Using Lightroom and Aurora HDR to create a HDR Image
I was recently working on some bracketed exposures that I shot while on a walk by the coast north of Dublin. It was a beautiful and moody day, but the light was pretty strong, and I was shooting with my D700, which hasn’t the greatest dynamic range. With that in mind, I shot multiple exposures with the aim of combining them later so as not to loose any detail in the highlights and shadows. I originally tried combining the exposures in Lightroom, but I wasn’t happy with the results, so instead I decided to use Aurora HDR.
As I was going to be paying around a bit, I thought it might be worth while recording my experimenting, and so I did a screencast while I worked on the image. I didn’t narrate so there’s no voice over with this, but I did add some captions after to explain my thinking and what I was doing. It’s fairly long, so it may be boring, but you can see the process as I was doing it. As I wasn’t recording this with the specific process of making a recording, it’s not planned, so you can see my normal working process. I’m not sure if this is a valuable thing to see or not, but some people may find it interesting. Let me know in the comments if you do. Here’s the video:
If you liked this and would like me to do more of this kind of thing please like the video on YouTube and let me know in the comments if you want me to do more of these kinds of recordings.
Incidentally, if you’re wondering why I sent the corrected Tiffs to Aurora rather than sending the RAW files, it’s because Lightroom had already corrected for the lens distortion, aberration and applied the proper colour profile. If I sent the Raw I would loose most of these things, and the image would probably end up being a bit noisier. You may loose a little dynamic range doing it this way, but for the most part I find it better. I guess it depends on the image though.
I have to say, I do enjoy using Aurora HDR. It’s a pretty powerful app for creating HDRs. It took me a while to appreciate it and get the hang of it. If you want to give it a a try, they have a trial version available.
After I brought it back into Lightroom, I did a bit more tweaking. I added one of my own presets just to enhance it a bit more, and then I fixed a few things like ghosting and dust spots that I missed.
Here’s the final version of the image.
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