Last week I shared photos from Green Lakes State Park from a beautiful Autumn day. As I walked around the Green Lake Trail a few minutes after sunrise, I found some locations had a lot of shadowed areas and bright sunlit areas. While digital cameras can capture a wide range of light these locations went beyond what my Nikon D750 could handle.
That is when I take a set of photos to cover the range which is called bracketing. The Nikon D750 has a bracketing button which sets the number of exposures and the range using Exposure Value (EV) settings. I often use -2EV to +2EV in 1 stop intervals.
Those five photos allow me to capture details in the dark shadows and the bright highlights. Something our eyes do easily but takes a bit of digital wizardly on a computer.
In my case, I use an Adobe Lightroom plug-in from Skylum called Aurora HDR app. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. Aurora HDR brings in all five photos and merges them together. It has many pre-sets to choose from which I browse through until I get something close to what I envisioned the final image would look like. From there I finish off the image in Lightroom.
In the case of the image with the bench, it was really dark. To insure I got the whole range, I increased the EV range to -3EV to +3EV with 7 photos. I was really glad I did as the bench area came out very detailed while keeping the bright colorful trees in the background perfectly exposed.
Hope you enjoyed these photographs and, if you are a digital photographer, I hope I gave you some inspiration to try HDR processing.