Show us your HDR! Random HDR photo Thread.

Iconindustries

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As i've just got into HDR and I'm quite addicted. I am willing to pick up tips from other users and thought if we piled all our HRD into one thread it would be great for beginners like me to see how others produce their images.
So to begin with, this is my go with HDR of my brothers cubby house. I used 0.0 -2 and +2 and blended them together with Photomatix and performed a little tweaking. At first my exported image was very blurry after tonemapping but i found a selection when importing the images into Photmatix where you can select to remove noise. That did the trick and the exported image came out nice and sharp. I tried out Noise Ninja but found better results from the noise remover in Photomatix.

So, show us your HDR. We'd love to see it.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/50527022@N02/5944785059/" title="Cubby House HDR (Golden Hour) by iconindustries, on Flickr">View attachment 142226"1024" height="683" alt="Cubby House HDR (Golden Hour)"></a>
 

Herman

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Thanks for your HDR shot. I have just downloaded FDRTools Basic. When weather is improving next days I will set the G1 to bracketing and take a few shots.
I'm give a try anyhow.
 

David Stringer

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Heres some of my recent ones. The first is a 7 exposive autobracket the second 2 processed in photomatix as a single RAW file.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_stringer/4440111347/" title="PierHDR by Dave Stringer, on Flickr">
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"1024" height="677" alt="PierHDR" /></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_stringer/4440885202/" title="Arun HDR by Dave Stringer, on Flickr">
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"1024" height="790" alt="Arun HDR" /></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_stringer/4440110695/" title="LighthouseHDR by Dave Stringer, on Flickr">
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"1024" height="790" alt="LighthouseHDR" /></a>
 

cstevens

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I have recently had a play with HDR and I currently have 2 sets of HDR up on my website. I love doing them and have actually sold several large HDR prints to a local gallery.

For me, its a bit of a fad, nice to know how to do it for impact, but so far havent really used it to produce real world shots. When my wedding season kicks off more, I may try using it for dark church shots.

http://www.cm-photos.co.uk/events/power/

http://www.cm-photos.co.uk/events/hdr/

A few teasers though for you.

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bebrox

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Ben Cruachan near Oban Argyll Scotland

7 x autobracket exposures using 14-45mm on Panasonic G1;


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slau

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I find the bracketing feature of the G1/GH1 too limiting. It will be nice that we can have bracketing of at least + - 1EV instead of just 2/3 EV. The slow writing/processing speed make the job even harder. I usually go back to my Canon system for bracketing or HDR task.

Anyway, I use Photomatix Pro and seem to use the Lightroom Plug-in most of the time to generate the HDR images from my bracketed raw files. I am still trying to get my HDR images to look as 'natural' as possible. Here are few samples with my GH1:


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Amin Sabet

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Bill, some scenes contain a wide range of light, from very dark to very bright. Our vision is capable of seeing detail in both the shadows and the highlights, because our eyes and brain are constantly adjusting as we shift our vision from one part of the scene to another. However, such a scene may exceed the ability of a given lens-sensor unit on a camera to capture both shadow and highlight detail in a single exposure.

HDR is the process by which a person makes two or more different exposures, for example a long exposure to capture shadow detail and a short exposure to capture highlight detail, and combines them to make a single image containing detail in both the dark areas and the bright areas. In combining the component images to make a resulting image, one goes through a process called tonemapping, which refers to the assigning of tones, for example deciding how bright the captured shadows ought to be in the resulting image. It is this tonemapping which determines how "natural" the final result will be.

Tonemapping and HDR are sometimes used interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. Any time a person reassigns tones, for example by adjusting curves/contrast, one is tonemapping. HDR only refers to situations in which a person uses multiple exposures to capture a range of dark and bright which would otherwise exceed the ability of a camera-lens unit to capture in a single exposure. So HDR requires tonemapping, but tonemapping doesn't necessarily mean HDR.
 

BillN

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Thanks Amin

I've just been given a link by Alan Wolf showing a US$50 Mac bundle of 10 Apps - Hydra is included plus Parallel - may just give it a go

Cheers
 

Iconindustries

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Today I was working on an Excavator in the Millmerran Power Station grounds. I took a quick few snaps while the security officer wasn't' looking as i had lunch. Turned out beautifully in HDR. This is the boiler unit. Tomorrow i hope to get a snapshot of the Generator rooms.

