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Complete Guide to High Dynamic Range Digital Photography (A Lark Photography Book) Paperback – May 6, 2008

4.5 out of 5 stars 105 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: A Lark Photography Book
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Pixiq; 1 edition (May 6, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600591965
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600591969
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.8 x 11.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #609,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I have been trying to learn HDR for the past 6 months using mainly online tutorials. This is the first book I have purchased or read on the subject. Without going into too much scientific detail the author gives a great understanding on what HDR is all about.

He gives great background info on why HDR is needed, what causes noise in digital photos and a lot of information you might or might not want before he ever gets into the how-to-do part of HDR.

He also compares the different programs available for HDR processing and the strengths and weakness of each program.

Once he gets into the actual HDR part, he gives you pretty much all the information you might need to produce great HDR photos. He shows examples and explains how to get both 'realistic' and 'artistic' photos.
He also shows what kind of problems you might incur with different types of scenes and how to approach and correct the problems you might encounter. He also shows how to do HDR-type processing from single images(although he says it won't get you the same 'true' HDR results.

He covers many areas in which you can use HDR, including interior home photography, or, color gels, and a new technique he developed called 'flash merging', which is shooting multiple images using your flash and making an HDR photo from that. I personally think learning this new 'flash merging' technique is worth the price of the book alone.

There are also some samples from great HDR photographers (but those are mainly for inspiration on what can be done, and don't offer much in the way of how-to's).
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Format: Paperback
High Dynamic Range (HDR) Photography presents an opportunity to capture pictures that look more like the real world. Even though this book is not perfect, the subject is important enough for serious photographers to take the time to read the book and experiment with the technique.

Because the range of light that the human eye can see is far greater than what cameras can photograph, it's not uncommon for photographs to show impenetrable shadows or burnt out highlights where the human eye saw detail. Photographers have had some success ameliorating the condition with things like levels and merging and masking in Photoshop. Now HDR promises to extend the light range a great deal further.

After an overview of HDR photography, the author discusses methods of capturing images for HDR processing. He next presents a discussion of two major tools of HDR photography, merging and tone mapping, and then describes the processing of an image in one of the HDR programs, Photomatix Pro. Next he describes the HDR programs available (including Photoshop's apparently second-rate facility) and compares the results of the different programs using several images. The book then discusses post processing of the HDR image, and provides additional tips on making the original capture. The author finishes up by describing special techniques like flash merging, panoramas and single image HDR processing. Sprinkled throughout the book are the portfolios of several HDR artists.

Because I found it difficult to grasp the processing techniques just from the written word, I downloaded trial versions of some of the available HDR programs, and I prepared a set of photographs with different exposure values to use whenever McCollough suggested a particular technique.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've looked through and read four or five different titles relating to HDR photography and all of them (except this one) have some pretty serious gaps or flaws in their approach. This is a young book market, because the technology itself is pretty young / still evolving. I like the many inspiring examples (wonderfully reproduced) in this book, and I like the fact that all of the core tools one might choose for HDR imaging are presented.

However I feel this book sets you up to be a jack of all trades and a master of none when it comes to using HDR software. I would've preferred that the author choose the two most popular programs and really delve into them, to the tune of another 20 or 30 pages worth of instruction, showing step-by-step progressions. Still it is a valuable HDR reference and the only one I would recommend to my students, but there's room out there for something more.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I actually bought this book partly to improve my HDR skills and partly based on the high ratings it has recieved. If you are looking to read a book about HDR, you probably have tried a few things using either photoshop or free software downloads. You are competitive enough to play with the available sliders, options and other enhancement tools available for each step during the workflow. If you already own an HDR software, like, Photomatix Pro, you probably are looking for a comprehensive guide / tutorial to make your photos look like the ones you have seen on the web, photo books or youtube tutorials. Unfortunately, this book is not of great help in this regard unless you are a total novice to HDR. It explains the basics very well. That's a whole lot of theory probably makes you better informed but not necessarily makes your images stand out. Printing some high quality images (illustrations) in the book with relevant technical information is helpful. But this book has well over 150 images, of which, many are totally irrelevant to what was being discussed in those sections. No doubt, those images are very pleasing and definitely the work of art, however, most of them are in no way help you improve your skills. In other words, they kind a distract you from your reading. The book does not really provide many more useful information than the Photomatix Pro Tips menu that is built in to the program and is readily available for almost every action that you perform using the software. For Photomatix Pro users, whom this book is supposedly a tutorial, there is a bigger disappointment. I guess this was written for older versions of Photomatix. The menu options, as described in step by step tutorial in this book simply do not exist in the current version of Photomatrix Pro.Read more ›
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