Friday, January 25, 2008


after several weeks of not doing much with photography, I'm back at it. for some reason, the hours of 4-7am have been my photo-editing hours. weird.

a lot of people ask me about HDR, how I do it, what my technique is. to be completely honest, I'm still figuring out how I do it. I make a lot of mistakes and every now and then I get some that I think I like. the new header, and the following 3hree photos are some I've been working on this morning.


emily said...

HDR--you take multiple exposures of a subject and somehow in the editing process you combine them? I've just read about it a little...I'm not sure I really know what it is, but I'm curious b/c I think it's what makes the colors so vivid and stark, right?

What program do you edit your photos in?

My fav of these is the bottom, showing the red of the house. Where is it taken?

Brian T. Murphy said...

emily - yup. HDR = "high dynamic range", and like many things with photography, there's lots of different ways to do it. most often, I use auto exposure bracketing and the camera takes multiple photos at different exposure settings. sometimes I do it all manually, but it's harder because I'll end up nudging the camera too much and the frames won't line up.

the biggest thing with HDR (to me) is it makes the light spots really lit up, and the dark spots really dark (because of blending the exposures) so you get a shot not usually possible with one single photo. it's fairly exciting.

HDR is more of a light / dark / contrast thing. the vivid colors is more of a BTM obsession thing because I really love color, because when I look out at the world, I see a LOT of color.

so, I usually do my HDR processing / tone mapping in photomatix, and then I dump the processed photos into lightroom where I optimize colors, crop, edit for infinity, etc.

or as t.scott says, where I take the color saturation levels to the maximum (not necessarily true).

these shots were all taken out at the black warrior river, just west of tuscaloosa, on monday of this week.

Carla Jean said...

Brian, I might be obsessed with the tree picture. Also, I sent the full-size link to Jenny, Robin and Mary Ellen, and Robin immediately asked, "Is that a Brian T. Murphy picture?"

Ang said...

they are amazing!!!! great work!

spitballarmy said...

Love the river shot, B.

katie said...

eerie and beautiful.

brett said...

your hdr work has gotten really good. i wish i had auto-exposure bracketing. besides the lens auto-focus support frustration with the d40, that's my only other complaint about it. i really want the d80. actually i really want the d300 so i will most likely be stealing yours.

Aaron said...

wow. nice man.

Kari said...

I think you and T.Scott should have a gallery opening and show your photography. I'm serious!

Courtlan said...

Unbelievable pics coach. You've done very well for yourself. Now I'm going to steal your pictures and claim them for myself. Because I do a lot of HDR work. I even know what it means: high dynamic range. See?... said...

I like the first one, it seems to have a broader color palette and a deeper tonal range. And I would definitely come to your gallery show.

By the way, in the photo on your header you look like French DJ before a club date chilling out in a cheap Hotel in Berlin. You're probably listening to Daft Punk or something.

Brian T. Murphy said...

CJ: thanks. Brooke like the tree one the best too. I really liked that one but wasn’t sure. I think it would be pretty killer blown up. And I get that idea from robin, of course.

Ang – hey, thanks, and good to hear from you.

Spitballarmy – thanks. I was kind of worried it had too much color, but I think I like it. Also, sorry I didn’t make it by, like I said I would. I got the package you sent. Thanks.

Katie – cool. You take some pretty nice photos yourself. And perhaps we’ll meet in a few days?

Brett – yeah those would be two reasons to upgrade. The D40 is a great camera as long as you don’t want non digital lenses and don’t care for HDR.

Aaron – thanks.

Kari – I know I know…it would be fun. Maybe we can do something like that. I’d want to do it at bare hands, and it would need to be some sort of fundraiser or something. Maybe a wine tasting / art showing, and we’d need a few more people to contribute beyond me and tscott. And also, tscott is way better than me so maybe someone other than tscott.

Court – always good to hear from you, man. And thanks for keeping the dream alive, and always calling me coach. I love it. Also, please keep sending me IM’s from around the globe.

Tsc – the river shot? I’d think you think it was too colorful. And I like your French DJ description. You actually aren’t far off…

Courtney said...

Is it OK that I just set the river as my desktop. I like it A LOT. I'm with ya on the vivid color thing.

Kelly Park Photography said...

These are beautiful. Claudia Wootton referred me to your blog. I enjoyed checking out your images! You have some amazing shots here!