Wednesday, July 25, 2012


No this isn't HDR. People seem quite fascinated with the HDR process but it requires a fair amount of work both with the initial shots and also with the post processing which requires special software. Some cameras will do it "in camera" now but it's really not the same as true HDR.

So how did I do this shot? Well to be honest it was quite easy. First it's worth knowing that architecture and industrial things look best in HDR (in my opinion). I took this picture at the harbour in Kirkwall on Orkney.

I opened the picture in Photoshop elements (I'm currently using version 10). Once I'd done that then I went to my filter list and opened up Topaz Adjust which is a set of "plug-ins".

Then I used the HDR set of filters and tweaked some of the colour settings and added a vignette. Back in Photoshop I cropped the picture and cloned out some of the lamp posts and people with a few strokes of the Heal Brush. I reduced the noise and then finally added the watermark on the warehouse in the back right of the picture using a new layer and the distort tool.

All in all very quick way to get an HDR-like shot without all the rigmarole of several differently exposed shots. This is what the original looked like when I first exported it out of Lightroom. You can see there is a big difference between the two shots and the first one really does look HDRish. Not bad for a couple of minutes work.


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