Still in a holiday mood, I have been playing with Photomatix trying to convert “normal” pictures into high dynamic range pictures (HDR – read more here and here). At the moment, I am certainly not even up to the beginner standard but I have learned a few things in the last couple of hours. Simply put, HDR is taking multiple pictures of the same scene at different exposures, then combining these exposures to make a single image.
For simple HDR type images, the most common methods (on windows, Linux users get a different set of joy and I have no idea about Macs) are to use Photoshop or Photomatix. In newer versions of Photoshop you have the option to either play with layers and blend your images (can get fantastic results but can also be very hit and miss) or use the Merge to HDR option (File -> Automate -> Merge to HDR in CS3). Sadly, personally, I have never had much success with the automatic option but you might manage it.
Alternatively there is a bit of software called Photomatix (Pro costs $99, Basic is Free) which does a similar job but includes “Tone Mapping.” Peter Hasitschka’s page gives more details (along with some fantastic images) so I wont go into detail here. Needless to say, the tone mapping can give you some amazing results, although I have only been playing with this for the last 30 minutes or so. So far it is worth every penny. Continue reading →
Well, after a somewhat wet holiday all the WhyDontYou contributors are now back home safe and sound.
It seems our Atheistic comments here, while being studiously ignored by the Abrahamic deity were noticed by a few more elemental Gods… Obviously our lack of sacrifices to Mithras and general irreverence ensured that every day we were subjected to almost Biblical downpours. At one point it became comical – every time we were in the car it was brilliant sunshine, as soon as we got out the clouds appeared and the rain began. Seriously. Add to this a week where we had no access to the internet but every single day a thousand and one religious-nonsense blog topics forced themselves upon us. The Gods were truly displeased.
That aside, it was great fun and about a zillion photographs were taken. In fact, it has prompted me even more towards buying a “real” camera, and now I am stuck with the difficult decision between two entry level Digital SLR cameras. I have narrowed it down to a choice between the Nikon D40x and the Canon EOS 400D.Â I have found the Nikon for aboutÂ£15 cheaper than the Canon now (because of the Nikon cashback offer) so that looks favourite – for now. If anyone has any experience of either I would be interested to hear it. The next hurdle will be where to buy it from 🙂
Anyway, enough rambling for now. Hopefully normal service will resume in the morning.
[tags]Holiday, Deities, Mithras, WhyDontYou, Technology, Nikon, Canon, D40x, EOS, EOS 400D, Camera, Digital Camera, Digital SLR, SLR[/tags]