July 26, 2015 – HDR News is back. We’re been busy working on some software updates and getting out there ourselves to shoot in this beautiful summer weather. It’s travel time and we hope your summer shooting is inspiring! As always you can read HDR News on the web with photos at http://wp.pinnacleimagingsystems.com.
THE HDR PANORAMA STORY
One of the spectacular honorable mention winners in the 2015 HDR Contest was an HDR panorama by William Flynn. Combining HDR and stitching multiple images to create a stunning wide image requires technical knowledge and perseverance. William has both and was helped along with HDR Express 3 software. You can see William’s image on the contest summary website: http://unifiedcolor.com/photo-contest-2015-results-page-1. Here’s Williams account of his process.
The making of the “Salt River Cliffs Panorama
The image began as 30 individual photos. A Nikon D300 was set in portrait orientation on my tripod directly across the river from the central portion of the cliffs. The camera was panned to the far right of the scene and a 5-image burst was taken with 2/3rds f-stop bracketing (1-1/3rd f-stops over, 2/3rds over, proper exposure, 2/3rds under and 1-1/3rd under exposed.
The pan was then turned left (maintaining a level orientation) and 5 more shots were taken. This process was repeated 6 times ensuring that some overlap occurred in all of the images. Each of the 5-shot brackets was processed in HDR Express and saved as a TIFF file. On average each of these TIFF’s was about 72 Mbytes in size.
Using the photo-merge script in Photoshop, the 6 images were aligned and merged into a single panoramic image that was more than 350Mbytes in size. After cropping and applying the usual set of Photoshop tweaks and adjustments I use on most of my images, the final file was saved as a 311.5 Mbyte TIFF with a native size, as listed in Photoshop, of 32inches horizontal by 14.3 in vertical at 300dpi.
I was really pleased at how quickly HDR Express processed each of the 5 Nikon RAW files into an HDR image and how easy it was to use its adjustment controls to wind up with exactly the look I wanted – as dramatic as the scene actually was, but not artificial. As always, in photography, the proof is in the final image.
More than half the summer remains and the visually awesome fall season approaches. It’s the time to pack the gear and get deep into our photography. You can always make great photographs in your home area but you know that the inspiration that comes from a trip to a new location is a creative boost. Need a little push? Here’s a great article where top photographers share their favorite locations around the world. http://www.phototraces.com/photo-location-guide/top-travel-photographers-reveal-their-favorite-photo-locations-around-the-world/
A nasty travel mishap that happens all the time is lost luggage. If you’re a pro photographer losing a piece of luggage with $10,000 to $20,000 of equipment is serious business. It’s no less traumatic for the photo enthusiast to have the airlines mis-handle their precious gear either. Here are three useful articles by pro photographers on how they limit their exposure to the air travel system.
“Airline Travel Tips For Photographers” by pro wedding photographer Matthew Saville gets detailed about your equipment bag strategy: http://www.slrlounge.com/airline-travel-tips-for-photographers/
“Traveling As A Photographer: Packing & Flying with Camera Gear” by pro music show shooter Todd Owyoung gets into specific bag choices: http://www.ishootshows.com/2015/01/20/traveling-photographer-packing-flying-camera-gear/
“Flying Your Photography Gear Using a Media Rate” is an interesting piece on a little known flat-rate for members of the media, photographers and film makers: https://fstoppers.com/business/flying-your-photography-gear-using-media-rate-60137
The international photography contest, The iPhone Photography Awards, that promotes mobile photography has announced the winners of its eighth annual competition. Catch the winners and commentary on Time magazine’s online site at: http://time.com/3919216/iphone-photography-awards-winners-revealed/
THE SUMMER COVERS OF LIFE MAGAZINE
We never get tired of looking back at the golden age of photography. It was a time when the primary outlet for great photographs were the glossy magazines like Life, Look, Time, The Saturday Evening Post and even Vogue. What better time than mid summer to take a look at Life’s Magazine’s 35 Best Summer Covers: http://time.com/3901874/life-magazine-summer-covers/