Creating a top notch photo is a combination of shooting techniques and post processing. Here is an example of a landscape image I recently took at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. The steps I went through here are similar to the work that goes into any commercial architectural or landscape image. In this case, I used a panoramic tripod head and a 45mm tilt/shift lens on my Canon 5D Mark III camera. Using the pano head which rotates on the axis of the tripod, five views across from left to right were taken.
Metering. A base exposure was determined using Aperture Priority at f/16. F/16 was chosen to optimize sharpness and focus from the foreground to the background. Metering was 1/6 seconds at ISO 250. The camera was set to record 5 exposures at 1 stop increments, two below the base exposure and two above the base exposure. This was repeated for each panoramic view for a total of 25 images.
In post processing, all 5 images in each view were exported to HDR Efex to create an image which revealed all of the highlights and shadows of the image.
All 5 HDR images were combined one panoramic image using PTGui software. A process called Optimizing was used to match points between each image.
After cropping to a 3:1 ratio, the working panoramic was uploaded to OnOne Software's Perfect Photo 4. Several different custom created pre-sets were used including Amazing Detail (sharpening), Radiance (adding contrast and saturation), as well as Summer (adding a bit of a mystical quality to the background trees). Here is the final image:
For more information: Steve Silverman Imaging 4445 W. 77th St. #130 Edina, MN 55435 952-844-0119 or 952-905-1197 firstname.lastname@example.org www.stevesilvermanimaging.com