Monday, August 12, 2013

Sunrise and Sunset in HDR

Playing with HDR.


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Photo taken at Cingjing, Taiwan.


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Photo taken at Tamsui, Taiwan.

All photos was processed using Photomatrix. Double tone-mapped.
So which one do you favourite the most?

Related post:
Playing with HDR

Monday, January 2, 2012

Trying out Fireworks Shooting

Happy New Year!!!

And we celebrate new year with fireworks.
After reading tips on how to photography fireworks from a website, took my cam and dusted tripod, joined some friends of mine at Desa Parkcity for some awesome fireworks performance during New Year Eve.

Travelling around the venue, we've spotted the forbidden area where the fireworks will be launched. So for sure, the best view spot would be directly facing the launching site, where the area was already full with people waiting for the countdown.

Not much choice left, so we choosed a slope beside a lamp post, which is a VERY BIG MISTAKE. But then, what choice do I have?
So with a little bit of test drive, tried to avoid the lamp post in my framing, but still, the flare from the light still appears in most of my photo.
Photobucket Framing using portrait style is good, with the lake included, despite all those idiots walking around.

So the fireworks begun.
At first I forgot about my ISO setting, which is at ISO1600. Noise, and too overly exposed.

Tried using ISO100, too dark.
Fireworks do not look nice too if shoot using long exposure time.
Darn those heads below... hahaa..

Then I was satisfied with ISO400. Exposure time can be set between 1s-4s, with photo properly exposed and complete fireworks.
Still, sometimes i was lost in the rhythm of the fireworks (I was using 2s timer to reduce effect of shutter pressing).

Main problem will be the smokes produced by intensely shooting fireworks until it affected the fireworks.

Then, the intensely fireworks also do not look nice in my shooting. Wonder why is that..
Probably it's because I lost the MOMENT!!! >>>which is failure to follow the rhythm of the fireworks..

In later stage I was already thinking, what the hell. Just let it shoot, I'll just keep pressing the shutter and let me enjoy the show.
And so the tips is, just let the camera there, click it, let it shoot while you enjoy the live fireworks. Hahaha..
I like this out of all shots. Fireworks fall like meteorites falling from the sky.

One of my favourite shot of the day too:
Sky with Kung Ming lantern.

And a kid sitting beside us during the fireworks performance. He looked so cute when he saw fireworks performance from another venue.

This belongs to one of my friends shooting at KLCC that day. I like her framing...

Have a very happy new year ahead!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Playing with HDR

What is HDR?

High dynamic range imaging (HDRI or just HDR) is a set of techniques that allow a greater dynamic range of luminance between the lightest and darkest areas of an image than current standard digital imaging techniques or photographic methods. This wide dynamic range allows HDR images to more accurately represent the range of intensity levels found in real scenes, ranging from direct sunlight to faint starlight.
Source: Wikipedia

In short, camera processors are dumb. They can't process light and colours as our eyes and brain functions. In times with high dynamic range, such as area with great light and darkeness together, it is very hard for the camera to snap a picture with normal exposure. Thus, HDR imaging come in place.

HDR imaging involves taking few photos with different exposure values (EV), normally -2, 0 and +2. Next, you can either uses image processing software like Adobe Photoshop or Photomatrix to combine the photos together. With some tone-mapping, the results can be interesting.

For examples,
A statue of God Monkey at Broga Temple. When we arrive, it was around 3pm with strong sun light. All shots on this statue are either sky overexposed (too bright) or the statue being too dark (underexposed). So I use exposure braketing and took three photos with exposure -2, 0 +2, combine using Photomatrix Pro 4.


From left top-bottom: EV-2, 0 +2 ; Right: HDR processed.
The result is, a normal exposed photo. Brightened details of the statue from EV+2, sky with combination of EV 0 and EV-2.

Next, an example of area with high dynamic of both brightness and colour.

It was just lousy shots before processing. I can't even recognize why did i took these shots. After combination, it came out quite impressing, with the greeneries of the forest displayed, and the 'Jesus Light' nicely displayed.

Try it yourself! Photomatrix do offers free trial.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Just a little bit of grumble too (failed version)

OK, its time to continue being a whinner.

I was expecting for a more action/movement-based competition. Its a talent show! There were so many performance throughout the peagant contest. If it's not because of the spot I stood and my gadgets I can get better shots. (sore loser's excuses...)

