We have all seen it, sometimes not sure if it is a photograph or an illustration, but always having a strong reaction one way or another. I am, of course, speaking of High Dynamic Range photography or HDR.
This technique is typically accomplished by shooting multiple bracketed exposures of the same shot and blending them together - known as tone mapping them back down to a single image. This technique allows us to capture detail in the deepest of shadows and the brightest of highlights.
This post could go a whole different route and simply talk about the debate within the photo community about the merits of HDR vs. photo realism. For the record, I support any level of post processing, manipulation, or use of any tool for an artist to convey their message in an image. It is really that simple. See there, you almost got me going and this isn't my point for this post.
The majority of HDR shots we see are usually of beautiful landscapes. You know them when you see it and in the hands of a skilled artist, they are amazing. But what many photographers don’t often think about is that the technique is also sweet for interiors.
Interior shots can be very challenging. Between shadows, bright windows and overall poor lighting conditions for photography - it can be hard to capture anything that has a chance to ever make it off your memory card. Sure, if you have the equipment, skill and time you could artificially light it. Maybe Joe McNally will even stop by and help out.
But if not, try a simple 3 exposure HDR shot, you might be amazed. You may need to be less heavy handed during the tone mapping as you might process for a landscape. Or maybe not, whatever works for you. Remember, you're the boss.
For those who don’t know much about HDR and want to learn more, I suggest you go check out Trey Ratcliff over at his Stuck in Customs travel photography blog. He maintains an excellent HDR tutorial and shares some of his inspiring work. In fact, his new book “A World in HDR” made our Weekly Hot List.
Have a great day everyone!