It looks as if the overall composition is good and there is enough of interest to make a good image, but IMO it is too dark as it is. Your success in PP will depend on how much PP you have already done to get this far as eventually you will introduce too much noise and possibly features best left in the dark. It looks promising in a quickie trial; make sure you increase saturation and contrast in proportion to the increase in brightness
Last edited by crisscross; 15th May 2009 at 10:28 AM.
These types of extreme contrast scenes far exceed the dynamic range that the sensor is capable of capturing ... so something has to give.
Usually it's best to expose so that the mid-tones can be brought up to an acceptable level in post-processing; this means that you'll have severely blown highlights, but that's just the way it has to be.
I've given it a 30 second Photoshop "make over" for you ...
- Adjusted Gamma to dramatically brighten the dark areas without significantly affecting the highlights
- Increased saturation
- Gentle sharpen to improve the appearance of the lights
- Crop away some dead area
What do you think?
Last edited by Colin Southern; 15th May 2009 at 12:25 PM.
Thanks for the comments... wow.. there's really so much for me to learn.
It means that the camera isn't capable of recording detail in the lightest bits and the darkest bits at the same time - so you have to decide between retaining detail in the brightest parts (and having a very dark overall shot like you have), or retaining detail in the darker parts, but suffering blown highlights.
Unfortunately, noise is what happens when one has to stretch detail recorded as a shadow, into midtone levels. If it were me, I would probably have exposed that shot for about 4 times as long as you did, or shoot a series of bracketed shots and turn it into a high dynamic range photo.It's very "grainy".. "noisy"... I think I like my original shot better.. *love your own*
It depends on the type of camera that you have. Many have the ability to bracket a group of shots automatically - if it doesn't then you'd need to change the shutter-speed manually (without moving the camera).
How do I make bracketed shots?
Sure - have a look through our high dynamic range forum
Can I please see a sample of a photo with high dynamic range?
No worries - that's what they pay us the big bucks for
Awwww... I will get a headache.. Thank you for patiently answering all my questions.
Now that is the problem... lol
I don't own a tripod yet.. but I will definitely improvise. I didn't know you guys get paid for this... good for you then.
I'll keep taking pictures and just keep on posting them here to get them critiqued.
Sushi: I wasn't thinking of anything as drastic as Colin has done, but thanks Colin for the translations and explanations.
I notice that your posted file is very highly compressed, down to 75kb, for forum I suggest 250-300kb for 1200x800 image is more appropriate, maybe 150 for this one as so much is black. So anything you do on your original will have much less tendency to noise etc than what we do on the 75kb one.
Here is a 10sec upgrade in mac GraphicConverter (or any free/simple prog might do) just dragging brightness, contrast & saturation up about 50%. This has only introduced pin-point "blown highlights" which are fine for the subject and suggest you could have increased length of exposure considerably. You seem to have a Nikon, if it is a DSLR or P5/6000 you will find if you press the replay button and twirl a knob you see 'highlights' and it is fine to include small points of highlight.
Don't get flustered by it; the whole point of this site is to help people improve their photography by us all sharing our strengths and weaknesses.
Last edited by Colin Southern; 15th May 2009 at 12:37 PM. Reason: Insert Image Inline