HDR Experiments: Library of Congress and U.S. Capitol

Library of Congress HDR

I finally got Photomatrix! (Thank you dad!) Haven’t gotten any chance to take bracketed photos to make a real HDR, but I could not wait and threw in single photos in to try out the software. I love HDR architecture. The first photo I threw in the software of course was one of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. The original photo was from my trip to D.C. last August. (To those who are not photo nerds, HDR means high-dynamic-range imaging. In plain English, that means to bring details out of a real scene from direct sunlight to the dark shadow, um, based on my amateur understanding anyway.)

我終於有Photomatrix了!目前還沒機會出去拍用來HDR的照片,但迫不急待隨便丟了一些單張照片進去跑,一直覺得HDR拿來做建築最美,所以第一張丟進去的就是華盛頓的國會圖書館,原始照片是去年八月去華府的時候拍的。(HDR是高動態範圍影像,用業餘不負責的白話來說就是把整個實景從陽光直射的地方到暗暗陰影的地方的細節都帶出來。)

US Capitol HDR

My reference guides are David Nightingale’s “Practical HDR: A complete guide to creating High Dynamic Range images with your Digital SLR,” which is a book my dad gave me, and Angela B. Pan’s “HDR Workflow: The Essential Guide for Beginners,” which is a PDF you can buy online at $9. In addition to Photomatrix, I also downloaded a 30-day trial version of Tropaz, a Photoshop plug-in of filters.

There is obviously so much to learn for me. But I was so excited when the first image came out because I finally figured out exactly how people do this! When I first saw HDR photos, I was very confused and even asked Aaron what filters people use in Photoshop to make pictures look like a painting that’s high contrast and all lit up. Then I found out, silly, it was HDR. And then I found out it was NOT just HDR but post-HDR filters. Now I know the secrets!

There are a ton of HDR guides and reviews of guides out there. I have never read or compared difference guides other than the two I mentioned above. But I do find these two resources very useful and easy to understand for beginners. Now I can’t wait for some nice weather so that I can get up to Mount Washington and bracket some pictures of downtown Pittsburgh!

我的參考書是大衛南丁格爾的「精通數位單眼:HDR實踐活用全攻略」,我爸借我的書,和 Angela B. Pan 的 “HDR Workflow: The Essential Guide for Beginners”,是個PDF檔案,可以在網路上買,美金九塊。除了Photomatrix之外,我還下載了三十天試用版的Topaz,是個Photoshop的濾鏡外掛程式。

顯然還有很多要學,但我做完第一張照片真的很興奮,想當初孤陋寡聞看到這種高對比、什麼都曝光到、跟畫一樣的照片,還問Aaron大家在Photoshop到底是用了什麼濾鏡做了什麼事,後來才知道原來這是HDR,然後又發現原來這不只是HDR,HDR做完有時候還要加濾鏡和效果,所以終於知道大家怎麼做出這種照片真是豁然開朗。

市面上有很多教學跟評論,我沒有試用很多或好好比較,剛好這本書和短短的PDF都很有用又很適合初學者。快來個好天氣我就可以去華盛頓山上bracket匹茲堡市中心三角了!

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