The Roberts Mansion – Spokane, Washington
HDR stands for high dynamic range, and it essentially takes a series of digital camera images, each shot with a different exposure from darkest to lightest. HDR software combines the best parts of the three overexposed, underexposed, and balanced shots to create a dramatic image with beautiful shadowing and highlights. If you wish to learn more about HDR photography, please check out: HDRInsider.
I highly recommend you shoot HDR images using a tripod. My process is to take between 3-5 different exposure images, usually -2, 0, & +2 or -1, 0, -1.
My critique of this image…
(1) I should have allowed slightly more room at the top of the image. The tip of the roof is too close to the top frame. (2) I wish I could have allowed more room at the bottom of the image to include the complete stairs, flowers, and sidewalk. However, this would have introduced more overlapping clutter. So, I had to make a choice. (3) On the far left side of the image you see a partial driveway cover attached to the home. I wish it wasn’t there! It was impossible to include the whole thing and there was really no way to completely exclude it based on how it is attached to the home. (4) Finally, see the partially seen green tree on the right corner? It would have been great to include it all, but… Again, I would have introduced more unwanted clutter to the image.
Hope you learned something from my mistakes.
Photomatix – I have the stand alone version, which I prefer, to the plugins for a few different post processing programs. Photomatix merges various exposure shots into an HDR image. Next, you use a variety of sliders to adjust the image to your liking, from natural (As seen in this image.) to more artistic. With the final image, I save at as a .tiff file and import it into Photoshop Elements were I use a variety of Nik Software filters. There’s a variety of HDR software programs available: Photoshop and Nik Software, to name two.
Nik Software – With this image, my final post processing included the following Nik Software filter Color Efex Pro: Tonal Contrast, Pro Contrast, and Darken/Lighten Center.
The Roberts Mansion was built in 1889 in the Victorian Queen Anne style here in Spokane, Washington. EJ Roberts was a successful civil engineer having earned the distinction by age 28 of completing the longest expanse of railroad in the shortest period of time of anyone in the United States. His move to Spokane brought him into a close business and social relationship with D. C. Corbin, a local railroad builder. Roberts acted as chief engineer of Corbin’s railroads and invested in silver mines. He went on to become president of Union Iron Works, a local steel foundry. Corbin and Roberts owned a duck hunting ranch together. That ranch is still in the Roberts family five generations later.
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