HDR can be used to bring out details. Though my rays are highlighted using dodging tool.
If you are talking about using adjustment layers to do the editing in photoshop then I can understand what you are talking about. But why do you still need the +2, 0 and -2ev original files? Makes no sense since these 3 files have already been merged in photomatix to generate the HDR file.
Just save the HDR as tiff format in photomatix, open the file in photoshop and do whatever additional processing you require. Then if you want to put on the web, just choose save for web in photoshop.
photomatix's quick tutorial to create the hdr image.
2) If on the other hand, you have taken just a single raw file, AND you have the newest version of photomatix, you can also do (1) above. If on the other hand you have an old version of photomatix which couldn't handle raw files, you'll need to create the rest of the frames with different exposure values in photoshop:
- open the raw file in photoshop.
- save the file as jpeg, e.g. "zero.jpg"
- adjust the exposure by clicking image->adjustment->exposure. Do this on the original image and not new layer.
- save the pic as jpeg under a different name, e.g. "plus2.jpg" if you have made a +2ev adjustment.
- undo the exposure adjustment.
- repeat adjusting the exposure some other exposure values.
- save the pic as jpeg under a different name, e.g. "minus2.jpg" if you have made a -2ev adjustment.
- after you have created all the required pics with different exposures, open them up in photomatix and follow the steps as in (1) above.
Btw, in the tutorial of stuckincustoms.com that you're reading, starting from "Step 6 - Photoshop fun" are just additional steps to touch up the hdr pic of undesirable artifacts (e.g. ghosting of moving objects) using photoshop. I believe that's where you got confused. You do not need to do those steps if your pic have no such artifacts.
Hope that helps.
Last edited by ziploc; 16th April 2009 at 12:26 AM. Reason: clarifying
since you have some problems with masking, I'll try to help you with some misconceptions.
to mask is to erase things you do not want in the photo.
Masking is done with the brush tool with the colour being set to black. However to undo the mask, you can use white to paint over the area you want unmasked.
The order of layers is up to you. Depends what you really want to bring out.. For example, the hdr tonemapped image should be on top. However you noticed theres lots of dark spots on your tone mapped layer.. so what you do is but the 0 exposure or +2 exposure layer directly under neath the tone mapped image. Than you mask the tone map image painting the dark spots with the black brush tool. this will bring out the brighter parts of the 0 or +2 exposure layer in the bottom.
I think this is the easiest way to understand masking.
I've been shooting and doing HDRs for a while with Photomatix Pro. So after reading this thread, I'd like to chip in with a few tips and notes...
1. It is much simpler to do a 3 shots AEB on the camera rather than saving different exposures during post-processing. There are benefits of shooting in camera with diff exposures...too lengthy to explained here.
2. Movement of objects is always an issue. While one can really do masking, etc on PS, I try to stay away from that because I'm rather lazy to do so much post-proc. During shooting, always observe the surroundings and sometimes, you can catch a right moment with minimal movements in the 3 shots. If in doubt, shoot more sets - one of the sets will turn out fine.
3. Tripod is a must. Otherwise, drink less coffee to develop a steady hand. I have tried a few handheld 3-shots AEB, and they look alright after merging. I repeat...a tripod is a MUST.
4. Photomatix Pro has an option of "Attempt to reduce ghosting effect...by moving objects". Turn this on if you suspect there are some movements. But it is not a full-proof solution.
5. If possible, shoot in RAW rather than JPG...read up elsewhere if you want to know more about the benefits of RAW.
6. Trial and error is part of the learning process. When I started doing HDR, the pictures sucked. The tweaking of Photomatix controls didn't make much sense. But with loads of practice, one can easily generate a nice looking HDR image within a few minutes. The more you know about each Photomatix control, the better you are in deciding how your HDR will turn out.
7. Caution - not everyone in the photography faternity likes HDR. Some dismiss it as gimmicky. But if you think it kinda suits your taste, then just do it. But HDR is not a substitute for poor photography/technical skills - the basic theories of photography are still relevant.
Here are some samples of my HDR works if anyone is keen...cheers!
...and to add, there're a few books now on HDR, and you can easily find them at good bookstores.
The one that I really like is by Ferrell McCollough, "Complete Guide to High Dynamic Range Digital Photography." Not sure if our NLB has it; I got this from Amazon.com.
After reading such books, suddenly what you are doing in Photomatix becomes crystal clear.
Please read post #26 by Draken413o above for the explanation on layer masking, and see if it helps.
Your HDR is .
Love the colours!
Ok.. Thanks for all the reply.. Very much appreciated.
Will try again with my setting.. Will update you guys again.
Have fun everyone.
I've got a question, in taking HDR, which is recommended: Changing the shutter speed or aperture width?
I read from Photomatix tutorial, it says change to AV mode. But won't this affect the Depth of Field of the exposures?
Sorry for hijacking a bit, TS... But since this is a thread on HDR, I think everyone can benefit from sharing this issue
If you're referring to step 1 of Photomatix tutorial, it said:
So you're right that they asked you to change to Av (aperture priority) mode. When you bracket in Av mode, you select the aperture value, and the camera will bracket by varying the shutter speed. Aperture setting is not changed.Originally Posted by Photomatix Tutorial - Step 1
One thing to note is try to not over do the saturation tab.. it makes your photo very funky yes.. but most people will hate you for killing their eyes.. hehe
I find that strength less than 60, sat 40-60, luminosity -1 is a pretty good combination to get fairly realistic hdrs. This is from numerous attempts.. so try it out!
oh errmm.. if you need inspiration or maybe examples... you can have a look at my terrible ongoing thread of hdrs I've done.
My HDR Thread
The first page is from a time when I thought I got a fairly good hdr.. which is not the case...
the latest works are at the end. Do leave me comments if you like or dislike the work. =)
Last edited by Draken413o; 17th April 2009 at 01:12 AM.