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Eye to Eye [Explored]

Eye to Eye, originally uploaded by big_pixel_pusher.

The dirty low down

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Reader Comments (3)


I continue to enjoy all your "artwork." I call it that because I feel that's what it is. You have a great creative eye and wonderful talents for putting these together.

So far, the cars and planes have been my favorites... but I also really like the Trollies. Bottom line they're all "Good Stuff!" Please keep up the good work and post often!

Just so you know, you've inspired me to jump back into photography. Seeing your work has got my creative juices flowing again. I'm having a lot of fun and hope to have a website up soon to showcase some of my creations. Any tips or tricks you'd like to share (Especially HDR) would be greatly welcomed. Just so you're warned, when my wife get's upset because I have to go out and buy yet another piece of gear or software I'm telling her it's "Greg's fault." :-)

Enjoying every post! Keep them coming.


August 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJack Maloney

Hello Jack,

Thanks for your kind words about my photos. I appreciate you taking the time to write. I too got back into photography after a long absence and am enjoying it tremendously.

Quite a bit of the advice I can give you refer's to owning some pretty specific software. These include: HDRSoft Photomatix, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Adobe Photoshop, Topaz Adjust and Noiseware Plugins for Photoshop. I use these tools extensively to achieve the look I want.

With that out of the way, here is some advice:

1. Use a completely zero'd out tripod to take your images. Make sure there is no chance for camera shake. Using a tripod will help you create the sharpest images.

2. Use the sharpest aperture for your particular lens. I have found several websites that have technical reviews of lots of lenses and they often specify which apertures are sharpest.

3. Shoot at your camera's base ISO. For my camera, it's 200 ISO. Many camera's are 100 ISO.

4. Take as many shots as needed to capture the entire dynamic range. I typically take 10 shots spaced at .07ev. This also tends to generate very smooth HDR images.

5. Use Photoshop's align layers function to align those images that you had to take hand held, and then use Photomatix's alignment function too. Together they work wonders.

6. Shoot in RAW format. You maintain much more dynamic range this way.

7. Reduce color noise in your bracketed shots before you merge them to HDR. (Be sure you don't remove luminous noise) Lightroom has separate color and luminous noise reduction slides as does Noiseware.

8. Photomatix has a tendency to flatten contrast. After HDR merging and tonemapping your images, be sure you adjust their contrast.

9. Consider using either Topaz Adjust or Topaz Detail plug-ins for Photoshop to enhance local contrast and detail even more. It's easy to over do this. Look at my photos for many examples of this lack of good judgement.

My wife also has to keep me in check when it comes to photography equipment. Get your website going so I can blame your photography for my spending habits!

Hope this helps and good luck with your photography.

Keep in touch,


August 14, 2009 | Registered CommenterGreg Jones


Thanks for the response!. I think I'm off to a good start. I've got Photomatix, Lightroom, Photoshop (CS4), Topaz plug-in's, but usr Topaz "deNoise" rather than noiseware. Can you "enlighten" me on the difference? I shoot everything (if possible) with a tripod, at the sharpest apertures in RAW. I've been shooting from 6 or 7 images but I like your idea of increasing that to 10. I'll get to work on that. Also, I never thought of reducing noise color prior to merging the photos in Photomatrix. I'll definately give that a try along with some curves (contrast) work.

Thanks so much for your response. Did you ever consider writing a blog or newsletter (or book)? I'd love to walk through your workflow with you!

Anyway, thatnks again and keep the photos coming.

I'll send you my web link once I get it up and running.


August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJack Maloney

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