Starting with HDR Photography

edited March 2012 Posted in » Canon 60D Forum
Hello Moose and Team - I am a rookie at photography and owner of a new Canon 60D. Could you please provide some tips for HDR photography please?

My gear includes...
1. Canon 75-300mm lens without IS
2. Canon 18-55mm lens
3. Canon 50mm f1.8 lens

Also please recommend any particular lens to expand my gear. Thank you - Phanindra G.V.


  • edited March 2012
    I have messed around with HDR and is still working the kinks out my self. I have list the programs I use to do my HDR's

    1. Lightroom - Import and touch up minor details
    2. Photomatrix Pro - Compose the images into one HDR image
    3. Photoshop - Adjust and correct certain areas of the HDR with my original 3 images.

    If you go online and search for Trey Ratcliff and HDR you will find some useful tips and tricks that help me get started. Hope this helps.
  • edited March 2012
    @gon1885 : Thank you for providing clues around this. I will definitely look in it. Thank you - Phanindra G.V.
  • edited March 2012
    Howdy @gvijayphani - As you probably already know, the HDR process essentially blends multiple images at varying exposures of the same scene or subject. The end result is an image with more dynamic range. The process is fairly simple...

    1. Mount your 60D to a tripod
    2. Enable Aperture priority (Av on the mode dial)
    3. Select an appropriate aperture - since most HDR shots are of landscapes, architecture, etc... you'll want to use an aperture between f/8 to f/16
    4. Set your ISO to 100
    5. Turn off Image Stabilization (if your lens comes equipped with it)
    6. Enable Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB) - You can read more about this feature on page 121 of the manual (60D PDF manual)
    7. Enable the Self-timer

    With these settings in place, half-press to focus and then fully press the shutter. The self-timer will count down allowing you to get your hands off the camera and then automatically take three photos of varying exposures.

    You then take these three exposures and process them using a dedicated HDR program, like Photomatix Pro (see here).

    When you process the three exposures, Photomatix will display some presets which will allow you to see what your HDR shot looks like with different settings in place. You can then export the HDR shot as a single image.

    From there, you can clean up noise, pump up the saturation and add a little sharpening. Lightroom (see here) is an excellent tool for this.

    As for of the most widely use for HDR is the Canon 17-40mm f/4L (see here) due to it's fantastic sharpness, color tonality and zoom range.

    Hope all of that makes sense. Happy shooting! :)
  • edited July 2012
    Hello Moose..

    My bad, I missed this. Sorry about that.

    Thank you very much for your directions here on HDR. I'm currently playing around with my Canon 60D for bird photography and portraits.

    I will rent out the 17-40mm and try out HDR. Thank you for replying on this. :)

    Phanindra G.V.
  • I would like to get into HDR photography. Should I be shooting in RAW for the 3 exposures?
    edited July 2012
    I shoot in Raw than convert to jpeg before using photomatix.
  • edited August 2012
    I have tried this several times, and I'm still only getting 1 image, not 3. Any ideas what I'm missing?
  • edited August 2012
    Moose, I followed your instructions to a T. I'm frustrated.
  • You have to press the shutter button three separate times.
  • edited September 2012
    On the 60D you have to press the menu button. Then you go to the right on the second folder of options. You will see AEB option. As Moose describes, you have to use the circular scroll button at the top of the camera to setup how many steps each picture will be under and over exposed. Then click ok and take your three photos with only one shutter button click.
  • edited September 2012
    If you are just starting out, you may want to try Luminance HDR ( It is Open Source (freeware) and does a great job. It takes the three images and blends them together.

    Photomatrix Pro is great if you want to shell out the bills ($99). But then again, if you are spending $1,000 plus on camera equipment, the $99 shouldn't be that bad. ;-)
  • edited October 2012
    I've been doing a little HDR. The exposure bracketting on camera is good to get you three pictures. If you put the camera onto timer it does three shots with different shutter speeds with one press.

    I'll second the Luminance software recommendation. It's very good and free.

    I'm also playing with DSLR Controller (a bit of Android software). You can run it on a smartphone or tablet. It gives full camera control over a usb cable so you can take more than three shots and set any exposure gap you like. It does a lot of other stuff as well like focus stacking or time-lapse.
Sign In or Register to comment.