I’ve been fascinated by some of the HDR (High Dynamic Range) images that you find on the web, and was keen to try it out myself. The main concern I had was whether the use of HDR is part of the art of photography, or whether it makes it ‘too easy’ to create great images. If it does make it ‘too easy’ then does that actually matter?
Anyway to test it out I took a single fairly ordinary RAW image (Nikon NEF) that I had taken at the weekend, and tried to create an HDR image to see what difference this would make.
The image is of a sea wall at St.Margarets at Cliffe, near Dover, Kent, England. I took the photo on my way back from shooting a panorama, simply because there were three white rocks in a line, no real attempts at composition or anything (it had started raining and I wanted to get back to the car!). Here is the original JPG copy of the image straight from the camera (resized in Photoshop):
Using Dynamic-Photo HDR software, I imported the NEF version of the file, selected the ‘eye-catching’ mode, adjusted the tone mapping and here is the result:
5 minutes work has certainly made for a more dramatic image. Certainly oversaturated, the white stones have turned gray, I clearly need to do some finetuning, but it does give an indication of what is possible.
An improvement? I’ll leave that for others to decide!