Is This Controversial Photography Technique Dying?

Is This Controversial Photography Technique Dying?

HDR or High Dynamic Range photography is a subject that will always get photographers going.

It has been around for a few years already and seems to have a devoted group of fans – as well as enemies. Some people think it’s just a trend and it’s actually dying already. Here’s what people had to say about it over at Digital Photography School.

All I know is, when I shoot my D750 at base ISO I can get more colors, and pull more from the shadows than I ever could on my D7100 with 5 stops of bracketed shots. So yeah…maybe the whole idea of bracketing to get HDR is going the way of the dodo bird.– Simon Ringsmuth

HDR might not be dead, but the newer DSLR (especially the newer full frames) wider dynamic range makes it needed less. I only do HDR when I can’t get the range I am looking to achieve in the final image. LR’s merge to HDR has made creating HDR much easier. I like the natural look to HDR, and not the overcooked look that some are using. Since switching to full frame I don’t do nearly as many HDR images as I once did.– Bruce Wunderlich

I really think the HDR war is going to be the new frontier, at least for the next few years. Even on mobile phones it’s going to be all about how much light you can capture (i.e. shooting at high ISO values, or making lenses with wider apertures) but ultimately the focus is going to be on coaxing as much data out of the image as possible. Whether through automated in-camera software processes, which we already see quite a bit, or using software like Lightroom or Aurora HDR, we’re going to see a lot of emphasis not on how many pixels the image has, but what software can do with those pixels to make the best possible image.– Simon Ringsmuth

HDR processing still has its place. While today’s cameras capture a higher dynamic range than older cameras, there are still situations when blending exposures results in greater detail throughout the range. To avoid the “overcooked” look, which thankfully was a fad, I tend to blend my exposures manually rather than use a plugin.– Anne McKinnell

With all the new sensors and updated software (Lightroom, Photoshop and standalone products like Aurora HDR and Photomatix) there are plenty of options to create truly amazing HDR images. The other option is to create a well balanced, and well edited photo, from just one image. This requires a bit of know-how with your chosen image editing suite. But with a bit of practice, you can create some amazing images that have just as much detail as any HDR image. Also, your images will look more realistic, and sometimes that may be necessary (for example, you may be shooting for a client who does not like the HDR look).

Read more opinions on the HDR technique over at Digital Photography School.

Source: Digital Photography School

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