Experimenting with HDR: The Process

One of the more important parts of digital photography is in the processing; the act of tweaking the photos a bit in post to help bring out colors or otherwise naturalize the shot. I've tended to stay a bit conservative in my approach to processing as I have wanted to keep my photos as true to life as possible. In the photos below I've followed my typical processing procedure: amp up the colors a bit, crisp the details, and flesh out the overall tone of the photo.

Typically when bringing images together (in what is called HDR) those images are of the same subject. Here are some examples of traditional HDR work. In the past couple of weeks, however, I've been playing around with different ways of processing and with infusing otherwise discordant images for various effects. I've found that as a result I am able to get some interesting images. Here are some of those experiments along with a charting of the various steps I took in order to get the final product.

The Final Product

The above photo came about through four steps. The first two steps involved processing the two original images prior to mashing them together.

Once I finished processing the two photos individually, I enfused the two together resulting in the below:

While I do like the result, I felt that it was a bit too heavy on the painting image. When I set out to create the finished shot, I had envisioned the brick wall being a bit more prominent. Even after playing around with the processing I found that I still wasn't getting the effect I wanted. The final step, then, was to layer the above photo with the processed individual shot of the brick. The end result gave me a shot that was heavy on the brick, and, with some tweaking of the contrast, allowed me to bring the painting out a bit as well.