Friday, January 11, 2013

Photo of the day: Rising out of the clouds

There are few images more challenging than a bright mountain over a shadowed foreground. If you use too long of an exposure, the foreground is bright but the mountain in the background is too bright and washes out. If you use too short an exposure, the mountain has nice definition but the foreground is dark. The solution, of course, is HDR: High Dynamic Range, combining multiple shots at different exposures to push detail into both the highlights and shadows. The Canon EOS 5D III has a built-in HDR setting, but it tends to make images look washed out and low-contrast in my experience (or maybe I just haven't figured out how to use it well yet). You can also do HDR the old fashioned way, using PhotoShop, but that requires careful alignment among the three images, which is impossible to do without a tripod. I probably should have tried to find some kind of makeshift tripod, using a rock or something, but the light was changing so quickly that I didn't have a lot of time to improvise. So, I just did the best I could and got the best image I could in the few seconds I had!

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