HDR helps you understand exposure better so you can shoot better video.

I am not very good at HDR (High Dynamic Range Photography), but I like to keep working at because he helps teach me more about exposure. I’m learning to look deep into the shadows more and see what they look like from an exposure point of view.

I think HDR helps you become better at DSLR video because you are peering in to the shadows a lot more, and understand more about light.

I really like all of Trey Ratcliff’s work (I follow his RSS feed) and I use his HDR tutorial, however I can never seem to get his results. So it is much trickier than it looks in his tutorial. I can tell you about several other people that have tried it a few times and also had the same experience I have had.

If you haven’t tried it you can try it for free to see if you are any good at it. Download Photomatix for free and Lightroom too. I promise it will help your DSLR video skills by just trying a few shots and understand what makes a good HDR image.

HDR View Out of My Office Window


I get many people asking me about how I light my videos in my office. I think of this sliding glass door as my huge softbox when I am filming myself for this tutorials. I use a reflector too and that is it for lighting. Natural lighting it my friend.

When we bought this house a few years ago I wanted to change the look of my office but I have been too lazy to do so yet, so the wall paper and paint is definitely not me.

My HDR Checklist Before I Shoot

  • When shooting with the sun -3, 0, +2 –
  • Use bracketing -2, 0, +2 (use select button to set bracketing from exposure comp)
  • After you shoot look to see if the shadows have enough detail
  • 2 Second self-timer mode
  • Use tripod
  • Wait for the wind to stop if lots of trees
  • Manual focus
  • Set to Aperture Priority mode ‘Av’.
  • Shoot between F5 and F13 on anything fixed (lens).
  • After Lightroom file/export to Photomatix
  • Read http://www.stuckincustoms.com/hdr-tutorial-part-2/ over and over until I get it right!


Broken Glass in Old International Truck

Bobcat 751 HDR

Shout-Out to Dave Knop (Knoptop)

Big thanks to Dave Knop for his donation this week (my third one so far). I really appreciate it Dave! Check out Dave’s videos on Vimeo. I enjoyed is HAGUE MMC – Mini Motion-Cam Stabilizer video.