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HDR, Panoramas and Tone Mapping Merging several different exposures into a single image

HDR "the hard way" ?

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  #1  
Old 04-15-2009, 09:28 AM
DXM DXM is offline
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HDR "the hard way" ?

Being somewhat oversaturated by all plugins and SAP/SAA's (stand alone program/Stand alone application) I was wondering if any of you old pro's or amateurs bordering on genius knew of a way to create HDR images from scratch?

I would like to learn how to achieve the effect manually and thereby gain access to the unlimited tweekings that are the base on which photoshop was founded *choir of angels*

Soo... Help?

Links to tutorials and such are also welcome, I am NOT looking for SAP/SAA's though so you can keep your opinion of which one is the best to yourself thank you.
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Old 04-15-2009, 10:57 AM
Photopro Photopro is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

That is a very big question. If you are not interested in using any plugins, just do an HDR merge and tone map the image to your taste. What kind of output are you looking to create?

If you are interested in a comprehensive understanding of HDR processing I recommend The HDRI Handbook by Christian Bloch. He has won numerous awards for visual effects including an Emmy Award. After reading this book you will have a firm understanding and a strong working knowledge to create your own style.
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Old 04-15-2009, 11:27 AM
DXM DXM is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

I agree that it's a very wide subject of inquiry (I think it's spelled that way), but that's just it.

What I am looking for is how to manually tonemap and lift or subdue luminosity, shadows and detail. In short doing what the plugins and SAA's do but by hand.

As to what output I am looking to create... well that's a whole other type of fish... or something. The reason I want to know how to do it manually is to be able to adjust even the most minimal of variations, the SAA's and plugins tend to run rather roughshod over the image and very often miss it's mark. Either producing an extreme and almost cartoonized version of the original image, or leave it nigh on unchanged.

What I am questing for is the midrange.

I know that there are ton's of HDR plugins and the like but their UI's (User interface) is often very cluttered and unintuitive or on the other end, "press button and sit back"-ish.

Knowing the full route is the easiest way to find a good shortcut, so to speak.
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Old 04-15-2009, 01:00 PM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is online now
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

I am not a PRO and am just making a very general educated guess, but what I think is...
The techniques for achieving a Tone Mapped manual HDRI (High Dynamic Range Imaging) are varied... first and foremost is starting with good single or preferably multiple images that have the proper range of exposures, the pictures need to be registered (all taken without moving the camera and without the subject moving) and all being in excellent focus... Then in Post you need to know.... skillful masking, (as Tony Kuyper says "Luminosity masks are the cornerstone of tone-based image adjustments.") Sooo, being able to make and use and modify all the various Luminosity Masks from the "Super Lights" to the "Super Darks" needs to be mastered (Amica999 has made an action based on the tutorials on Tony Kuyper site http://www.goodlight.us/writing/tutorials.html .....(action is here)) BUT, that's not doing it the manual way!! You will also need to know the various dynamics and intricacies and uses of the numerous blending modes,... how to utilize the power of "Apply Image",... and finally and probably the most important... Practice Cubed till you get the desired results!

I know this is not a very comprehensive answer but getting into intricate detail I feel would be Image specific.. This Tutorial "Layered HDR Tone Mapping" might help as a primer...

Hope this helps in getting you started.

After you have accomplished this daunting task... we are looking forward to seeing a comprehensive tutorial from you!

Last edited by 0lBaldy; 04-16-2009 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 04-16-2009, 09:15 AM
DXM DXM is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

Ol'Baldy>> Thanks man, for some reason you seem to be one of those who actually understands what I'm saying and what I mean. I checked out the links you posted and they were right up my alley so to speak, basically that was what I was looking for in ways of getting started.

I have also decided that I might (in large parts due to sweden accepting ipred... I won't say filesharing is good, but it sure as hell is cheap) for the first time buy a book on the subject of photoshop: The HDRI Handbook by Christian Bloch.

On other subjects I have usually gotten along by reading tut's online but HDRI is such a big subject that I might actually have to go buy a book.

Oh well... I will not say "if" but rather "when" I actually manage this nigh on Herculean feat I will come back with tales of my journey...

eh... in short I'll most likely keep records of the process and compile at least a glossary if not a fullblown tutorial.

that's a long post
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Old 04-16-2009, 12:18 PM
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smoothfluid smoothfluid is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

Thanks for posting the Tony Kuyper link. Very informative. I always was led to believe that HDR came about from the apps, not that it was possible before. I stand corrected.
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Old 04-16-2009, 03:01 PM
DXM DXM is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

my first trial-run on layered tonemapping... with a touch of Beauty retouch added for good measure.
here

Last edited by DXM; 04-16-2009 at 05:55 PM. Reason: oops wrong link
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Old 04-16-2009, 04:32 PM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

i think you meant to post this:

http://www.retouchpro.com/forums/att...8&d=1239911251
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Old 04-16-2009, 05:55 PM
DXM DXM is offline
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Re: HDR "the hard way" ?

yup... thats the one I meant... fixed it now
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