The Reason

Interesting title, eh?  Well, this picture is ‘the reason’ that I enjoy shooting images with a High Dynamic Range.  This is not to blast people that don’t enjoy HDR or think it isn’t a pure form of photography, it is just a version of photography that I find very useful and enjoy and I shall explain why.  When I was setting up my shot in this barn, what initially caught my eye was the open door leading to the field of growing wheat.  However, I knew I wouldn’t be happy with just a framed shot of the field.  I hit my live view button, as I often do while composing my shots, and adjusted the scene to my liking.  I usually take a single exposure to make sure I am happy with the comp before I burn 12 exposures on  framing that I don’t like.  Well, on this single exposure, the first thing I noticed was that the barn was as black as night and the exposure for the field was spot on.  I knew this set up would have a very High Dynamic Range (HDR) between the shadows and shade inside the barn versus the sun-lit wheat field.  I wasn’t going to be happy with a silhouetted barn framing a field, nor a slightly blown out field to expose the wood detail inside the barn.

Enter HDR photography.  This shot was a combination of 7 different exposures from -3 to +3 on the ev scale.  I went through my normal steps of Photomatix Pro, PhotoTools 2.6 and then Photoshop (at some point I hope to make a tutorial of my workflow).  And this is what came out the other end.  I really, really enjoy creating pictures that recreate exactly what I was seeing standing in that barn.  When I was looking out on the field, I didn’t see a dark, black barn with no detail.  I could see all the cracks, knots and decay in the wood.  The same applies to the background while looking around inside the barn, the sky and green were bold and pure.  And that is the main reason, I like to explore and practice in the world of High Dynamic Range Photography.


12 responses

  1. I love that scrolling down the image reveals a great shot of a grassy fields and lovely blue sky. I love this shot man!

    June 2, 2011 at 9:52 am

  2. Nice framing Scotty – really dig the scene being revealed through the doorway.

    June 2, 2011 at 10:07 am

  3. I LOVE this shot Scott!I like the x above the door and the symmetry is great, but I especially love that view of the wide open plains. Great stuff dude.

    June 2, 2011 at 10:07 am

  4. Wonderful!

    June 2, 2011 at 10:08 am

  5. Perfect shot man! Love it!

    “The Reason” is also my fav song from a band [Cell 7] 🙂 So yes, good title.

    June 2, 2011 at 11:29 am

  6. Great points about HDR. Some people feel like you are using it to create something unrealistic when, in fact, HDR can make the photographs show what you really would see if you were standing right there. Great capture and explanation!

    June 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm

  7. Awesome image and a post to match!

    June 2, 2011 at 12:56 pm

  8. Gorgeous, gorgeous image, Scott! My kind of HDR! Absolutely love it.

    June 2, 2011 at 6:51 pm

  9. Great example of how useful HDR truly is to the photographer.

    June 2, 2011 at 6:53 pm

  10. Great shot! When it is done well, I dont think anyone will complain (well there are always some folks…). Very nicely processed and this scene benefited greatly from HDR!

    June 3, 2011 at 12:22 am

  11. Nicely controlled processing, and a great scene, too.

    June 3, 2011 at 6:11 am

  12. It does almost seem like two separate photos, but it is one, and your’e right that it could only be possible via HDR.

    June 3, 2011 at 10:47 am

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