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The HDR Book: Unlocking the Pros’ Hottest Post–Processing Techniques, 2nd Edition

Book Description

When it comes to HDR, only three key ingredients are needed: hardware, software, and post-processing technique. Hardware is simple–there are only a few things you need to set up and shoot an HDR series. Software is vastly improved, making it easier for anyone to create an HDR image. The hard part is the post-processing technique. There are only two options: hours and hours of experimentation or The HDR Book.

Featuring real-world interviews with passionate HDR photographers, this updated edition of the popular The HDR Book, by Rafael “RC” Concepcion, is more than a how-to and different from any other HDR book out there. While other books on HDR tend to lean toward the esoteric or formulaic, this book takes another approach. It's a complete and total HDR workshop that teaches you the one thing that most other books miss— once you've tone mapped your image with HDR software, you're still not finished.

Within the pages of this book, you'll find 10 projects–now updated!–shot with everything from a point-and-shoot to a 37-megapixel, medium-format camera. The projects are designed to show you how the subtle differences in each scenario (lighting, subject, environment, etc.) dictate the post-processing needed to achieve one of the many final looks covered. You'll learn not only the different tone map settings RC used, but you’ll also learn the final steps taken in Photoshop to complete each image. Then, you'll recreate these looks your self using the exact same RAW files that RC used! Plus, you get four bonus images to play with and create your own look. The end result: a more intrinsic understanding of the nuances of HDR that will help you create the images you’ve always wanted.

Best of all, The HDR Book is written using the three top HDR processing programs in the industry today: Photoshop’s HDR Pro, Photomatix Pro, and HDR Efex Pro. No matter which program you use, you'll be able to follow along and create your own stunning looks in no time.

Table of Contents

  1. Title Page
  2. Copyright Page
  3. Dedication Page
  4. Acknowledgments
  5. About the Author
  6. Contents
  7. Introduction
  8. One. Tools & Techniques
    1. You Need a Bracketing Camera
    2. How Many Images
    3. Setting a Nikon for Bracketing
    4. Setting a Canon for Bracketing
    5. Change Your Bracket Order
    6. Keep Steady with a Tripod
    7. Use a Cable Release
    8. Exposure Delay Mode/Mirror Lockup
    9. Shoot in Continuous Mode
    10. Shoot in Aperture Priority Mode
    11. Try Spot Metering
    12. Shoot in RAW
    13. Experiment with JPG
    14. Shoot More Than You Need
    15. Shoot for the Basement
    16. Shoot with a Low ISO
    17. Wait
    18. Watch Out for the 30-Second Limit
  9. Two. What to HDR
    1. Old Stuff Rocks
    2. Overhang? Shoot It!
    3. It’s All About Texture
    4. Two Rooms with a View
    5. Dimly Lit Interiors
    6. Machinery HDRs Well
    7. Sci-Fi Was Meant for HDR
    8. UrbEx HDR Is du Jour
    9. Twilight (Not the Movie)
    10. HDR Portraits
    11. See Outside a Window? HDR It
    12. Careful with Putting Too Many Together
    13. Go Big or Go Home
  10. Three. Creating a Tone–Mapped File
    1. HDR Is Tone Mapping
    2. The “Sound” in HDR Software?
    3. Photomatix Is My Main Sound
    4. Create Tone Map Presets
    5. Remember to Experiment
    6. Using Photomatix Pro from Lightroom, Bridge & as a Standalone
  11. Things You’ll Do a Lot in Photoshop
    1. Default Colors/Swap Colors
    2. Creating Layer Masks That Show and Hide By Default
    3. Using Adjustment Layers
    4. Adjust Your Brush on the Fly
    5. Merge Up!
    6. New Smart Object Via Copy
    7. Open a File in Camera Raw
    8. Use Photoshop CC? Check Out Camera Raw as a Filter
  12. Four. Project: Alabama Hills
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
    3. It’s Your Turn: The China Grill
  13. Five. Project: The Pit
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  14. Six. Project: Portland Head Light
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  15. Seven. Project: Hilton Milwaukee City Center
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  16. Eight. Project: Utah House
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  17. Nine. Project: Kena Part 2
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  18. Ten. Project: Jade Mountain
    1. Pano Tips
    2. HDR Pano Processing
    3. Post-Processing in Photoshop
    4. It’s Your Turn: Detroit Church
  19. Eleven. Project: Oil Paint in Vegas
    1. Tone Mapping the Image
    2. Post-Processing in Photoshop
  20. Twelve. Alternative Approaches in HDR
    1. Using HDR for Black & White Photography
    2. Creating an HDR from a Single File
    3. Double–Tone–Mapping the Image
  21. Thirteen. Putting It Together
    1. The Bodie Bed
    2. Moon at Half Dome
    3. Dancing House
    4. Eric Wojtkun
    5. Golden Gate
    6. Glassblower
    7. Zombies! Run!
    8. Jade Mountain
    9. Jade Mountain Club
    10. Sabine’s Christmas
  22. Index