August 18, 2016

My First HDR Photo



I’ve had a massive crush on Trey Ratcliff’s photography for a few years now.  His work is HDR heavy (High Dynamic Range), involving a lot of post-processing.  I thought that I’d need to make an investment in some new software to start dabbling in HDR photography but today, Christmas came early, and I stumbled across Google Nik Collection plug-ins for Lightroom and Photoshop.  Not only does Nik include a whole heap of really cool tools, but the best thing is, they are absolutely FREE!! As of March 2016, Google released the full version to the public, gratis.  Happiness ensures.

This is my first attempt using Nik HDR Efex Pro.

Port Charlotte, Islay, Scotland, HDR Efex, no noise reduction

I’m still getting the hang of using continuous bracketing (multiple images at different exposures) and this is my first go at the HDR Efex Pro plug-in, into which I exported the 3 images of Port Charlotte, Islay, Scotland from Lightroom.

I ended up with a lot of noise in my image, so I ran the HDR file through Nik Dfine which reduced much of the noise automatically.  I further reduced the noise in Lightroom but it’s still looking a bit noisy/granular in the clouds.  My original 3 images were a bit under exposed which doesn’t help.

Port Charlotte, Islay, Scotland. Google Nik HDR Efex and Dfine noise reduction.

What do you think ?

I shall attempt to play with some of the other images I took and post them tomorrow.

Oddly, when I exported the first image to Instagram, a considerable amount of red tinted chromatic aberration appeared in the clouds, which isn’t there when viewed on my phone or laptop.  I’m still trying to work out why this occurs (it’s happened with one or two other images in the past, and always it’s the clouds).  I suspect it’s something to do with the compression method Instagram uses.  If anyone has any ideas, please let me know.

About the author 


Photographer, digital nomad, whisky lover.

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