~ Check out Gavin’s HDR workshops. More details here.
Updated 07/2009: Revamped & improved article. Added a new segment dealing with movement and blur (towards bottom).
by Gavin Seim: In 2007 I wrote an article about using true HDR techniques with people. Yep, portraits, fashion and wedding images can be utterly amazing using High Dynamic Range. HDR is not just reserved for nature and still life. We’ve been using it at Seim Studios for some time now and it blows clients away. Heres some of my secret sauce to get you started with HDR portraits and a few of my own images.
- Photomatix HDR software (Save 15%, code PPS15)
- HDR archives on Pro Photo Show
- Lightroom Enfuse (LR Plugin)
- Hydra (Mac only HDR software. Less extensive that Photomatix)
- Gavin’s HDR portrait gallery.
- HDR section on the forums (get some feedback)
What’s HDR All About?
First lets cover basics. If you’re already an HDR master you can skip this part. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. It’s better seen than described, so other than the images I’ve included in this article, you can see more on my website.
HDR is the combining of light and dark tones of multiple images taken at varied exposure levels and then blended using software like Photomatix, Photoshop, or another HDR program. Photomatix is the most popular among HDR fans and we have a deal worked out with them. You can save 15% with promo code PPS15. Basically this software blending allows the photographer to selectively choose how much light he wants in various parts of the image. You’ll have a light to dark range that’s much higher than that of a normal exposure, thus giving you much more control over the final image.
You can also check my two PPS episodes from 2007, talking about HDR and HDR portraits. HDR Podcast Part1 & HDR Podcast Part2. There’s also PPS #57, an HDR episode with Trey Ratcliff that’s full of insight.