I shot this image last night just as a storm front was passing through Louisville. I shot seven brackets E.V. +2, +1, 0, -1, -2, -3, -4 in order to capture the full range of tonality in the scene. As I have said before I watch my histogram closely to be sure that I have no blown out highlights which for this scene required four stops underexposure.

I processed these frames in both NIK HDR Efex Pro and NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 and discovered that the later version, NIK HDR Efex Pro 2, is superior in it’s anti-ghosting capabilities as well as it’s tone mapping. I used the Realistic (Deep) preset and adjusted the tonality slider slightly while in NIK HDR Efex Pro 2. I then returned the image to Aperture 3 where I tweaked the vibrancy slider and then sharpened the image. After this morning’s experiment I am sold on the upgrade to NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 and recommend it for anyone wanting to process bracketed HDR images.

5 thoughts on “Thunderboomer

  1. That is a cool shot. I am trying to teach myself how to do a HDR shot. I take 7 shots: +2, +1, 0 -1, -2 and for some reason I just cannot get the shot to look…..well as cool as most HDR shots I have seen. I just need to keep playing with it….working on getting the colors to look good too. Plus the fact that I am a beginner to Photoshop, I am using CS5.

  2. Check out NIK Software for free trials and tutorials for HDR Efex Pro 2. You’ll learn about getting your colors where you want them as well as what happens when you merge the bracketed shots. CS5 also has an HDR option which R.C. Concepcion uses for HDR shots. You should be able to find these and more HDR tutorials on Youtube too.

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