HDR and an explanation

I’m pretending to be on night duty like my sister. It’s good I had a nap after work.

I thought I’d give an explanation of HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography and why I like to do this. Basically HDR is taking multiple photos with under, correctly and over exposed shots and using special software to pull the best out of all photos, combining them into a single, hopefully beautiful photo. I use a special software called Photomatix Pro to do this.

The naked eye can take in much more contrast in lighting than cameras can. God has given us an incredible gift of sight. It has been said the eye can take in 11 stops difference and I on have 7 stops represented here. Here are the 3 images I made tonight setting my cameral to Auto Exposure Bracketing, a feature that allows you to take several shots in rapid succession, each one a different exposure. A tripod is nearly a must.

The first exposure the white clouds are blown out, too bright. Even with that, the green grass below was not as bright as it was to my naked eye. However, this is the brightest exposure I used.

The next one the clouds are nearly perfectly exposed.

The darker clouds are looking more accurate, but the rest of the photo is really dark.

This is what I was able to make with these three photos.

It is much nearer to what eye actually saw.

One more point that has nothing to do with HDR, but I wanted to point this out, especially for those using P&S cameras. Notice the wide-angle distortion in the first three pictures? The line of the land looks like it goes up on each side. If you take a picture with your P&S, and do not zoom in at all, you will have some distortion as well. The naked eye sees at nearly the equivalent of 50mm and these were taken at 18mm. I fixed some of the distortion in the final pic but I see I have more work to do on it!

Here are a few more that I got this evening:

So if you find that you really like this type of photography, here are two sites to visit:  Stuck in Customs and Acadia Magic Photos.

The first is a blog with an HDR a day from his worldwide travels. He has vision in only 1 eye due to surgery as a child. He also uses a commons license which means he is very (extremely) generous and you can click through and save his photos as wallpaper, print, etc. for personal use. The other is a site with photos of Acadia National Park in Maine, where I hope to visit this fall, but do not dream of getting such splendid images.

And if you think that HDR is cheating and not real photography, that’s fine. I feel that photography can be an art as well. Afterall, in the early stages, photography had only sepia, then b&w, then color.

Good morning! I think I shall start cleaning now. It is fun being on night shift.

Thursday July 29, 2010

We were on our way home from a family reunion and there was a thunder storm kind of all over the south and west. So I asked my sis to pull over onto a side road to get some pics. We did and it wound around to a slightly higher point and here was this graveyard sitting on the edge of a field. Sorry if the blue cast of the tombstones looks a little funny. It really was getting dark. 

hdr graveyard.jpg

I went to other end of the fenced in area, shooting some more and desparately hoping that I could catch some lightning.

Low and behold, when I was looking through the downloaded pics I found 1 picture that had fingers of lightning in the upper left hand corner.

hdr graveyard 2.jpg

Here’s a really big one so you cans see the lightning in the upper left hand corner.

hdr graveyard 2.jpg

VBS 2010 – Friday July 23, 2010

Sunday Night

They came running out of the vans

VBS 3.jpg

They registered

VBS 23.jpg

Chapel – Singing

 VBS 18.jpg


VBS 20.jpg


VBS 26.jpg


VBS 11.jpg


VBS 4.jpg


VBS 14.jpg

Monday Night

See Sunday Night

Tuesday Night

See Sunday Night

Wednesday Night

See Sunday Night

Thursday Night


VBS 1a.jpg


VBS 2.jpg


VBS 16.jpg


{oops. no more pics.}

Rain  Recreation

VBS 28.jpg

Yes, finally on the fifth night we had a lovely evening to be outside. The kids (and adults) were nearly wild with glee. Plus, God had sent a lovely breeze along with the threat of rain before the evening began. This blew out the heat of the day, leaving a pleasant evening behind.

We had between 53 and 75 kids. Which is about all we can handle with the way we are set up, plus with the number of people able to help. It always blesses me to see the way everyone pulls together to make this a fun and purposeful week for the kids. We were blessed to have Gina come from NY and Annette from VA come to help us. We use Answers in Genesis’ materials and kudos to them for having such a complete, detailed and Bible-filled curriculum.

Here are more pics from the week.

VBS 10.jpg

VBS 24.jpg

VBS 25.jpg

VBS 1.jpg

VBS crafts.jpg

VBS 27.jpg

VBS 8.jpg

VBS 12.jpg

VBS 6.jpg

VBS 21.jpg

VBS 15.jpg

VBS 17.jpg

VBS 7.jpg

VBS rec.jpg

VBS 29.jpg

Had to post this one again. I took very few class pics because it’s so distracting. But this one has so much going on it cracks me up. Gina is through the glass teaching the 4-year-olds. The reflection shows me in the left hand corner behind the camera and the drama team doing a practice run on the stage.

VBS 11.jpg