Photo – International Drive Orlando Florida at Night

by Mike on December 18, 2009

Photo of the Day – Orlando Florida International Drive at Night

Shot from our 11th floor hotel window shortly after sunset, we are looking out at International Drive from the south. If you think this photo is enhanced, it is, and I make no apology. I enhanced to get closer to what I actually seeing. The enhancement took place in Photomatix.

Internation Drive Orlando Florida Night Photo

Internation Drive Orlando Florida Night Photo

I took the original photo and then created two copies; one that was 2 stops darker and one that was 2 stops lighter. I then combined them in Photomatix until I got the result we see here.

High Dynamic Range photography is designed to put into the photo what the camera cannot “see.” The human eye can see a lot more range of light than a digital camera. Without getting technical, the eye can see about 10 stops, while the digital camera can see 5-6 stops. The eye can see roughly twice the range of the camera.

HDR combines several photos at different exposures to get the full range of what the eye can see. Basically, you take 3 to 5 shots at different exposure settings to get the brightest highlights and darkest shadows at the right exposure

The software can also take a single photo and open up the range. That’s what I did here. Why? I didn’t have my tripod with me because I was flying to the Philippines the next morning and wasn’t packing it. You really need a photo to take the different exposures with the camera. Otherwise, it’s very difficult to get them aligned if you shoot hand held.

I shot this with my Olympus E-520 using the 14-42mm lens. Photo information: 1.6sec, f/3.5, ISO 400, 40mm.

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