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Old Aug 16, 2010, 4:14 AM   #1
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Default Is this HDR, or what did I do wrong?

Hello all,

I have been cycling 103km last weekend, and came across things I have not seen before. When I came across the shot below, I thought it would be a nice HDR attempt. I have read edufloyd (I hope I spelled the nick right) his small guide on how he does the HDR-ing. If I'm not wrong, this means that you put the ISO on 80, the F-stop between 4 and 8, and auto-bracketing on +1, and shoot a few so you have 5 photos finaly (after removing duplicates) ranging from -2 to +2.

I have brought those photos together in Photoshop HDR Merge, and after some trying and playing around, I have made the following, but I'm not sure how good it is, or if I did anything wrong. If anyone wants to give it a try as well with my 5 shots, I can create a link so you can download them.

Anyway, below here is my result If there's anything I can do to reduce size or so, please let me know (without losing quality). I only resized the image (keeping aspect ratio) so the width is 1024, and left the quality on 10 of 12.

Please let me know what you think of it, and what I could or should do to improve the shot in your opinion

PS. To make it easier to find the photos i created, I posted all 3 here. I think that it's lots easier to create nice HDR images with Photomatix, but maybe I'm doing something wrong in CS5. The colours of the Photomatix one look better in my opinion, the sky in particular, but maybe I have not yet discovered or used all CS5 options available.

#1 CS5 HDR Merge Pro using 5 photos

#2 Photomatix 3.2 Pro using 12 photos

#3 Another CS5 one using 12 photos

Last edited by Honnes; Aug 19, 2010 at 1:47 AM.
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Old Aug 17, 2010, 10:07 AM   #2
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I think it looks good. I'm no expert on HDR but there is no wrong or right way to do it.
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Old Aug 17, 2010, 2:46 PM   #3
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Thanks for your input rasterscan . I'll play around with it some more, and I guess you're right about the 'wrong or right' way, but there are some specifications before it's an actual HDR, and I hope I met those requirements
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Old Aug 17, 2010, 4:57 PM   #4
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I see some blue spots, which I believe are artifacts from bringing out the shaded area too much.

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Old Aug 17, 2010, 5:04 PM   #5
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i think for a correct HDR the sky should be blu and not like white...
this is the first exaple found searching in google

the example in this page show the difference of the sky
IMHO from what i know, the number of photos is not a must, at list 3

but in one of this you should get the sky saturated and with the right exposure and the opposite the ground saturated and with the right exposure

part of the job depends on the software you use, i know the theory but i'm learning the practice

some software give bad results other better ones
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 2:33 AM   #6
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Thanks for the input and advice

The sky was rather clear, and looking at the photos I took, I got 'white' sky-photos, and a few dark coloured ones. I'll play a bit more around, and will give Photomatix a try too, as I was using CS5's HDR Photo Merge Pro feature.

I generated the following, how does that look? Also, which I made a topic for in general, the exposure values my image details give me, CS5 detect, and Photomatix detect, all differ, which is rather strange.

The strength / detail is a bit reduced, and you can also see that the 'remove ghosts' feature of photoshop is a bit better, as the 'ghosts' are still visible on the Photomatix shot.

Last edited by Honnes; Aug 18, 2010 at 3:48 AM.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 8:10 AM   #7
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Hi Honnes! I really love your shot! To me #2 is far better than the first. Lots of details in shadows and no blown out sky. One thing I don't understand: Did you use Photomatix in #2 or CS5?
I already have both, Photomatix and CS5 and have to say that my favourite is Photomatix, it's a matter of tastes but I can get the results I want with CS5.
There is a new public beta version of Photomatix (beta 4) that has an awesome semi manual deghosting tool! this feature save me hours of work!! Also you have the chance to choose between tone mapping or exposure fusion (EF produce more natural hdrs) after the program merge the exp.
Here's the link: http://www.hdrsoft.com/download/beta/v40.html

Again love your shot mate!

Last edited by Edufloyd; Aug 18, 2010 at 8:13 AM.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 9:02 AM   #8
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Thanks for your kind words Edufloyd, when you like them, I must have done something right

For the first shot, I used CS5, and Shot 2, I used Photomatix. In CS5, I combined EV's of -2 to +2, but for some reason, CS5 says they are +0,32 +0,32 +0, +1, +2 ??? And in Photomatix, it detected yet again other values, so I took al 12 photos, and adjusted the EV Range (in Photomatix when asked), and put those together.

I used Photomatix Pro 3.2 by the way. It also has EF (Exposure Fusion) for more natural light they say, if you want, i can give that a try and post it here.

PS. I already created a topic in general to ask the "why's" for those EV and 'light bias' changes as I'm so confused about it.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 10:58 AM   #9
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The Photo Matrix shot is much better in my opinion: more detail, better shadows, and a realistic sky.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 11:34 AM   #10
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Definitely siding with all the folks here saying #2 is the better shot. The colors are much more lively, and the contrasts are nice and sharp. Wouldn't worry too much about the sky - I find my eyes are instantly drawn to the ground in your picture, and maintaining that nice saturated color there is more important.

Definitely have to say I like Photomatix Pro quite a bit for HDR and HDR-ish (which is more my style) work. You could probably do it all in Photoshop, but it's nice to have all the sliders and settings in one easy-to-monkey-with window.
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