Tag: HDR

The new HDR book

 (Pete Carr)

I spent a good part of this year writing a new HDR tutorial book. We looked at the first book and threw out everything that was wrong. I was a different photographer when I wrote the 1st edition. I would HDR anything. After all that’s what the cool kids did. I don’t believe in that any more. In some ways I feel like this book is me trying to make up for the silly mistakes I made with the first.

These days I simply use HDR to extend the dynamic range of my camera. If I’m out and I don’t have filters then I’ll use HDR. There are also times when filters may not work all that well, so I’ll use HDR. What I won’t do is HDR a single RAW any more. I don’t believe in doing that. Lightroom and Photoshop have enough features in them to get all the detail I want from a single RAW, when I need it. I also don’t like the cliched HDR tone mapped look. So with this book I’ve tried my best to avoid it. HDR doesn’t have to be high contrast, richly saturated monsters. It can be simple and elegant if you want.

Almost every HDR in the book is from multiple exposures. There’s a lot of new photos in the book that have been produced for it. We try to show the original exposure out of the camera to demonstrate why we felt HDR was needed. After we try to show the tone mapped image from Photomatix before processing. This is important because people only ever see the final result. What they see is what they think HDR is. It’s not. It’s a process so we try to show that.

We’ve dumped the street photography and moved portraits to a smaller section of the book. This book focuses on landscapes, interiors, buildings, cityscapes, and other random little things. Below are some examples of the photography in the book. If you want to learn more you can buy it from Amazon USA now or Amazon UK soon.

 (Pete Carr)
 (Pete Carr/Peter Carr)
 (Pete Carr)
 (Pete Carr)
 (Pete Carr)
 (Pete Carr)
 (Pete Carr/Peter Carr)

The modern waterfront

Above, 1st Nov 2011. The modern Liverpool waterfront with the Museum of Liverpool on the left, the 3 Graces in the middle and the new black granite buildings at Mann Island on the right. Things sure have changed.

 (Pete Carr/Peter Carr)

8th Dec 2006.

S2000

I like to think I’ve grown a bit over the years and updating the HDR guide book has really proven to me that I have. Five years ago I did this photo of my mates Honda S2000. I threw contrast and heavy vignetting at an already over-processed tone mapped image. It was so cool! … I look back on that image today and see a list of faults. The image above is an updated version with those faults corrected. I’m assuming that in another 5 years I’ll look back and hate this version too.

The old view over Canning Dock

12th September, 2006. Remember this view? The old Walk the Plank ship, now gone. A great view of the Liver Building and the Port of Liverpool building with a clear view out to sunset. Its all so different now.

This is a HDR from 3 bracketed exposures on my old Canon 30D. It’s featured in the new HDR book I’m writing which is now available for pre-order on Amazon. While its similar to one featured in the first edition it isn’t as processed and a little more restrained. Every HDR I’ve done for the book has been bracketed instead of single RAW conversions. This is the main reason why HDR exists and we focus on its advantages instead of throwing it at every photo just because you can.