HDR

03 Apr

Coasting through life

By Silver Blue

Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Apollo’s Chariot roller coaster, before the park opened. A lucky employee was the sole rider on the train. “The Thrill of It” (C) 2012 F. John Barker III/Silver Blue Photography

thrill

Silver Blue, who reminds you that memorable photos can happen any time, any where.

 

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18 Jun

It just LOOKS like it is under construction

By Silver Blue

The Virginia Beach Conference Center (which replaced the old Virginia Beach Pavilion):

I’m sure the fact they’re always doing some sort of construction around the Convention Center doesn’t help promote the fact that it’s been complete for several years. I think it looks… sparse. In an HDR treatment, however, I like the colour shifts.

Silver Blue… who COULD have taken the construction out of this, but that would have been revisionist, wouldn’t it?

Well, wouldn’t it?

LOL.

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16 Mar

Where the HDR fascination started…

By Silver Blue

I was in Ghent, Norfolk, VA, and had shot a good number of photos of the Naro Theater and … back in those days, the only option I knew of was the somewhat primitive Photoshop option.

A different look (not necessarily better, but different) is now available by clicking three buttons.

The lower is garish, while the top appears lost in a fog. The difference is that the top photo took (when I rendered it, back in 2007) about 15 minutes of heavy computing power. The lower one took about 8 seconds.

Sometimes, however, just a proper exposure for neon can make all the difference. This one has no HDR effects applied at all, and it’s the one I prefer most:

 

Silver Blue…. who tries to capture what lights up his world.

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20 Jan

Even MORE fun with HDR

By Silver Blue

HDR (High Dynamic Range) allows your photos to display more accurately what your eye sees. Even the top-of-the-line (and multi-thousand dollar) cameras cannot see the full range of light and shadow that your eyes can see, SO… post processing is in order.

(As a side note, the hosting company is STILL attempting to complete its restore from backups. I grew tired of waiting and so I figured out where the missing photos should have gone, and I have reuploaded them).

I love the architecture that I get to see when I go on my walkabouts. Being that I was home sick today, the only walkabouts I did was from the bed to the bathroom and back…plus the occasional downstairs to the kitchen for coffee, tea, or something to nibble. Feeling a bit better now, but know better than to push it. This blog entry, and some light emailing is all the computing work I plan on doing.

Back to the houses, however. I can’t afford to own any of these, but it doesn’t mean I can’t look!

Looks like the house was turned 90 degrees from the way it “should” be set, just to fit on the property. Still. I like all the points. 🙂

Here’s another pointy house that I like (I especially like the upstairs window that mimics the look of the roofline).

This beautiful house used to be vinyl sided before being renovated. You can see the line between the first set of double windows and the overhang — the part of the house to the left of that used to be the “mother in law” suite.I think it’s now all part of one home.

To me, Tudor style houses are quite fashionable. I rather fancy European styles, and this one is nice. (Though I’d probably have to have a riding mower for all that grass.)

This is the house that I posted here framed in a tree (taken from the next door neighbour’s yard).  There’s just something classic about the large welcoming door with side lights.

Hark, do you see who I see? In this lemon coloured house, with the red trimmed door…in the upper middle window… no one but Saint Nicholas himself!

Again, I don’t understand what gets into some people and causes them to paint brick. The purpose behind brick is that it’s low maintenance. Paint it, and you’ve raised the maintenance on the house. Still, the colours contrast well here, and the copper guttering and flashing as turned a nice green patina.

Finally…

There’s always room for evergreens. Growing up in Charleston, SC and Virginia, you get used to having pine trees, evergreens, firs, and the like. (You also get used to the smell of burning pine needles because even though they’re “evergreen”, they shed like a big dog….even though most people in Virginia don’t burn their pine “straw”.)

Silver Blue, who is glad to be back blogging. Now, can someone remove the ice pick that’s over my left eye? Please? Thanks.

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06 Jan

More Fun with HDR

By Silver Blue

High dynamic range, that is.  Since I’m new at all this, there are times that I forget I need to have “bracketed” sets (under, normal, and over exposed), and so… I want to play around with the technique, but I simply don’t have the correct media for it.

BUT… there is still some fun to be had.

I snapped a shot of what I call “the Mesa house” near where I live. I love the juxtaposition of the verticals and horizontals in this shot and, barring the utility lines, find it to be quite good IMHO.

If I had bracketed my shot, I might have been able to regain some detail from the blown out sky, and some in the shadows, as well. Thing is, I’m still learning to “see” an image, not just “look” at it when I’m composing a photo. Does this make sense? Photography is indeed an art form, and unless one is a prodigy, it takes time to hone.

So, there were other shots before this, with the power pole (just barely visible on the right border) more prominent in the scene.

What happens if I attempt an HDR conversion with THIS shot, and one of those, telling it to “align”? (Knowing the limitations means that even though it will do the best it can, there will be “ghosting” and other anomalies that will cause it to be a “de”-composed, or rather, mis-composed shot.)

In this case, instead of getting something to be deleted, I was surprised at the effect. Eerie, spooky, like something you’d expect to see in an suspense film/horror film poster, etc.

Mind you, I’d not print this for the house, but delete it? Actually, the offset is not something I would have considered through lens manipulation, so… it’s a keeper.

Silver Blue, who reminds you — great photos almost NEVER happen…they’re made.

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05 Jan

Beyond what the camera can see.

By Silver Blue

So, you’ve got a new camera (well, I do), and you think… oh, what a great shot!

You frame your photo, click your shutter and…are disappointed. Sure the photo looks good, but it’s not as rich and vibrant as what your eye could see.

That’s because the human eye can see about 18 “stops” of light. Even the best camera can only see 10-12. Which means that your eyes have a much broader “dynamic range” when viewing the world. Now, don’t get me wrong, The house in this photo, the wintering trees, the blue of the sky… all makes for a pleasing photograph. But it’s not as my eyes saw it.

There is a stopgap measure, however. Something called “High Dynamic Range”. You fire off 3 shots. One underexposed (for the highlight tones), one properly exposed (for the mid-tones), and one overexposed (for the shadow tones) [Now, that may sound opposite what it should be, but follow me here.] Then, using a program such as Photoshop, you merge the three pictures. It pulls the shadows, mid-tones, and highlights for something that appears to be able to display more than the 10-12 “stops” of light.

The key is to keep it from looking cartoonish. I went a touch OVER with the settings, but I think this is a much more accurate photo to what I was seeing with my own eyes:

I’ve so much to learn about photography, and the new camera… stay tuned… my eyes are open in 2012, and I’m ready to show you the world as I see it!

Silver Blue… who says “these are the moments that we make into memories.”

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