bunch of white space, you can just grab the Boundary Warp slider and drag it out and it will distort the white spaces until you can get something that's really neat. For what it's worth, and the good part about it is that if you click okay here it's going to turn this also into a raw file. You still have temperature controls and tint controls and things like that. So, it's a good thing to know. One of the other things that I think is pretty cool about processing HDRs inside of Photoshop or inside of Lightroom is that you have the ability to be able to also do this what's called Headlessly or in Headless mode. When we took a look at these options here right if you look there's a really dark area, you don't see anything in the cave, but as you start bringing this out there's a lot of detail right here that we've lost inside of here so I'd like to pull some of that information out. Now look, there's all of this, do I really need these last two? Probably not. So what I am going to do is I am just going to stop at around here, just forget about the other two, it's okay. Nobody's going to take your birthday, just you're done. Right-click, go to Photo Merge, and there's HDR from the list. Now, we know that when we click on HDR it's going to pop-up something, it's going to show us the ghost thing and the alignment and things like that, but what if you're okay with every time that it does it you don't need to see that again. Right-click, go to the HDR. But before you hit HDR hit the shift key. By hitting the shift key what you're going to do is you're going to move this to something called Headless mode and what it does is, it cuts the head off that thing that it sees, that dialogue box goes away. You click on this, you'll see that the task goes into the background, but the good part about it is that you can go through and continue to work and take a look at all of the files. Rank. Sort. Pick. Develop. Do whatever it is. If you are running this on an actual HDR program you'd have to wait for all of that stuff to be done. Now, you can continue to work and not have a problem. Those are really small icons of things that you guys can get as part of the download so they're just there.

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.

Adobe Lightroom Classic CC, Adobe Photoshop CC 2018

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

HDR Example Files

E-Book Download

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Mark Koller

RC is a great teacher and story teller. There'r not a lot of value and little to be learned however RC makes it fun and for that the class is worth the cost.