"I Hate HDR" and "I Teach HDR the Right Way"

Natural-looking HDR image.

Want to have some fun? Do a web search on "I hate HDR." Tons of pages will come.

Here is something else about HDR (High Dynamic Range photography) that I found kinda funny. I once heard a photographer say, "I teach HDR the right way."

As my dad used to say, "To each his own." I say, "Why hate anything?" And, my take on teaching HDR - or creating HDR images - is that there is no "right way" and no "one way" to create HDR images.

It's all personal, like all art.

Some folks like realistic-looking HDR images, such as the image above, while others like super-saturated images with the grunge look, like the image below. Both images were taken on my workshops.

Super-saturated HDR image.

Super-saturated HDR image.

I don't teach HDR the right way, I simply teach it my way - which covers creating all types of HDR images.

The HDR program I recommend most is Photomatix from HDR soft. You can save 15% on Photomatix when you use this code - ricksammon - upon checkout from the HDR soft web site.

Here is post I did on the latest version of Photomatix.

One tip I do offer when it comes to HDR: The subject often suggests the HDR effect. For example, you probably want a natural-looking HDR image for a landscape, while the super-saturated/grunge effect may look good on a photo of an old car.

Magic Beach Motel, St. Augustine, FL.

Magic Beach Motel, St. Augustine, FL.

As with all your photography, I say follow your heart. Or as Ginger Baker wrote, "Do what you like."

South East Railway Museum near Atlanta, GA.

South East Railway Museum near Atlanta, GA.

If you want to get good at HDR, put yourself in a very high-contrast situation: shoot indoors and get details inside and outside. If you can see into the shadows and if your highlights are not blown out in your final HDR image, you are on your way to creating a good HDR image - your way. The image directly above illustrates that technique.

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Want to learn more about HDR? Check out my iPad app, Rick Sammon's iHDR, which is listed on My Apps page.

rick sammon.jpg

All the creative plug-ins that I use are listed on my Play & Save on Plug-ins page.

Explore the light,
Rick