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Sunrise or Sunset

Camera equipment and technique for taking photos.
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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Mark Curtis » Wed Aug 17, 2011 3:39 pm

IMGP5700-4.JPG
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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby mattpayne11 » Wed Aug 17, 2011 7:57 pm

djkest wrote:
mattpayne11 wrote:Here's a few I've done this summer:

Sunset over Shavano - HDR

Sunrise over Uncompahgre - HDR Panoramic

Sunrise over Uncompahgre - HDR

Sunrise over Stewart Creek

Sunrise from Princeton


I like the composition of these shots but to me HDR is a big turn-off with the fake blown-out colors. Might you have these less altered?


I really like HDR, and I know that they are blown-out - it is on purpose. Its my application of creativity. Some people really like it, others really don't. To each their own I guess.

With that being said - I am trying hard to adapt to a less HDR-y look, it is just really hard to do. The weather needs to cooperate with me haha.

Mark - thank you for the kind words! the standard shots from those photos are boring. The lighting of those shots is in such a way that either the sky would be overblown or the mountain would be dark. I'll post a few in a minute to show you the difference! The Princeton one is not HDR - by the way.

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Mark Curtis » Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:16 pm

mattpayne11 wrote:
Mark - thank you for the kind words! the standard shots from those photos are boring. The lighting of those shots is in such a way that either the sky would be overblown or the mountain would be dark. I'll post a few in a minute to show you the difference!


Yeah, no problem. I hope it didn't seem like I was speaking for you in a defensive way.....I knew you would handle it well. I just wanted to share my view on your work. I would definitely like to see the regular versions of your photos.....maybe it will illustrate to detractors exactly why you are choosing the HDR method for these shots where the dynamic range is so difficult to reign in.

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Dancesatmoonrise » Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:31 pm

Mark Curtis wrote:
mattpayne11 wrote:
Mark - thank you for the kind words! the standard shots from those photos are boring. The lighting of those shots is in such a way that either the sky would be overblown or the mountain would be dark. I'll post a few in a minute to show you the difference!


Yeah, no problem. I hope it didn't seem like I was speaking for you in a defensive way.....I knew you would handle it well. I just wanted to share my view on your work. I would definitely like to see the regular versions of your photos.....maybe it will illustrate to detractors exactly why you are choosing the HDR method for these shots where the dynamic range is so difficult to reign in.



Matt, take that Sunrise over Uncompahgre, and try cropping the sky down to the clouds. I'll bet that will create a much more powerful composition.

Just my 2c, of course.

Jim

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby mattpayne11 » Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:56 pm

Dancesatmoonrise wrote:
Mark Curtis wrote:
mattpayne11 wrote:
Mark - thank you for the kind words! the standard shots from those photos are boring. The lighting of those shots is in such a way that either the sky would be overblown or the mountain would be dark. I'll post a few in a minute to show you the difference!


Yeah, no problem. I hope it didn't seem like I was speaking for you in a defensive way.....I knew you would handle it well. I just wanted to share my view on your work. I would definitely like to see the regular versions of your photos.....maybe it will illustrate to detractors exactly why you are choosing the HDR method for these shots where the dynamic range is so difficult to reign in.



Matt, take that Sunrise over Uncompahgre, and try cropping the sky down to the clouds. I'll bet that will create a much more powerful composition.

Just my 2c, of course.

Jim


Jim - I'll give it a shot... and I'll upload the non-HDR versions.

Mark - no worries man! You're right - I need to do that!

Here's the files that HDR is based on. While they are not "bad" photos - you can see how capturing the full range of light would be impossible without HDR. Plus, I think the HDR treatment adds a unique and "epic" feel to it.
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_DSC6378.JPG
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_DSC6379.JPG
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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby mattpayne11 » Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:05 pm

And Jim - I think you might be right - here's the cropped version:
Uncompahgre-HDR3.jpg
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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Dancesatmoonrise » Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:34 pm

Matt, play with it a bit. If it were my image, I'd try cropping even further - right down to the clouds. Not sure how it will look, but I'd try it. Then I might also look at cropping in from the left a little to get the sun more on the 1/3 power point.

Cropping is so simple, but really is an incredible compositional tool. It's also something I do last.



Edit:


Just playing around with the low-res images, this is a rough mock-up of what I was thinking-


Image
Last edited by Dancesatmoonrise on Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby The_Godfather » Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:47 pm

Dancesatmoonrise wrote:Matt, play with it a bit. If it were my image, I'd try cropping even further - right down to the clouds. Not sure how it will look, but I'd try it. Then I might also look at cropping in from the left a little to get the sun more on the 1/3 power point.

