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  1. #1
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    quick, possibly/probably stupid HDR technique question

    OK. I want to take an action shot of someone biking, but in HDR. If I put my camera on a tripod and take my standard HDR landscape shots with 3-7 bracketed exposures and no biker in the image, can I then leave the camera where it is, take one shot properly exposed with the bike rider in the frame, and somehow merge them in photomatix without some weird ghosting effect?

    Or, should I just use the non-biker landscape shots in photomatix, tonemap it to my liking, export to photoshop and then merge with the single RAW image of the biker? Is that the best way? Is there a good tutorial for something like this anywhere? Not the HDR part, I have that under control, it's the merging of the images with the biker that is the problem. I dont even know what to call it so I cant really google it very easily.

    Thanks for any help

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by couloirman View Post
    OK. I want to take an action shot of someone biking, but in HDR. If I put my camera on a tripod and take my standard HDR landscape shots with 3-7 bracketed exposures and no biker in the image, can I then leave the camera where it is, take one shot properly exposed with the bike rider in the frame, and somehow merge them in photomatix without some weird ghosting effect?

    Or, should I just use the non-biker landscape shots in photomatix, tonemap it to my liking, export to photoshop and then merge with the single RAW image of the biker? Is that the best way? Is there a good tutorial for something like this anywhere? Not the HDR part, I have that under control, it's the merging of the images with the biker that is the problem. I dont even know what to call it so I cant really google it very easily.

    Thanks for any help
    The easiest way would probably be to use some sort of layer mask on the biker after you HDR the background. At least that's how I'd do it.

    There may be some way to automate it, though. I'll leave that to the super tech PS guys.

  3. #3
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    You want to shoot your HDR "plate.". Then, using masks you want to "put" just the biker into your plate using masks.
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  4. #4
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    You can take just 1 shot, change the exposure in post and then run them through Photomatix. I've done it before with good results in crappy lighting but it's more limited...

  5. #5
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    If you shoot RAW, you can take one picture and alter it in post-processing. Slide the exposure to -2 for one image, use the original for a second, and increase exposure to +2 for the third.

  6. #6
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    I think 2 stops is a little much, but +/- 1 or maybe 1.5 should be doable, and certainly give you a better result than what the OP is suggesting.

    Who ISN'T shooting RAW these days, other than Photojournalists burning up frames?

  7. #7
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tippster View Post
    Who ISN'T shooting RAW these days, other than Photojournalists burning up frames?
    shit, only people who don't care about their photos. Even photojournalists should be smart enough to know that storage is mad small, mad cheap and you can get 50+ rolls of film per card. If you don't shoot raw you may as well be shooting in auto.

    And the stop difference really depends on the location. I have seen some that could go 1 easily and others that could really use up to 3 +/-. Granted I'm not an HDR junkie (actually hate the more processed jobs) but I have looked at plenty of before afters.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by systemoverblow'd View Post
    shit, only people who don't care about their photos. Even photojournalists should be smart enough to know that storage is mad small, mad cheap and you can get 50+ rolls of film per card. If you don't shoot raw you may as well be shooting in auto.
    It's not about the storage, it's about the processing time. At least from the couple of pros I've talked to who shoot jpeg.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dfinn View Post
    It's not about the storage, it's about the processing time. At least from the couple of pros I've talked to who shoot jpeg.
    Well if it isn't about storage I would still shoot raw+jpeg in case you wanted some real processing options.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by systemoverblow'd View Post
    Well if it isn't about storage I would still shoot raw+jpeg in case you wanted some real processing options.
    If you need to say, shoot a thirty frame sequence, most cameras will bog down shooting in RAW, especially if you're writing to an SD card. That's one of the times I hear a lot of people talk about switching to JPEG. Also, shooting time lapses.

    The AP also has some pretty strict rules about manipulation of photos shot by photojournalists, to the point where even minor color correction can be frowned on. So shooting in JPEG would give you a better image if you couldn't touch it once it's in your camera.

    But yeah, RAW always, unless there is a really good reason not to.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dfinn View Post
    It's not about the storage, it's about the processing time. At least from the couple of pros I've talked to who shoot jpeg.
    Exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by systemoverblow'd View Post
    Well if it isn't about storage I would still shoot raw+jpeg in case you wanted some real processing options.
    Once the shots are filed, 90% of the time immediately after the shoot, they're gone. Nobody I know in the field archives their shots for later. Then again they're going to multiple events and shooting hundreds of photographs per event.

    Reuters also got egg on their face a few years ago due to some stringer in Lebanon enhancing a photo (google it.) Now our shooters have to shoot .jpeg and are only allowed to crop and adjust curves in the field... that's it.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tippster View Post
    Exactly.


    Once the shots are filed, 90% of the time immediately after the shoot, they're gone. Nobody I know in the field archives their shots for later. Then again they're going to multiple events and shooting hundreds of photographs per event.

    Reuters also got egg on their face a few years ago due to some stringer in Lebanon enhancing a photo (google it.) Now our shooters have to shoot .jpeg and are only allowed to crop and adjust curves in the field... that's it.
    Seems unfair when the print journalists aren't held to any standards regarding manipulation when writing copy.

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