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Thoughts on HDR for Listing Photos?12020

Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
I'm curious what recipe is recommended to create HDR photos for listings. There seem to be 3 ways to do it:
1- AEB
2- Some EOS cameras (including mine) offer in-camera HDR that appears to be based on 3 exposures.
3- Full Manual 7 to 9 exposure plush flash.

1 and 3 would involve going into lightroom and that's easy enough as photos typically need to be graded, cropped, and otherwise edited. Sometimes you can frame the shot, sometimes you have to do that in edit.

I realize this isn't strictly a Matterport question... but my job tomorrow involves listing photos and being able to offer drone, listing, and matterport made it much easier to get the matterport gig.
Post 1 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Bon Secour, AL
Chemistrydoc private msg quote post Address this user
I live by it. 5-shot manual bracket 2 eV step, fully manual, RAW files, use a proven overseas editor.

PM me if you need further details.

Keith
Post 2 IP   flag post
Basic
Member
Saint Simons Island, GA
HarlanHambright private msg quote post Address this user
I also live by it. I use 5 exp @ 2 stop increments shooting jpeg and batch them in Photomatix using "natural" setting. photonerds will yell at me but HDR pretty much negates the need for shooting RAW except for extreme color correction, but if you pay attention to white balance in the first place it's not a big deal. unless i'm shooting a play or art reproduction, I use HDR. I even once shot an interior of a high school gym while the girls basketball team was practicing. I processed an HDR image using ghost removal and the result looked like a sports illustrated photo! you can hand hold using continuous mode and invoke image alignment with excellent results as well.
Post 3 IP   flag post
808virtually private msg quote post Address this user
Absolutely bracketed 3-5 exposures(~2 ev) RAW photos. Run through Lightroom then Photoshop. I've created my own filters in Lightroom that works great.
Post 4 IP   flag post
Wingman private msg quote post Address this user
I do not think Auto HDR built in cameras are producing great HDR image. With AEB you can do much better range. You can do all shoots manually but with AEB it is going to be much faster. 5 shoots will bring more midtones but I think even 3 shoots can do a great job.

If you are shooting from a tablet there is an easy way. Move EV in manual mode to both ends(negative and positive) to find extreme Exposure values and see in preview on your tablet what you can see on these values. FOr example if you move it to -2 and see trees outside and happy with what you see that's your negative(or left side) EV extreme, then move it to the positive number(or right side) and see if shadows you want to see are visible. Let's say it happens at +2 EV. So basically you have just figured out what extreme values for EV you need. Then set EV initially to 0 go to AEB settings and set 3 shoots with a step +-2. You will get three shots -2, 0 and +2. If you want to set it to 5 shoots with +-1 step then it will make -2,-1,0,1 and 2.

There are other ways to do it but I think that's the fastest one. May be harder to preview on a smaller smartphone screen but I guess it is doable too. If you shoot without any device you can do all that on a camera screen.

DO not shoot AEB handheld and use some remote control and you should be fine. I have stopped using Photoshop long time ago as I just do not like an idea of cloud hosted software and monthly payments for it. There is plenty of free image editing software. However for combining HDR I use Photomatix. Easy to use and you can do batch combining.
Post 5 IP   flag post
Wingman private msg quote post Address this user
Sorry, forgot. I know a rule of never using Flash for AEB shoots. You actually do not need any assisted light. Just turn lights on everywhere in a room and disable flash.
Post 6 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
@Wingman - I shoot an EOS6D with a 17-40 EF f/4 redline lens. I have a couple of zooms and a macro Canon MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1-5x. I also have a Canon Macro Ring Flash for that MP-E.

I have not used a flash for a long time. I just invested in a Speedlite 600ex-rt via eBay. Why buy new when you can buy quality used? I doubt it will be here in time, shrug.

I also have some AlienBees studio lights but I haven't used them in forever. I did some catalog stuff with them at one point.

You can see my PhotoStream on Flickr. I have some Bee macro photos from a couple of weeks ago up there.clickable text Flickr images have to be viewed on Flickr. However, it was taken with the MP-E and hand held. This is the sort of stuff I enjoy.

I take pictures with phone/tablet, but I don't see them as photographic tools.

as for Adobe, yea I pay for it. I remember paying dearly for Creative Suite years ago and find $40/mo more palettable and it's up to date. I use Premiere Pro and Adobe Acrobat frequently. I also use Lightroom when I'm actually shooting photos.

I'll use AEB and see what it does. Realtor said he would prefer non-HDR photos, but I'll snap some while I'm there to get some experience with it.
Post 7 IP   flag post
Wingman private msg quote post Address this user
Do not worry about getting flash in time, if you do AEB with lights with an idea to combine it later into HDR you will actually ruin it with flash. The idea with HDR is to capture a few overexposed, few underexposed and a normal one. If you use flash you won't get any of under/over exposed shoots and there will be nothing to combine in HDR.