As you can see i like my HDR just very subtle. Just only need a little bit.


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ripleys baby

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RobWatson

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Noisy HDR?

One thing to watch for is the under exposures have to be boosted and so the noise levels are raised relative tothe shorter exposure elements in the HDR stack. One trick is to take multiple images at the same exposure level to be combined so as to reduce the noise level. Simple averaging works but there are better methods as well. This is called stacking (in this context).

Pretty straight forward to figure how much noise reduction is needed to offset the boost ... NxN number of images give N fold reduction in noise. A simple +1,0,-1 bracket means a 8 fold boost so need 64 images .... yikes! Most folks settle for quite a bit less as generic/favorite NR can be applied in addition to a mild NR from stacking.

I like to work with 1, 4 and 9 images as a set for reasonable levels of noise reduction for a managable number of images. If one finds unacceptable noise levels or artifacts from excessive NR in their HDR might want to give this frame stacking a try. Generally only the most demanding scene needs this kind of treatment.

PS I have a patent on these methods (US6909459) but pretty much unreadable. The jist is to lower the noise levels in proportion to the boost applied.
 

Iconindustries

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I had forgotten about this thread and when I saw it pop up today it made me want to try out another HDR photo this afternoon. I lost Photomatix when i installed a new hdd in my laptop so i downloaded Nik's HDR efex pro and giving it a try. I like what i see.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/50527022@N02/6305090723/" title="7 shot HDR with GF1 and 20mm Lens by iconindustries, on Flickr">
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"1024" height="681" alt="7 shot HDR with GF1 and 20mm Lens"></a>​
 

Narnian

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This is a work in progress from my vacation last month. Need to work on the clouds to see if I can get them better aligned. Using Nik HDR Efx Pro.

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LovinTheEP2

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One thing to watch for is the under exposures have to be boosted and so the noise levels are raised relative tothe shorter exposure elements in the HDR stack. One trick is to take multiple images at the same exposure level to be combined so as to reduce the noise level. Simple averaging works but there are better methods as well. This is called stacking (in this context).

Pretty straight forward to figure how much noise reduction is needed to offset the boost ... NxN number of images give N fold reduction in noise. A simple +1,0,-1 bracket means a 8 fold boost so need 64 images .... yikes! Most folks settle for quite a bit less as generic/favorite NR can be applied in addition to a mild NR from stacking.

I like to work with 1, 4 and 9 images as a set for reasonable levels of noise reduction for a managable number of images. If one finds unacceptable noise levels or artifacts from excessive NR in their HDR might want to give this frame stacking a try. Generally only the most demanding scene needs this kind of treatment.

PS I have a patent on these methods (US6909459) but pretty much unreadable. The jist is to lower the noise levels in proportion to the boost applied.
Rob,
Do you have examples from one set of images showing the difference between a simple 1 image raw, 3 image -1,0+1 std. HDR vs. HDR image stacked at each exposure 1st then doing the HDR? I'd be curious to see the difference you can personally achieve

Image 1: Simple 1 show RAW. Making of 3 exposures, then HDR.
Image 2: Simple -1, 0, +1 image HDR
Image 3: 3+ exposures at -1 stacked, 3+ exposures at 0 stacked, 3+ exposures stacked at +1 then HDR

Also, I didn't follow the math on the number of images required for xfold = 64 (NxN)

I get 8 fold increase to 64 images means 8x8.. but how did you get to the 8 fold boost if you use a 3 image bracket?? Is it simply 2x2x2 i.e. 2 to the power of the number of exposure values???

So would you then go about doing 64images/3exposure values so ~20 exposures at each exposure setting?

Does it make sense to weight each exposure setting equally or more on the under or overexposed vs. neutral setting (unequal distribution of images 40% at -1, 20% at 0, 40% at +1..) or even further offseting that distribution depending on if you were trying to preserve highlights or lowlights in the HDR...

