Modern Cameras usually have quite good Dynamic Range. That means that they retain quite a bit of detail in the Shadows and Highlights before clipping. But sometimes that Dynamic Range is not enough.
That’s when HDR Photography comes into play. That stands for High Dynamic Range. Let’s assume that a Camera has 10 Stops of Dynamic Range, while a particular Scene might exhibit 25 Stops of Lighting from dark Shadows to bright Highlights. 1 Stops wouldn’t be enough to Capture that particular Scene.
To combat that issue, you would shoot multiple Photos at different Exposure Levels and later merge them into one HDR image. Because of that, HDR Photography works best when you lock down your Camera on a Tripod and have a non moving subject, like a beautiful Landscape. Don’t get me wrong, even a Landscape moves over time, but it doesn’t change as fast as a Car, for example.
The Photo above was merged out of six differently exposed single captures, but the Dynamic Range still isn’t quite High enough. That is because there were just to many Stops between the dark filed and the bright sunset.
For my Style of Photography, the 12.4 Stops of Dynamic Range that my Camera offers is usually more than enough. I also do not really like HDR Photography, as I find it to be over rated, a lot of people that I know think HDR makes every Photo better, but that is not the case. And Photographer Friends of mine know that. They only use HDR Photography were it fits in.
Most of the times, when I had originally planned to merge some Photos into an HDR, I ended up just using one of the Photos that were meant to be part of it, and edit it as a stand alone Image. That is because I usually like it better than what came out of the merge. That is also why I wasn not really able to find any HDR Photos as examples to use in this blogpost. It’s just not my style.