The HDR Book: Unlocking the Secrets of High Dynamic Range Photography. Phew…That’s a long title.
Anyways, introducing The Photo Formula’s official review of Rafael “RC” Concepcion’s new book “The HDR Book: Unlocking the Secrets of High Dynamic Range Photography.” Commence.
After being blown away by RC’s HDR photography being featured on Scott Kelby’s blog a year or so ago, I was always curious as to RC’s workflow. His new book The HDR Book: Unlocking the Secrets of High Dynamic Range Photography blows the roof off his techniques and reveals his recipes for success.
Say what you will about HDR (High Dynamic Range), but let it be known…it is here to stay!
RC focuses on three pieces of software for his tone mapping: Photoshop CS5 HDR Pro, Photomatix Pro, and Nik’s HDR Efex Pro. He does state he prefers Nik’s software (as do I), but essentially his techniques are compatible across all platforms.
He starts at the beginning, and even points out that shooting JPEG might be best for HDR (haven’t tried it, but I’m very interested in hearing more). He talks about shutter releases, tripods, mirror locks, bracketing etc. These fundamentals are a great starting point for those just beginning their journey. I remember searching and piecing together different sources when I first started out HDR…this would have been what I was looking for.
Then he gets into the nitty gritty. Exposing his initial tone mapping workflow. This is hugely in-depth, and is super clear in regards to how the technology works. I learned a ton, even though I’ve been practicing HDR techniques for the past couple years.
The “Post-Processing” work in Photoshop he does, was another fantastic chunk of the book. Often times we think…”Okay, it’s tone mapped – all done.” RC breaks down his process for fine-tuning images, swapping skies, removing junk, artifacts, halos etc. It’s all EXTREMELY useful, and informative.
Folks, if you’re looking for a one-stop-shopping resource on how to TRANSFORM your HDR photography, look no further. Check out the book below, and do not hesitate to buy it. I know this book will be an essential guidebook for you in the years to come.