Welcome to HDRI Mania
For the uninitiated, HDR also called HDRI, stands for high dynamic range imaging. It is the digital photographic process of combining multiple exposures to create an image with increased dynamic range. There are many tools and techniques for creating High Dynamic Range Images and I cover many of them in my book. Critics find many HDR images over saturated and "hyper-realistic." We don't necessarily see these as problems and address the aesthetics of HDR on our blog. As you can see if you our my gallery, we incorporate all different styles of HDR into our work. We don't deny we like to push the envelope, but we also believe HDR imaging techniques help make an image "dynamic" without seeming unreal.
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He is a certified Maya instructor, a passionate panoramic photographer, a close affiliate of HDRLabs, and overall a really cool guy. His students learn everything about shooting HDRIs, applying them as lighting in Maya, rendering with mental ray. In short, his courses really get you ready for production, and his students regularly get hired at prestigious VFX houses like ILM.
This page summarizes the most frequently asked questions Prof. Witte encountered in his HDR courses.
- What kind of camera will I need?
- Do I always need an HDR?
- Will HDRs make my lighting (in my 3D scene) “perfect” every time?
- Is there another name for High Dynamic Range Imaging?
- What are MDRs? LDRs? and SDRs?
- What are the differences between a light probe, spherical image, LatLong, vertical cross, cubic (etc) versions of HDRs?
- Can my clothing/color choices cause problems?
HDR Photojournalism Debate
HDR used properly is appropriate for photojournalism, says Unified Color's Omvik
Are High Dynamic Range photos appropriate for illustrating news? That's the debate that's been started by the Washington Post's use of an HDR image on its front page in January. Sean Elliot, president of the National Press Photographers Association came down firmly against it, saying, 'HDR is not appropriate for documentary photojournalism.' John Omvik, Marketing VP with HDR software maker Unified Color understandably disagrees. He's written us a response arguing that what we see is closer to HDR than, say, a mono photo shot with Tri-X film.
What is HDRI?
HDRI stands for High Dynamic Range Imaging.
Increased dynamic range has been the holy grail of photographers since the invention of photography. Breakthroughs in chemistry and optics advanced dynamic range for early photographers until a point where they science had reached its full potential. It was still not enough. Ansel Adams spent hours in his darkroom dodging and burning his prints to increase dynamic range and Pete Turner is known for is techniques of rephotgraphing projected version of his images to increase tonal range and color saturation.