OK, so I’ve been playing with the best of the best HDR software, for those of who don’t know what that means, it’s High Dynamic Range photography. I’ll give you an example below of what you can do with this software. The problem has long been, the camera cannot capture all the data in a high contrast photograph. However, the eye adjusts for these wide ranges in tones and detail and we sometimes don’t realize how contrasty the image really is. So this is where the problem begins. Have you every gone to a beautiful scenic location, taken some great shots and you can’t wait to see how they look. You used all of your photographic skills and techniques, you come home, upload to the computer and think this is not how it looked to you. Some areas of the photo look washed out, some areas too dark and some just right…hmmm I’m sounding like a nursery rhyme..sorry. These wonderful programs will fix that silly little problem and help you create a stunning and breathtaking image. The three programs I used in my test are Photomatix Pro 3.2, FDR and Adobe Photoshop. These programs all allow a free trial download, however they will insert a watermark on the image you created until you purchase and register the program. But, It’ll give you a good idea which one works best for you. All three have their pros and cons. It’ll probably boil down to a matter of opinion which program you choose. Out of the three, I think photomatix’s control panel is the most user friendly. When comparing the processed images, I like the image that the FDR software produced the most. Looking at the three images, I think photoshop lags behind the other two. However, Photoshop rocks in every other way!
So, if your looking for a new and fresh look give these programs a try. There inexpensive and you can simply download and start working right away. You will need to change the way you shoot and bracket at least 3 images @ -2, 0, +2 to get started, most cameras have a setting for this. Use a tripod for the best images and your all set.
Here are my results of the images shot of the Chittenango Falls in the Central New York State region.
First you’ll see the 3 raw images shot @2 stop increments ( the standard), then the images processed by the HDR software.