06
Jan
09

HDR Photography

joanot-07

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HDR techniques began in the 1850s, but continuing research and technological advancements have led to the process’s recent popularity in the photographic community.

High dynamic range (HDR) photography is an advanced set of techniques providing for a greater range of scene highlight and shadow luminescence (light and dark areas) than normal imaging processes. In other words, HDR photography allows photographers to acquire and display a greater range of tonal detail than cameras can capture in a single image. The HDR process combines multiple photographs of the same scene taken at different exposure settings to produce a single, well-exposed image revealing a full dynamic range.

Gustave Le Gray – 1850s
 The idea of using multiple exposures to represent high contrast scenes was pioneered in the late 1850s by Gustave Le Gray. At the forefront of French photography, Le Gray was an artist, teacher and author of several instruction manuals. He made his first daguerreotypes by 1847, but his main contributions were in the realm of paper photography.

Enjoying the artistic challenges of landscape over studio portraiture, Le Gray produced a series of dramatic seascape photographs that brought him international acclaim.

Le Gray produced his images by taking separate photographs of the sky and seascape at different exposure settings and physically combining the negatives.

Le Gray accomplished this by cutting the negatives of both photographs at the horizon line and then joining the properly exposed portions of each to render a single image that was impossible to create using standard photographic techniques. By combining the negatives at the horizon, the manipulation was imperceptible in the finished images.

le-gray

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1984 Computer portrait from State Fair

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