Friday, June 8, 2012

HDR Starter Recipe

Ever hear of a "dough starter" for bread maker recipe? That's what I want to offer you with this post. I know when I first began dabbling in High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography, I didn't know which way was up. After sifting, tweaking, clicking, and saving, I discovered that I was using the same starter method with a majority of my HDR images. So what I thought would be helpful to others, is to share what I find to be a great "base" or foundation to start with. Like breads and other recipes, there are several out there. This is one that works for me. Below I have my "Foundation HDR WorkFlow". In it I have included links to all of the tools/software that I use as well. Enjoy!
High Country Olive Oil - Aiken, SC.
Foundation WorkFlow Example
(HDR Image of High Country Olive Oils located in Aiken, SC.) 
My Foundation HDR WorkFlow aka HDR Starter Recipe 

  1. Photomatix Pro Tone-map 3 Exposures at -2, 0, +2. Save as an 8-bit tiff.
  2. Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 Open 8-bit tiff tone-mapped image and create a duplicate a layer.
  3. Topaz DeNoise (PSE10 Plug-in) Apply "Jpeg Strong" to reduce any noise/grainy appearance.
  4. Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 Duplicate the DeNoise layer.
  5. Topaz Adjust 5  (PSE10 Plug-in) Depending on the image & look I want, I apply this plug-in.
  6. Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 Create a blank layer and add my watermark.
  7. I then save it as a .psd to play with later, or a jpeg (medium size) to upload to the web.

Hope this helps some of you! If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

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