From my last track day, the sky was blue with beautifully stretch of white cloud. The object was my friend Yamaha YZF-R1 that so coincidently also blue. Just perfect! Yet, it was about 11AM in the morning and if I shoot the bike normally the result will be a high contrast image. If I want to capture the bike, the background (the sky, the cloud, etc) will simply be over exposed. Yet if I want to capture the background the bike will be terribly under expose. More picture after the jump.
This why I love digital photography, there just so much things you can do for image “manipulation” with ease. One of those things is the HDR (High Dynamic Range) technique. Put simply HDR blends 3 or more of the same images but with different exposure to give single high dynamic range image.
I’m using Photomatix Pro for HDR processing, Lightroom and CS4 also being used for color touch up as well as lens distortion correction. The camera is Canon 7D with Canon EF-S 10-22 lens. No filter being used but I shoot RAW exclusively with 32GB SD Extreme CF so all color correction is being done post-pro.
Using HDR software such as Photomotix Pro is simple and straight forward, but too much HDR the resulting image will not be “realistic” and to few the image will just be plain normal picture.
One of the challenge of shooting for HDR is that each picture need to be identical, not exposure wise, but the object on the image itself. So if the object move and in different position on each picture the result HDR image will not be good. I was lucky for the above image as my friend all stand still when I shoot 3 simultaneous picture for the HDR above. The Canon 7D high-speed continuous drive help a lot, with 8fps drive taking 3 pictures will be less then one second.
I hope you like the pictures above, and do comments and critique! Will be much appreciated.