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Elegantly Simple Living – Bali

HDR? What’s that?

Mai and I are on a yoga retreat in a Mexican jungle. It’s 2009 and my new friend, Rob, mentions that he’s seen some fabulous photography on a website but, alas, he’s forgotten its’ name.  “It’s almost as if you can reach out and touch the scene,” he enthusiastically proclaims! Well, I’m intrigued.

taj mahal - photo by trey ratclff

Taj Mahal HDR Photo by Trey Ratcliff

A few days later, after flying back home to San Francisco, he Face-books me a link to StuckInCustoms.com, Trey Ratcliff’s unique website for unique people.  Well, I’m unique so I’m going in!

As soon as I go in, I see it.  It’s his stunning Taj Mahal HDR photo that’s one of his best (back then, 6 years ago)!  I ‘m mesmerized for minutes, taking it all in. How was this photograph done?  Even more important, how can I do it??

Maybe you’ve had a similar calling and possibly that’s even why you are here?

What’s Possible with HDR Photography?

That first HDR photograph of the Taj Mahal demonstrates to me what is now possible with modern photography! I want to be able to do THAT!

Trey’s free online HDR tutorial is quickly consumed, all the required software is gathered and so I start on the long & winding road, spanning over a year, until I’m finally able to consistently produce some nice HDR photos.  In the tutorial it looks so easy… so why was it so darn hard? Have you ever wondered the same thing yourself?

A Simpler Way to HDR

When learning HDR in 2009, at first it feels like there’s an avalanche of complicated new techniques and new software to learn & master before I’m be able to make my very own quality images on the order of the Taj Mahal. I think that an artist really needs passion and super dedication to master the tonemapping process using Photomatix Pro and then Photoshop to heal the badly behaving parts of the tonemapped image from Photomatix Pro. Not everybody has the time and/or energy for all that. Then there’s that other question coming up; “Is there possibly another easier way to make super fun high quality HDR photographs?”

The Perfect HDR Workflow

Find an easier way to make awesome HDR photos. That is my vision and my work in 2011-12. It’s almost a quest. My idea is having a super simple workflow for HDR that anybody can learn. It produces amazing quality HDR photos! It doesn’t use Photoshop nor does it require mastering intricacies of the unpredictable tonemapping method. Bottom line is; let me make great HDR photos in less than 5 minutes with super simple to use software.

August, 2012. The week that Lightroom 4 is released, I figure it out! I call it the Perfect HDR Workflow!  It’s perfect for photographers who want to make beautiful pictures quickly and without learning complicated software. Since then, it’s the workflow I use daily for all my HDR photography.

Perfect HDR Photography in Less Than 5 Minutes

It won’t take you months to learn the Perfect HDR Workflow.  It’s extremely easy and will take you only a few minutes!  After you get the minimal software needed and watch the free video coming up, you’ll be able to make Perfect HDR the first time you try!  Are you intrigued?  Me too…. let’s find out exactly what you need in order to make your very first Perfect HDR photo by the end of the day TODAY!

Contact Captain Photo

If I can help or answer a question, please let me know right here. Cheers!