How the West was won with High Dynamic Range (HDR).

Dodge Bootlegger Truck

Dodge Bootlegger

As many of you know I own Ancient Light Galleryin Scottsdale, Arizona. I have been processing myFine Art Photographs with HDR for a year or so now and really loving the look and feel that it gives the nostalgic and historic places and things that I photograph. As you can imagine I get many questions from Gallery goers, the most popular question by far is “Are these paintings?” followed by, “So if it’s not a painting you take a photo and THEN you paint on the canvas?” when I tell them that my photos are not paintings and that there is NO paint involved some leave it at that and others want exact detail about how I do what I do and so I give just a basic explanation. I’ve seen more than one Gallery goer get that look like, “What the heck is she talking about?” when I explain, so I keep it simple and don’t go into great detail. It’s funny, I get comments like, “Don’t you worry about giving your secrets away?”, my reply is always, “Well, no not really, because HDR isn’t a secret anymore and we each have our own unique style of how we use it”.

 

Toroweap Point

Toroweap Point

There seems to be some, ok alot, of mystery about the High Dynamic Range process. Basically, most camera’s are not capable of recording the entire dynamic range of light in that exists in the real world, capturing only about 5-7stops in good quality detail. HDRs are created by taking multiple shots exposed for the highlights, mid-tones and shadows separately and then merged into a single image which has a dynamic range up to 14-15 stops. There, do you get it now?!?!

I specialize in photographing mainly historic and nostalgic places and things throughout the WestSouthwest, I have been on this quest to preserve Western history through my photos before it is gone for several years now. I love this part of the US and it has become my passion. When I discovered the HDR process for my photographs I was thrilled, I had finally found a process to make the subjects I was shooting “look like they looked” to me when I was shooting them….with HDR they look alive again, like the days back when the West was wild and life was simple.

 

Mystical New Mexico

Mystical New Mexico

It is so satisfying to get such wonderful reactions from people that come into my Gallery. I love sharing my passion for what I do and feel fortunate everyday. I also love how my photographs can awaken a sense of wonder and awe in people and help to inspire them to open their eyes to what is really around us in the world. I know that this happens because I get emails and letters from Gallery goers, Facebook fans, and visitors to my website telling me how my work has inspired them not only to do more with their photography but to look at life in a different way and to get out and explore. Mission accomplished, that is why I do what I do.

 

Kiva Light

Kiva Light

 I now offer private classes on how to apply HDR to your photographs in my Gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona. In my “Turn your Photos into Fine Art”I go through the basics of using the Photomatix software and other information that the student will need to get started. It is so much fun to watch the students eyes light up as we work with their images.

For more information on this and other photo classes and workshops that I offer at my Scottsdale Gallery please visit my website,  http://www.ancientlightphotos.com/ or post a comment with your email address and I can get information to you. In addition, if you want to get started learning HDR right away with Photomatix software use my discount code AncientLightPhotos to save 15% on the program at check out. 

Now get out there and explore this amazing world we live in and have FUN!

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