I'm serious. Look at the shots below:
Try to imagine how would the product be if this shot was taken from front.

OK. I admit, I don't have the skills to shoot actions like this.
I was hoping that someone in the front and centre line can have similar shots so that I can see how people take this kind of shots but I was dissapointed when the results was announced. Not-even-one-shot.

Then, can you please have some other expressions in the winning photos other than smile?
Try this. :P
OK, I know this is impolite to show this kind of shot.. haha..

Or, can at least be style and cool a bit???

OK la OK la. I know I was too nitpicking. Just let me grumble a bit although this is so long ago.
Coming up next, white balance.


Just a little bit of grumble

Its already a few months back I took these photos.
All these photos were taken during a competition organized by Sin Chew Daily, namely 阳光美少女竞赛, Sunny Girl contest. Other than the peagant-like competition, they'd also organized photography competition for all those photographers out there. Of course I've participate in the competition and attended the Selangor Final and also Grand finale. Below is my entries for the competition:

My favourite shot of the day:
Just too bad that the shutter is not fast enough to freeze the movement. A bit of blurry..

Then this:

Like the expressions of both the dancers. Face underexposed. Yes, it is time for external FLASH!!! But then where is the money??


A very graceful move. Albeit looked a bit stiff...

In the end, I didn't win anything. Well, its' a competition, if there's people winning, sure got people lose. I'm the unlucky ones, and I am not so happy with those winning photo. Most of them look like stagnant portrait photos.
The scoring criteria is based on the theme, which is sunny. I understand that but I don't see the reason of those winning photos which only focused on the face of the contestant. So who gets the center post, with an L lens (tele and sharp) wins the competition?

10 out of 13 winning photo looks like this:

Of course, their's are sharper and the contestants are looking towards them.

So tips of the day:
1. Get an L or equivalent lens.
2. Only, i repeat, ONLY grab for those center points where the contestants will look directly at you.
3. Shot only upper body. If possible, focus only the face. Do not aim for those ACTIONs...

Haih.. I looked like a whinner now...


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Recent update

Many friends asked me how come I am silenced for so long? Why no post at all? Even less album is published in facebook.
Actually I am still taking photos everywhere. Just that I've met my bottleneck:

How can I improve my shots?
What is my best field in shooting?

I don't know how do others managed it, but I'm stucked in the same situation for a long long time. No improvement in skills, composition, colour managing, and style. Noticable improvement in getting sharp image(due to 50mm F1.8 lens??), focused on target, sometimes getting the correct white balance of the photo. Throughout the shooting in this few months, I've oso noticed that I am weak in landscape photography, and many things which are not moving..

Some photos to share, taken long long time ago(credit to the model, Ziting):
1. Album Cover

2. Close up

3. Photobucket

4. A photoshop-ed photo of no. 3

5. Photobucket




9. Last photo

Most, if not all photos were shot using 50mm F1.8 lens. I like the lens very much. It offers me the sharpness I wanted. Ziting, the model did much of the job. She herself posed for the shots and I only commented on a few shots.


Monday, August 30, 2010

What is the meaning?

Again, long time since last post. Maybe this one shouldn't be a photography blog. It should be a photo-blog instead. I am too new in photo shooting, i cannot call myself a photographer. I am only a "photo-taker". I take photo. Simply taking photos everywhere. And I care too much about composition, angle, exposure, colour balance and object (well, not that I can take of that much things, just as example :-p). At the end, I forgot what a real photo means.

WHY do I take this shoot?
WHAT am I trying to show with this shot?

I don't know. I am just shooting to show the beauty of the object. There's no point of me shooting this photo. I am in deep shit...

It took me at least half an hour and 50+ shots to get this photo. A necklace i bought for my girl friend as her convocation gift. Yes it is nice. However, it is supposed to be warm and sincere.Yet it looks cold and heartless. Don't you think so?


For her convocation, I purposely brought her out one day to take her photo in her robe before she returns it. 128 shots. For me there's no perfect shot of the day. One of the better shots:


Following trips to Sg. Lembing and Cameron Highlands, I took panoramic shots again. Same mistake, same boring.

Sg. Lembing town main street panorama:


I should have included the top of the tree in the middle, and also the horizontal line.

Rainbow waterfall at Sg Lembing:


a nice shot, but not a perfect shot.

Cameron Highlands' Boh Tea Farm:


The white balance of the photo ran again...

What can I do? How can I learn?

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