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High Dynamic Range Digital Photography For Dummies Paperback – December 30, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Get the lowdown on how HDR works plus ways to shoot it, process it, and finish your images

Are you ready to take an artistic leap forward in your photography? Do you want dynamic photos that bring a scene to life? With this book, your camera, and a little practice, you'll be able to create amazing HDR images. Packed with full-color examples, it shows you how to edit photos to give them more vibrant colors, richer contrast, and sharper highlights.

  • The ABCs of HDR — learn the basics about cameras, gear, workflow, and software options for creating HDR

  • Examine your HDR options — apply different strategies when shooting with a pro camera or basic point-and-shoot model

  • Expand your photo techniques — discover the basics of photo bracketing and how to create HDR from a single Raw photo

  • Turn normal photos into eye-catching HDR images — use Photomatix Pro to create and tone-map HDR images

  • Broaden your horizons — take better photos for HDR and create HDR panoramas or black-and-white HDR images

Open the book and find:

  • What makes a photo a high dynamic range image

  • How to tone-map an HDR image

  • When to shoot more or fewer brackets for an HDR image

  • Tips on shooting single-exposure HDR

  • How to create amazing panoramas

  • Strategies for shooting with a high-end or budget digital camera

  • Steps for converting HDR images to black and white

  • Problem-solving techniques

About the Author

Robert Correll is an author, photographer, and musician. He is coauthor of HDR Photography Photo Workshop as well as books on Paint Shop Pro and Pro Tools music production software. Robert also developed a training system for creating HDR photos with Photoshop CS4.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: For Dummies; 1 edition (December 30, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470560924
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470560921
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,189,904 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Conrad J. Obregon VINE VOICE on February 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
I've always had a problem with the "For Dummies" brand. I often read on the subway and I didn't want strangers thinking I was dumb. If you suffer from this syndrome and want to learn the basics of High Dynamic Range photography (HDR) get over it, or you'll miss a good introduction to an important aspect of photographic technology and even art.

HDR is a method of combining multiple digital exposures of a subject to create a range of tones in a photograph closer to what the human eye sees than a single camera shot reveals. In "High Dynamic Range Digital Photography for Dummies" Robert Correll explains the process of creating such images. While he doesn't waste page space explaining photography fundamentals, he does cover the process in small easily accessible steps for the photographer who already understands how to capture images with his camera. After describing the equipment and software involved, the author tells the details of capturing HDR images and then processing these images, first in HDR software and then in post-processing software, like Photoshop Elements, including so-called pseudo HDRs. He also discusses creating HDR panoramas and black-and-white HDR images.

The book follows the usual jocular style of the "For Dummies" series (does the publisher have a special "wiseacre" editor?) including the cartoons and the usual "Part of Tens". Correll demonstrates computer processing using Photomatix Pro, which is becoming the standard for HDR software, and Photoshop Elements. Photoshop users will not have much difficulty making the translation from Photoshop Elements but users of HDR software like FDRTools, which uses a different paradigm, may have a harder time. (Demo versions of most of the software are available for download.
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If you are interested in HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography, and you plan to use Photomatix software, this is the book for you! One of the most thorough explanations of HDR principals and techniques I have come across, especially if you are using, or plan to use Photomatix for your HDR tone mapping. Since Photomatix is, by far, the most popular and comprehensive HDR software available (at a reasonable price) I suspect that this book will be very valuable as it focuses mostly on using that program. I, personally, was delighted with that! It does explain, in a limited manner, several other HDR software programs, but the main focus is Photomatix - and they state that right up front. They are very thorough with their explanations and techniques. The differences between realistic, and over-the-top HDR interpretations is fairly discussed. I see a lot of beauty in both interpretations in my work and believe there is room, in an artistic sense, for both points of view. Their explanations of the many tone mapping options in Photomatix is the best I have seen - and I have many HDR books! I highly recommend this book.
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I am not going to go in to the part of this book and try to explain the how's or why's of why I like this book. But I am very pleased that I spent my money on it.
I spent 3 months working on a few pictures that I thought were worthy of HDR efforts on my part to come up short of expectation. I went half way through the book. Took one large JPEG photo followed the easy to follow instruction and came up with the best HDR that I have done so far.
I am looking forward very much to using his direction on photographing an old barn that is close to my home.
Thanks Robert!
Jim
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After having purchased 6 or more instruction books on HDRI, I found the Dummies Book to be the easiet to understand and to further make the other books nore digestible. Never have been disappointed with a "Dummies" Book on any subject. Roy A. Meeks
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As other reviewers relate (in considerably more words), the content of this book is excellent. But a good part of understanding how the different manipulations work is seeing the illustrations. The illustrations in the digital version of this book are embarrassingly poor. You can enlarge them, but the resolution is so low that they are useless. If I had it to do again I would buy the print version.
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Maybe it was my fault, but I didn't realize that this book primarily deals with HDR images using a particular software application (Photomatixs Pro). Adobe Photoshop has an HDR module, but the book's author is biased toward this particular expensive software. I think the book is helpful if you can afford to clunk down the $100+ for the program. There is a rather clichéd HDR look out there right now that everyone seems to be using; I think that look is too extreme for me. I think HDR is best when the view doesn't automatically think--oh that's an HDR image. To me, the best HDR expands the dynamic range of a photo without it looking artificial or embossed. If you like that look though, then this book is for you.
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Doing High Dynamic Range Digital Photography is a great way to spend some photography time. Not all photographs translate well into this format, but when they do, WOW! have you got some memorable photographs.
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I bought a couple of other books so I could explore HDR and try it out. The other books I read were more about the author and less on how to really get started. I had no interest in admiring someone's ego. I just wanted to know how HDR is done. This book does a good job of explaining what HDR is and what it isn't. It has many good examples of HDR, and gives step-by-step instructions to how HDR is done with a single photo (NOT really HDR) to many more photos. It also used Photomatix as the main software of choice. I had already purchased Photomatix and was anxious to learn how to best use it.
Since buying this book and carefully reading it, I have been able to produce excellent results. There is a lot of information in this book so, I know that I still have a long way to go to become more proficient in HDR. But, this book is very helpful and thorough in it's approach so, I know I will have a good resource along the way. As for the other books? If you want to explore the author's mindset, be careful of what you buy. If you want to explore HDR then, this is the place to start.
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