My dad and I share in the love of photography, so about a year ago he subscribed to Popular Photography.  In the latest issue, I saw an advertisement for an HDR or High Dynamic Range photography.  HDR, basically explained, is taking multiple exposures of the same image and weaving together the best pixels from each image.  I looked up a few tutorials on how to achieve this effect in my photography.  The first few I looked at I tried to emulate what they did while watching their video, but I got lost and didn’t achieve the same effect as they did.  I then found a site that led me through simple steps and it worked better on my photographs.

I had traveled to Belize back in January of this year and wanted to try to make my photos even more interesting.  Travel photography is my favorite and the above are just a few of the photographs I edited using the following steps:

1)  Call your first layer ‘Background’.
2)  Duplicate your ‘Background’ and call it ‘Black and White’
3)  Change the Blending Option of ‘Black and White’ to Overlay.
4)  Layer ‘Black and White’: Go to Image > Adjustments > Desaturate.
5)  Layer ‘Black and White’: Go to Image > Adjustments > Invert.
6)  Layer ‘Black and White’: Go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur.  Adjust to abround 40 pixels.
7)  Duplicate the ‘Background’ layer and move it above ‘Black and White’.  Call this layer ‘Linear Layer’.
8)  Change the Blending Option of ‘Linear Layer’ to Linear Light.
9)  Change the opacity of ‘Linear Layer’ to around 62%.

The effect is almost surreal.  The images look to be natural yet they have the effect of almost glowing and extra details.  A few of the tutorials, using programs more advanced than my Photoshop CS3, were able to create images that appeared to be straight from a sci-fi movie, with their extreme detail and contrasting glowing and natural elements.  This was my first time trying this type of editing and I think that I was most successful the photograph of the dock ‘Post’ in the water and the bench among the ‘Trees’ photograph.  The higher contrast and vibrant colors seemed to match the examples of HDR photography that I have seen before.

The original link has an example itself and provides links to other tutorials as well.  link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kolnedra/2257529395/

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