Here is a good guide for doing HDR with AEB.

Even though the author says (s)he has a method of using Flash with AEB for HDR it just complicates things.
Post 8 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
Well, today's project went pretty well. The gremlins came along. I lost 30 minutes fighting with settings and then after I shot the property in AEB and Regular (regular was requested) I screwed up and wiped my card. I forgot to turn the camera off and pulled the card out. I'm not used to shooting off of a tripod with live view off. Had to re-shoot the property. I muttered some obscenities that came out as "Let me try that again." Not a happy camper.

I like the AEB method and chose to shoot them as 7 bracket shots.

Lessons learned:
- Raw only , no JPG preview needed, just creates clutter.
- On camera HDR is like frozen cuisine, there is just something wrong with it.
- Moving forward I'm only going to shoot AEB on Listing work.

Issues:
- AEB sequence naming leaves much to be desired on Canon and DJI.
- I wish I could just push the shutter once and have it take all the shots in the sequence. Holding down the remote release is workable but annoying.
- Switching modes from AEB to non-AEB is messy. In fair disclosure I'm running Magic Lantern firmware as I use my 6D for video work as well.
- I figured out how to tease the blue out in the sky, now I need to figure out how to make the windows "warm."

On my Mavic 2 Pro I shot them as 5 bracket shots, here is one:



And on the Canon I did them as 7 bracket shots which I liked as well.



Here is basically the same shot but with the tripod up at it's max height instead of eye level. I tweaked the colors though, maybe a bit too much, but not bad for my first crack at sky teasing.



I'll post the MP tour once it has been reviewed/approved and goes live. Client is a friend and is very happy with the work product.
Post 9 IP   flag post
Photo
Sparc
Charleston, SC
JonJ private msg quote post Address this user
@Briangruel,
I am not sure if this works with the Magic Lantern Firmware, but if you use the 2 second or 10 delay, the camera will automatically take all of the bracketed shots with 1 push of the shutter. Let me know if that works for you.
JonJ
Post 10 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
I'll research that later... Which delay are you suggesting should be set?
Post 11 IP   flag post
Photo
Sparc
Charleston, SC
JonJ private msg quote post Address this user
For ground level, I use 2 seconds. For pole photography, use 10 seconds.
Post 12 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
There are several delay settings in the camera... which one are you referring to? Time Delay?
Post 13 IP   flag post
Photo
Sparc
Charleston, SC
JonJ private msg quote post Address this user
Yes, time delay.
Post 14 IP   flag post
Photo
Sparc
Charleston, SC
JonJ private msg quote post Address this user
For those that are interested, here is a short video that I made on Pole Aerial Photography that I was referring to in the above post.

clickable text
Post 15 IP   flag post
Expertise private msg quote post Address this user
Hey Brian. You can definitely set the 6D to shoot 2/3/5 (and I think) 7 bracketed exposures without Magic Lantern.
I can't remember 100% if the 6D does 7s tho.

The timer/delay function can be accessed (and set to 2s/5s/10s) thru the Q button.

Are you processing yourself? If you do not have the LR Enfuse plug-in, you should get it.

I would be happy to share some exteriors processing tips via DM if you like. If you upload the RAW files and post a Dropbox link, I will run/edit that primary photo for you real quick as an example of what LR/Enfuse and a good recipe can do.
Post 16 IP   flag post
Standard
Member
Houston
briangreul private msg quote post Address this user
@Expertise, yes I shot 7 bracket sets. And yes I processed them myself. I'll look at the enfuse plugin.

I'm recovering from a micro-crisis Sunday at the moment. Lightning struck near the house.... nobody damaged, no burn marks, but plenty of damage to low voltage items including my NAS and security cameras. I spent all day yesterday reviving my HVAC system.
Post 17 IP   flag post
homefinders3d private msg quote post Address this user
I couldn't bring myself to read every post and so if it has already been posted I apologize lol. Photomatix has a Covid special and is giving away free licenses for their essential package - great way to try it. I have tried the in-camera Canon HDR and didn't like it. I have used Photomatix with 7 exposure AEB with decent results. I like the so called "Flambient" using a Streamlight 360 bare bulb better.

https://www.hdrsoft.com/learn/stay-positive.html
Post 18 IP   flag post
Expertise private msg quote post Address this user
Photomatix really cannot come close to LR/Enfuse for delivering clean R/E photos. And LR/Enfuse is donationware, pay what you can afford or feel is fair.
Post 19 IP   flag post
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