Forums \ Photo Critiques \ Critique to your thought of HDR and nature shots
More specifically to this picture. You have seen the one none HDR photo of these lilies in CW. That picture and another are also posted to flickr. Let me know your thoughts to the HDR picture and the regular unaltered photos. WATER LILIES IN HDR
Likes and/or Dislikes
Thank you to those who have posted comments on the picture (flickr). It seems that HDR can be used with flowers, which people truly prefer is hard to say but it does seem that people do like this HDR photo.
I really like it Janice!
I like Rich am not a big fan of HDR and would not have known that this was if you hadn't said so. BTW this one is beautiful.
Thank you Rich, Bonnie and Dan for the comments. Not always a fan of HDR with nature, but it would be nice if more could turn out this way. Thanks again for your feedback.
I thought it is an excellent photo, Janice. Like Dan, I also would never has guessed it was HDR. The lilies have a very natural look.
Thank you Chris for also posting your comment. It's great getting all the feedback from everyone.
Janice, I looked at the photos and I think they're all beautiful, so this is not a critique of the photo itself, but a commentary on the methodology, and the validity of any conclusions you might draw from the results. By using only 1/3 stop increments (and I'm assuming 3 shots), you haven't actually increased the dynamic range by any meaningful amount - one back petal in the left flower is still blown out (although it's not really objectionable in any of the shots), and the amount of shadow boost is pretty minimal and could have been accomplished very easily from a single exposure. So in my view, this may have been made with multiple exposures and HDR software, but it is not really an HDR image, because the Dynamic Range encompassed by the multiple exposures was not all that High relative to a single exposure. And for this shot, you actually didn't need it - you wanted bright flowers standing out against a fairly dark background, and you were able to achieve that quite well with the single exposures. The one obvious difference that makes the "HDR" version pop a little more is the local contrast enhancement, which brought out the detail in the petals and on the surface of the lily pads, and strengthened the reflections. But you could have achieved that result more quickly and easily by tonemapping a single exposure in Photomatix. I often like to do that with a low-contrast scene (or one where I want to preserve the existing scene contrast, like this image), because the Detail Contrast slider in Photomatix usually has a much more pleasing effect than the Clarity slider in Lightroom at higher levels. So I guess the point I'm making is that in this case, you went to a lot of extra trouble to not accomplish something that you didn't really need to accomplish in the first place, if that makes sense. A better test case for your experiment would be something like a backlit flower shot against a blue sky, and I would go with +/-2ev intervals and adjust exposure compensation if necessary to ensure that the highlights are well below the upper end of the histogram on the darkest exposure. In a case like that, you would see a huge difference between the HDR and single exposure versions. I can't say which one you would prefer - I often like the look of a flower against a blown-out white background - but that's the fun of trying different things!
Rich and Dan, just as an FYI, you've both voted and left very favorable comments (much appreciated, I might add) on quite a few unadvertised HDRs...I only put them in the HDR category when they're blatantly obvious or I can't find another appropriate category.
Good answer Rich! Diplomatic. ;)
Well, either he has a good eye, or I need to up my game!