Cropping is so simple, but really is an incredible compositional tool. It's also something I do last.


good instance of doing things different...i crop first so that the "scrap" doesn't affect the composition of any details done to the final image. either way works, neither is "required"

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Dancesatmoonrise » Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:56 pm

The_Godfather wrote:
Dancesatmoonrise wrote:Matt, play with it a bit. If it were my image, I'd try cropping even further - right down to the clouds. Not sure how it will look, but I'd try it. Then I might also look at cropping in from the left a little to get the sun more on the 1/3 power point.

Cropping is so simple, but really is an incredible compositional tool. It's also something I do last.


good instance of doing things different...i crop first so that the "scrap" doesn't affect the composition of any details done to the final image. either way works, neither is "required"


The problem with cropping first is, once you have more or less what you want, you may find that you want to "move" or nudge key compositional elements - then it's too late to add image anywhere. It's bit me a few times, so I will even zoom in and process that way, knowing I'm ultimately going to have maybe a tight crop, but get the adjustments done first. Then save as a main version with the entire scene - This way, nothing is destroyed. When cropping first and adjusting afterward, the cropped portion of the image is lost forever - unless you know exactly which values were used on the adjustments for the rest of it.

Anyway, it's just what I've found to work best after processing several thousand images. I hate having to do one twice.

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby mattpayne11 » Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:07 am

Dancesatmoonrise wrote:
The_Godfather wrote:
Dancesatmoonrise wrote:Matt, play with it a bit. If it were my image, I'd try cropping even further - right down to the clouds. Not sure how it will look, but I'd try it. Then I might also look at cropping in from the left a little to get the sun more on the 1/3 power point.

Cropping is so simple, but really is an incredible compositional tool. It's also something I do last.


good instance of doing things different...i crop first so that the "scrap" doesn't affect the composition of any details done to the final image. either way works, neither is "required"


The problem with cropping first is, once you have more or less what you want, you may find that you want to "move" or nudge key compositional elements - then it's too late to add image anywhere. It's bit me a few times, so I will even zoom in and process that way, knowing I'm ultimately going to have maybe a tight crop, but get the adjustments done first. Then save as a main version with the entire scene - This way, nothing is destroyed. When cropping first and adjusting afterward, the cropped portion of the image is lost forever - unless you know exactly which values were used on the adjustments for the rest of it.

Anyway, it's just what I've found to work best after processing several thousand images. I hate having to do one twice.


If you use Lightroom (like me), the original photo is never destroyed, and you can always go back to previous steps at anytime. It really is awesome.

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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby djkest » Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:43 am

mattpayne11 wrote:
djkest wrote:I like the composition of these shots but to me HDR is a big turn-off with the fake blown-out colors. Might you have these less altered?


I really like HDR, and I know that they are blown-out - it is on purpose. Its my application of creativity. Some people really like it, others really don't. To each their own I guess.

With that being said - I am trying hard to adapt to a less HDR-y look, it is just really hard to do. The weather needs to cooperate with me haha.

Mark - thank you for the kind words! the standard shots from those photos are boring. The lighting of those shots is in such a way that either the sky would be overblown or the mountain would be dark. I'll post a few in a minute to show you the difference! The Princeton one is not HDR - by the way.


Matt: I realized my comment was a little insensative since you put so much time and effort into your photography. I probably should have said: Those photos look great butthat I prefer a little less HDR. I wish my own photography was a touch more vibrant though, so I guess I'm jealous in a way. keep up the good work! Also, if you have a normal point and shoot, is there a way to do this or simulate it? Like you said, the thing I like most about HDR is it seems to capture outdoor stuff better, since my photos tend to be too bright and washed out. I use a program called paint.net which is a free photoshop-like tool. Mainly I end up reducing the brightness and increasing the contrast. I also add a touch of sharpness sometimes (not much). I rarely crop them, but I usually decrease the resolution for internet use. (I keep the origional).
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Re: Sunrise or Sunset

Postby Dancesatmoonrise » Thu Aug 18, 2011 2:35 pm

mattpayne11 wrote:If you use Lightroom (like me), the original photo is never destroyed, and you can always go back to previous steps at anytime. It really is awesome.


Same with PS. But in PS, when you lop and crop, then go on to do some really nice adjustments you like after that, while you can certainly go back to the uncropped version, it won't have the same adjustments. I don't know of a way to tack it back on to the finished output and have the tacked on part have the all the adjustments that came after it had been cropped off. If anyone knows how to do this in PS, please let me know.

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