Digital Photography Techniques

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How to Smooth Rough Spots in HDR Images

Artifacts can appear in tone mapped high dynamic range (HDR) images that are the result of movement in the scene. Rough spots (as seen in this figure) happen in tone mapping when you have motion that oscillates [more…]

How to Publish Your HDR Images

Publishing or printing your high dynamic range (HDR) photographs is the final step in the HDR process. Snap on your chinstrap, fire up Photoshop Elements, and get going: [more…]

HDR Photography Tips: Be Patient

Photo shoots are often exciting, especially when you're shooting high dynamic range images. The scenery is beautiful, and you’re pumped to get good shots. It’s easy to be swept up by the fun and start [more…]

HDR Photography Tips: Pay Attention to Light

As you traipse around looking for good HDR shots, you will undoubtedly run into the same phenomena regarding light and time that photographers everywhere have come to recognize: [more…]

HDR Photography Tips: Know Your Camera

Today’s brands of cameras rely extensively on auto this and auto that. For HDR photography, one of the consequences of this is that many amateur photographers don’t learn how to use their cameras like [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Overreacting to Criticism

The bottom line when processing your high dynamic range photos is this: Your HDR images are yours. Ultimately, what you create should appeal to you on some level. Start there. Be comfortable with that [more…]

HDR Photography Tips: Compose Shots with a Purpose

Try this simple rule when composing a scene for an HDR photograph. It will have a profound impact on how you compose it. Take a picture of something. Not anything. Not nothing. Take it of a thing you can [more…]

HDR Photography Tips: Love What You Do

Here are three helpful hints and reminders for helping you get better at HDR photography, and a couple showcase images to help steer you in the right direction. There are certainly more ways to shoot better [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Halos and Ghosts

The number one way to ruin a good HDR image is the dreaded halo, and the second is ghosting artifacts. Your photos might be perfect, but they don’t need halos to prove it. The figure illustrates a nice [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Lack of Imagination

Imagination is a powerful thing when preparing HDR images, a fact that is made more obvious when you see the result of not using it versus using it. The top image in this figure is an HDR image of a local [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Sharpening

If you get caught up in perfection, you’re primed to over-sharpen your HDR images. Photographers are sometimes obsessed with sharpness in their photos. They want everything to be pixelly perfectly sharp [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Nothing is Working

When you run into a situation with your high dynamic range photographs and it seems like nothing you do is working — the settings don’t look good, the image feels wrong, the effects are all bad — relax [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Weak Coloring and Contrast

In general, bold, contrasting color is interesting to look at in HDR images. It’s powerful and striking. It reaches out, grabs you, and pulls you toward it. It gets your attention. [more…]

HDR Troubleshooting: Too Much HDR

Sometimes too much of a good thing (HDR processing) can be a bad thing. Sometimes when people first start working with HDR, they generate HDR images and then tone map it with the most absurdly unrealistic [more…]

Cross-Process a Black-and-White HDR Image in Photoshop

When colorizing (often called tinting or toning) a black-and-white high dynamic range (HDR) image, you may choose to cross-process the image. Cross-processing [more…]

Why Convert HDR Photos to Black and White

A lot of people wonder why on earth you would want to convert a high dynamic range (HDR) image to black and white. In general, you should convert an HDR photo to black and white for the same reasons you [more…]

Emphasize Contrast and Tone in Black-and-White HDR Photos

High dynamic range (HDR) photography excels at emphasizing contrast — and not just in color but in black and white, too. Black-and-white photos are beautiful studies in contrast. With color removed from [more…]

Solve HDR Color Problems with Black and White

Sometimes color high dynamic range (HDR) photos just don’t look good. For whatever reason, this photo, a single-exposure HDR image, is such a case. The color version, as you can see, just isn’t that interesting [more…]

When to Convert HDR to Black and White

One option to create black-and-white high dynamic range (HDR) images is to convert your color photos to black and white before using them to generate the HDR image. You have two options to choose from [more…]

Convert HDR Raw Images to Black and White

If you convert your high dynamic range (HDR) images during Raw conversion, you must shoot your images and brackets in Raw and be prepared to convert them to black and white in your favorite Raw converter [more…]

Convert Tone Mapped HDR to Black and White

There are a number of methods to convert a color, tone mapped high dynamic range (HDR) image to black and white after the HDR process. Use your favorite image editor [more…]

Convert HDR to Black and White in Elements

If you want to convert your high dynamic range (HDR) images to black and white, Photoshop Elements has a handy Convert to Black and White feature that gives you some creative control over the process. [more…]

Convert HDR to Grayscale with a Gradient Map

Most people don’t think of using gradient maps to convert high dynamic range (HDR) images to black and white (also known as grayscale), but the results are very good. A gradient map is nothing more than [more…]

Convert HDR to Black and White in Photoshop

Photoshop has a very powerful tool to convert color high dynamic range (HDR) images to black and white. It gives you a significant degree of control over how the final image looks. You can turn blue skies [more…]

Black-and-White HDR: Colorize with Elements Color Variations Tool

One option for colorizing black-and-white high dynamic range (HDR) images in Photoshop Elements is to use the Color Variations tool. Several controls are available here with which you can increase or decrease [more…]

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