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Complete Guide to High Dynamic Range Digital Photography

  • ISBN13: 9781600591969
  • Condition: NEW
  • Notes: Brand New from Publisher. No Remainder Mark.

Product Description

It’s the latest and hottest technique, made possible only through digital. High Dynamic Range photography is the process of taking several pictures of a scene at various exposures, then merging them into one file. So the entire photo can look crisp and detailed, from highlights to midtones to shadows—and photographers needn’t sacrifice any part of their image. And the best way to master this exciting technology is with this thorough, easy-to-follow, and visually spectacular guide. No other title does justice to these cutting-edge techniques, which actually take the viewer into worlds far beyond normal photography—sometimes even beyond normal human perception. Ferrell McCollough, a widely respected photographer, pushes the boundaries and inspires others to pursue their artistic vision, too. The amazing results simply can’t be achieved any other way.

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Complete Guide to High Dynamic Range Digital Photography



  • Byron Totty

    I have been trying to learn HDR for the past 6 months using mainly online tutorials. This is the first book I have purchased or read on the subject. Without going into too much scientific detail the author gives a great understanding on what HDR is all about.

    He gives great background info on why HDR is needed, what causes noise in digital photos and a lot of information you might or might not want before he ever gets into the how-to-do part of HDR.

    He also compares the different programs available for HDR processing and the strengths and weakness of each program.

    Once he gets into the actual HDR part, he gives you pretty much all the information you might need to produce great HDR photos. He shows examples and explains how to get both ‘realistic’ and ‘artistic’ photos.

    He also shows what kind of problems you might incur with different types of scenes and how to approach and correct the problems you might encounter. He also shows how to do HDR-type processing from single images(although he says it won’t get you the same ‘true’ HDR results.

    He covers many areas in which you can use HDR, including interior home photography, or, color gels, and a new technique he developed called ‘flash merging’, which is shooting multiple images using your flash and making an HDR photo from that. I personally think learning this new ‘flash merging’ technique is worth the price of the book alone.

    There are also some samples from great HDR photographers (but those are mainly for inspiration on what can be done, and don’t offer much in the way of how-to’s).

    If you are new to HDR and want to learn how its done, from analyzing scenes before your first image is ever captured in the camera, all the way through to final image, of if you have been doing it for a while and want to learn how to approach problem areas that are keeping your HDR photos from looking like the pros (like noise in your clouds and dark areas) then this book would be a great investment….and it’s at a great price.

    ByronT….Tulsa, Ok

    Rating: 5 / 5

  • Conrad J. Obregon

    High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography presents an opportunity to capture pictures that look more like the real world. Even though this book is not perfect, the subject is important enough for serious photographers to take the time to read the book and experiment with the technique.

    Because the range of light that the human eye can see is far greater than what cameras can photograph, it’s not uncommon for photographs to show impenetrable shadows or burnt out highlights where the human eye saw detail. Photographers have had some success ameliorating the condition with things like levels and merging and masking in Photoshop. Now HDR promises to extend the light range a great deal further.

    After an overview of HDR photography, the author discusses methods of capturing images for HDR processing. He next presents a discussion of two major tools of HDR photography, merging and tone mapping, and then describes the processing of an image in one of the HDR programs, Photomatix Pro. Next he describes the HDR programs available (including Photoshop’s apparently second-rate facility) and compares the results of the different programs using several images. The book then discusses post processing of the HDR image, and provides additional tips on making the original capture. The author finishes up by describing special techniques like flash merging, panoramas and single image HDR processing. Sprinkled throughout the book are the portfolios of several HDR artists.

    Because I found it difficult to grasp the processing techniques just from the written word, I downloaded trial versions of some of the available HDR programs, and I prepared a set of photographs with different exposure values to use whenever McCollough suggested a particular technique. Even though I felt that McCollough could have given more explicit instructions on the use of the various converters, I was able to create images that demonstrated a far greater range of light then any individual image I had captured, or then images that I was able to adjust in Photoshop.

    Because our eyes have become accustomed to the limited range of standard photographs, many of the author’s photographs appeared to be too vivid, although when I considered the sample HDR images I had created, I realized that they seemed to reflect the actual light values I had seen when taking the pictures. On the other hand McCollough has no objection to pushing the range of light beyond what the human eye can see to create surrealistic pictures for artistic impact.

    I wish that, rather then providing a step-by-step explanation of processing of an image in Photomatix Pro, the author had provided an actual tutorial that the reader could follow on his or her own computer, using downloaded images that the author provided. I guess I really want a book called “the Complete Guide to Photomatix Pro”. On the other hand I would also have liked to see full demonstrations of the other available software, similar to the demonstrations provided in “Mastering HDR Photography: Combining Technology and Artistry to Create High Dynamic Range Images” by Michael Freeman.

    Because HDR works best where there is no subject movement, the techniques contained in this book are most likely to be applicable to landscape and still life photography. However, it appears there are also opportunities in single image HDR photography for moving subjects.

    I am certain that as HDR matures we will be presented with many volumes that can show us how to use this technology, but for now at least, this an excellent place to start.

    Rating: 5 / 5

  • L. Zettersten

    Complete Guide to High Dynamic Range Digital Photography (A Lark Photography Book) is an easy to read guide that makes HDR understandable and do-able. Unlike other books on HDR that left me thinking maybe I shoud’be gone for that rocket scientist degree after all, this one works for me. McCollough takes a relatively difficult aspect of digital photography and puts it on a level that makes me feel like I really can take perfect HDR photographs. I know I will want to refer to its informative and well done illustrations many times to fully utilize all the aspects and possibilities of this phenomenal and relatively new phase of photography. I highly recommend it!

    Rating: 5 / 5

  • CMOS

    I’ve looked through and read four or five different titles relating to HDR photography and all of them (except this one) have some pretty serious gaps or flaws in their approach. This is a young book market, because the technology itself is pretty young / still evolving. I like the many inspiring examples (wonderfully reproduced) in this book, and I like the fact that all of the core tools one might choose for HDR imaging are presented.

    However I feel this book sets you up to be a jack of all trades and a master of none when it comes to using HDR software. I would’ve preferred that the author choose the two most popular programs and really delve into them, to the tune of another 20 or 30 pages worth of instruction, showing step-by-step progressions. Still it is a valuable HDR reference and the only one I would recommend to my students, but there’s room out there for something more.
    Rating: 3 / 5

  • Conan F. Thomas

    HDR photography solves one problem with digital photography, the inability to record an extended tonal range that captures detail in the shadows while preserving it in the highlights. Most fussing with histograms, contrast, and post-processing is simply a compromise. The techniques explored in this book can truly extend the dynamic range of your photographs, and the author provides solid advice on how to apply this tricky process.

    You’ll find step by step instructions for capturing the dynamic range of any scene, using features found in virtually every digital camera. The photographs used as illustrations in this book are inspiring, too. I recommend this book highly.
    Rating: 5 / 5