As you can tell, I am very interested as this is one area I have not really played with but very much interested in .. 1 for noise reduction but also for cleaner more natural looking HDR-Tone Mapping..
 

RobWatson

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Rob,
Do you have examples from one set of images showing the difference between a simple 1 image raw, 3 image -1,0+1 std. HDR vs. HDR image stacked at each exposure 1st then doing the HDR? I'd be curious to see the difference you can personally achieve

Image 1: Simple 1 show RAW. Making of 3 exposures, then HDR.
Image 2: Simple -1, 0, +1 image HDR
Image 3: 3+ exposures at -1 stacked, 3+ exposures at 0 stacked, 3+ exposures stacked at +1 then HDR

Also, I didn't follow the math on the number of images required for xfold = 64 (NxN)

I get 8 fold increase to 64 images means 8x8.. but how did you get to the 8 fold boost if you use a 3 image bracket?? Is it simply 2x2x2 i.e. 2 to the power of the number of exposure values???

So would you then go about doing 64images/3exposure values so ~20 exposures at each exposure setting?

Does it make sense to weight each exposure setting equally or more on the under or overexposed vs. neutral setting (unequal distribution of images 40% at -1, 20% at 0, 40% at +1..) or even further offseting that distribution depending on if you were trying to preserve highlights or lowlights in the HDR...

As you can tell, I am very interested as this is one area I have not really played with but very much interested in .. 1 for noise reduction but also for cleaner more natural looking HDR-Tone Mapping..
For frame stacking to obtain noise reduction the rule is N fold reduction for NxN frames. This comes frm the statistics and physical properties associated with counting photons.

It might help to think in terms of signal rates. For example an image with 1 second shutter if you divide all the pixel values by 1 second you get counts per second ... for a 10 second shutter divide the values by 10 and still get counts per second. Darker objects have a lower signal rate (counts per second) that bright objects. Now just add the images together!

What you see right away is the short shutter (bright objects) times result in higher noise while the darker objects (longer shutter times) bring less noise (as they are divided by a bigger number). To 'fix' this issue multiple images of the brighter objects need to be stacked (averaged) to bring the noise level down. In this example of 1 second and 10 second shutter times there is a 10x 'boost' factor so one would be tempted to shoot for a 10x noise reduction factor (requires 100 images).

In practice such exactitude and extremes are not required for getting decent resultant images (although in some cases it does-highly technical).

I hiope this is clear enough to work out a more general application for 3+ exposure brackets! Basically the longest shutter time sets the overall level of needed noise reduction.

A hybrid approach in which noise reduction (like that found in NIK or NoiseNinja, LR, etc) which trades resolution for less noise can be used in combination with frame stacking to obtain better looking images without all the overhead for full NR via frame stacking. The actual quantitative measure of NR from LR or NoiseNinja can be measured for a particular setting but sometimes going by eye is plenty.

For a +1,0,-1 bracket that is two stops so 4 fold (relative not absolute). The -1 set needs the most frames so 16 frames for 4 fold. the 0 EV set needs 2 fold so 4 frames and the +1 EV 'set' can be single frame.

Clear as mud!
 

RobWatson

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Rob,
Do you have examples from one set of images showing the difference between a simple 1 image raw, 3 image -1,0+1 std. HDR vs. HDR image stacked at each exposure 1st then doing the HDR? I'd be curious to see the difference you can personally achieve.
This sounds like an excellent example ... sadly, no I don't have such a composition to show!

Using the method I described I have used a camera with 2000:1 dynamic range and constructed a final image with 80,000:1 dynamic range with all objects of interest with at least 3:1 signal to noise ratio. The subject matter is amazingly boring set of power stabilized LEDs. Also, proprietary and I cannot share it - not much to look at in any case.

A bigger issue is just how to display the exceptional range of brightness levels in such a way on limited media like a computer screen? I don't think it can be done in a 'pleasing' and 'natural looking' way so this is where objecive and subjective clash headfirst. In such images there is way more information than the eye can see and even more than the brain can percieve. Even if we would see/percieve the 'look' of the image is so far out of our experience it will always look fake or contrived. I think this is the general knock on HDR and I'm only helping make it worse!
 

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