In this blog I have often written of color balance, vital both in Astrophotography both in nature photography and just from this I drew the inspiration to write this post.
The rush to publish your processed images not check visually that the color balance is correct, for example by making under artificial lights of home at night, or via a monitor of an old laptop no longer reliable; I myself try to avoid these errors but sometimes being wrong is inevitable.
I recently watched a my “old” naturalistic shooting, dating back to April 2016 that I propose as an example here, it presents a wrong color balance, showing an obvious unnatural dominant on cool colors.
I then wrote this post but also created a Tutorial to learn more and I hope to teach something useful.
I’d want to analyze an old process an HDR photography in my first attempt, made way back in 2006 in Padua, as you can see here on the left shows one of the statues in the main square of this town, and despite its limitations, it highlights the potential of this technique, providing both the detail of the statue in the shade is the surrounding landscape but with all the limitations of the “first experiment HDR”, this is not exactly a great execution and further into post will explain why, like all first-time experiences, fascinated by this technique which was still unknown.
Since then, in cameras and even the same smartphone, the HDR was introduced as “built-in” or is present as an automatic function during shooting, but with various limits: on-camera Canon DSLRs these limits make it ineffective (the aperture locked at full aperture for example) while the limitations of smartphones HDR are a result of both the “micro optics” built into the phone is the number of megapixels often interpolated, not to mention that for both cases under consideration (DSLR or smartphone), you cannot act on the development of the final image and produce a “JPG” rather than an uncompressed image (given the rise of detail that produces and for which he became famous HDR JPG compression, with many of these details is not), makes the use of this function is ineffective to produce a good HDR and this is why I suggest to all the manual approach to this technique
In addition to these observations, it must be said that the use of the technique, unvarnished without too many automated ways of shaping lenses/focal or even adding neutral density filters or effects, expands the uses, creativity and fun to the more experienced photographer.
Personally after years shots processed and developed a familiarity I feel able to teach it, hoping to help those who want to experiment with this technique, trying to direct it at its best, to avoid the classic rookie mistakes and helping him to have a good depth of field while maintaining the naturalness of photography and applying the correct light.
We must say that when it comes to processing may be misinterpreted by the term “Photoshopping” an image or retouch the image saturation and contrast to make it more spectacular or just lighten it, darken or increase clarity via software, for those who are passionate about digital photography and knows the innumerable techniques, it is now known that the HDR uses at least three shots, better in RAW format but especially taking different, varying to EV, or Stop, the times but also the aperture, and then saved to your computer and “United States” via software with all the details of the three photographs taken in a single image (as in the astrophotography “stacking” and, moreover, as you know from our video tutorials, hdr itself is applied in processing of astronomical photographs).
Let’s start by saying that HDR is the acronym for High Dynamic Range, literally a wide range dynamic, toni, for what the definition of TT-HDR (True Tones) which is also the title of this article, i.e. to distinguish the intentionally surreal for “artistic license” that without detracting from the creativity, not hdr photography nor is tt-albeit many times are beautiful artistic representations like a painting, and sometimes the photo editing skills can even mislead and then swap the reality with fantasy (for example at random: a pink sky deliberately and surreal, a plane at that time ago an evolution not far we, the milky way that stands out on a landscape, when in fact maybe it was cloudy). And it should also be mentioned as in anything, certainly not just the mere use of the technique, because the ability to manage all parameters in processing, but also before, the ability to choose the right parameters of shooting multiple shots, so that the pictures are not too dark, or too overexposed, or too noisy, and not least the framing or framing and the ability to seize the moment contributing to the result it produces the image in TT-HDR realistic, as natural as possible, and with details and superior tone, almost like being present during the shot and saw it and lived it with their own eyes.
To have many more good examples of True Tones HDR was created by several years the Group little man on the Flickr community, accessible at the link that I propose:
Defined these notions we can continue starting in pointing out the mistakes in my first HDR shot earlier proposed, my first HDR shot, and in the next picture you will find marked with red arrows and the blue one the two most common errors due to incorrect calibration of the “trigger”, IE the settings of the software but also the settings on target while shooting needed to produce an image TT-HDR.
We start with the blue arrow, in this case the error is double, diaphragm too open, there is the presence of spike on the Sun due to the closure of the diaphragm, which allows you to “diminish” the area overexposed photographed; the result is a “ball” overexposed.
The Red arrows indicated in various parts of the image are to indicate the boundaries of photography where the intensity of HDR and using the trigger on the calibration of Light affect. When the intensity is too high you generate these lighter areas that make the picture. Other than that, probably an incorrect color balance and/or an excessive saturation (green), the presence of a large flare (lack of Hood, optical deficiencies, use of a skylight filter on the lens to snap back lit) make it imperfect.
Refining the technique the experience over the years, meanwhile the processing software have become more complex, but complete, increasing the triggers that can work;
Since my first HDR shot I chose as the processing software, perhaps the first released and the most famous, “Photomatix”, now appears not only as a “stand alone” program even as Photoshop plugin. Over the years I have had the opportunity to try other software but by habit that I am, I have continued to use the same, noting each new release, improved features to process your HDR shots.
For scaticare a demo or purchase it here is a link: http://www.hdrsoft.com/it/
Going back to what we said before, and the reasons that have inspired me to post this in the Tutorial and in the Video Tutorials below and complete this post, I will explore three tt-image hdr, to give you a foretaste of what I teach, I show you a view on individual shots as come out of the camera, we will set an example in the Tutorial that I then processed the final HDR , a shot at the seaside in Corsica, and one in the high mountains, the Alps, and one between the woods of Sassello, in Liguria in different light conditions.
And to clarify the alterations of scenery that would lead us astray in drawing one shot HDR in true tones, an example of the possible errors that can damage the image, taking in as one of the images presented, the mountainous landscape:
- The color balance, because you simply forgot the wrong color balance setting on your camera, for example: in tungsten lights rather than natural or auto white balance, these are raw shots before working on the color balance, you can compare them with those earlier proposed:
- The overexposure, or burnt spots from excessive light, as in general photography should be avoided, for example:
- Excessive intensity of HDR and incorrect adjustment of illumination leads to a more dramatic/dark even surreal that not fits with the idea of nature photography in true tones
We are looking after this post, just missing over see the three images tt-hdr finished with all the fixes, calibrations and improvements applied and published on our profile of 500px:
I would say that it’s all:) these are critical to avoid blunders, I hope I have helped at least a little to achieve realistic and natural beautiful HDR processing and I invite you to follow the tutorial that addresses fully processing both shots before, the full tutorial is ready, in English and Italian on this blog and to get the password you must become our supporter on patreon for at least 1 dollar a month.
Tutorial: Develop into True Tones HDR with Photomatix (win/mac software)