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Create HDR Images in Photoshop Elements 8

Photoshop Elements 8 has joined the ranks of HDR-capable applications. Elements' high dynamic range photograph feature is not that powerful — it’s basically exposure blending with a little tone mapping thrown in. Nevertheless, anything that accepts bracketed exposures isn’t all that bad.

Regardless of what mode you want to use, you start out the same way:

  1. Open the bracketed images.

    First you have to place the bracketed images in the Project Bin at the bottom of the screen. Do this by opening them (not using the Elements Organizer). They can be Raw (in which case you’ll be presented with the Adobe Camera Raw interface), TIFF, or JPEG.

  2. Select the images.


    Select from 2–10 images in the Project Bin. Ctrl+click (Windows) or Cmd+click (Mac) to select non-adjacent images. Select the first, and then Shift+click the last if they are adjacent in the bin, as shown in the figure.

  3. Choose File→New→Photomerge Exposure.

    This launches the HDR module and Photoshop Elements churns a bit while it prepares things.

    At this point, you’re ready to choose between pursuing Automatic and Manual modes. You can switch back and forth between the two modes easily by selecting the tab with the appropriate name. In addition, you can click the Reset button to start over, the Done button to finish and apply the settings, or the Cancel button to abort the process.

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