HDR à la iPhone?
High Dynamic Range or HDR is a photographic and post-production technique that creates stunning photos by combining multiple exposures into a single image with deep shadows, rich mid-tones, and bright highlights. Before digital point-and-shot and SLR cameras, HDR was the domain of analog professionals like Ansel Adams. Today, even a greenhorn shutterbug can capture remarkable results using…yes, you guessed it—an iPhone! Here’s what you’ll need:
• iPhone 3GS
• Pro HDR app (download from iTunes App store)
• Tripod (recommended) or stablizing object
Pro HDR is remarkably easy to use: You capture two exposures of the same subject. Take the first exposure by tapping an area that is bright. Without moving the iPhone, take a second exposure by tapping an area that is in shadow. The app automatically aligns and blends the two images, combining them into a single, full tonal range photo. Both the under and overexposed images are also saved, useful for adjustment in Photoshop or Photomatix Pro, two favorite photo manipulation software. Below is an example. This is no award winning composition, but this HDR image is demonstrative of how well this little app works!
While the pros typically take three to five exposures for HDR photos using a sophisticated digital SLR camera, I’m suitably impressed with Pro HDR’s results with only two exposures using a tiny device with a fixed lens. Pro HDR produces full 3-megapixel resolution results. I’m eager to try some additional photo manipulation in Photomatics and Photoshop with the under- and overexposed shots. Stay tuned for more results.
Visit the blog A Day Not Wasted for more information and resources on HDR photography.
Lee BrownFebruary 7, 2010
Sweet app for the iPhone! I love the selective exposure bit and the results are much better than standard shots for sure. It will only get better as they keep upgrading the cameras! Good find!
EjazMarch 26, 2010
Ahha! Are we seeing Mr. Wray endeavoring to explain the working of quantum optics? I am taken by the simplicity and exploration method. Are there more environmental and seasonal examples for use in K-8 classroom?
Chris WrayMarch 26, 2010
Well, quantum physicist, I am not. But I am utterly fascinated by the connection between electronic media, physics and biology. Take morphological scale-space theory, for example. This heady advanced mathematics discipline, based on the simple observation that real-world objects are made up of structures of different scales (sizes). The scale-space framework is the basis for facial recognition systems and high-end digital image processing (check out http://www.topazlabs.com). There are also interesting relationships between scale-space representation and biological vision in mammals. Neurophysiological experiments have shown that the mammalian retina and the visual cortex can be accurately modeled using scale-space theories.
As far as your second question, I think digital photography–and a separate class in HDR–should be a required subject in K-8! The subject spans so many disciplines: photography, art, design, and physics. I think you are on to something here, Ejaz!