Museum Field II

Sunset over the museum gardens in York, UK. Another version of the same sunset seen in another picture, but from further back. It always amazes me how the light changes as the sun gets closer to the horizon. What would otherwise be a dull, flat scene becomes something more, entirely because of the light.

Three shot HDR, tripod mounted.
Processed in Photomatix Pro 4 and Photoshop CS4.

Sunset in Autumn

by Tim Daniels -


Sunrise over a misty field. This was the start of one of the hottest days of the year, and also one of the longest. Although you only tend to see this kind of ground mist in the Autumn and Winter months, it is present throughout the year. Particularly, it seems to appear at the start of what will be very hot days. Generally, you don’t tend to see this mist though, as it is very quickly burnt off by the heat from the sun within less than 30 minutes of sunrise. As this picture was taken at about 5.00 am, you have to get up pretty early to see the mist.

This is a three exposure HDR, which required a fair amount of curves work to get the colours and relative brightnesses of the scene correct. In particular, the leaves on the tree were very dark, and there wasn’t a whole lot of contrast throughout the scene. Luckily, all these problems are easy to fix with a little know-how.

Sunrise over a recently mowed field

by Tim Daniels -

Clock Tower

A clock tower rises above the surrounding buildings. I had intended to get a more closeup view of this tower, but on getting closer to it, found that there appeared to be no way of accessing it. Presumably, you have to go through an adjoining building. Luckily, the narrow alleyway I was in allowed me to show the tower in its surroundings, which I think has given a much better image than the one I originally envisaged.

I used Nik’s Silver Efex Pro to convert this to black & white, with some increased structure, brightness and contrast on the clock tower and the illuminated building, as well as just increased structure on the clouds.

Looking up at a clock tower

by Tim Daniels -


Speeding down a tree lined avenue. There seem to be a lot of long, straight single laned roads around. A great number of them are also lined by trees. Whenever I come across one of these in Autumn, I always make sure to get some kind of picture, but it can be difficult to think of new ways of shooting this kind of scene.

In this case, I though a nice bit of blur would make the picture complete. Of course, it is added in post-production, as shooting thrree exposures for an HDR whilst moving is a little bit more than difficult. I masked the blur through, so that it is on full for the road surface, but slightly reduced for the trees so that you can see the trunks and branches.

by Tim Daniels -

Oxborough II

Another view of Oxborough Hall in Norfolk, UK. Although bright, sunny days are generally considered bad for photography, it certainly is possible to pull something interesting out of the bag. The advantage of shooting HDRs like this is that you can make the sun a strong feature in the shot, whilst keeping detail in the rest of the sky and any other objects of focus. If you were to use filters instead, this kind of shot would not be easily possible.

I hand-held the three exposures for this again and let Photomatix match them up. It did an excellent job. Even looking at 100% it is impossible to tell that this wasn’t shot using a tripod.

by Tim Daniels -

Oxborough Hall

The entrance to Oxburgh Hall in Norfolk, UK. This is a moated medieval manor of some size, all made of this same kind of brick. This shot was taken on the bridge over the moat, at the only position you can cross to access the internal courtyard. It was a busy place and took some waiting before I could take this without getting any people in, but I think it was worth the wait.

This was something of an experiment for me, as I shot three exposures for HDR hand held. Usually, I would use a tripod for this, but after seeing other peoples’ hand held work on Flickr, I thought it was worth a go myself. It turns out that the alignment algorithm in Photomatix 4 is much better than the one I remember in version 3. Although there was noticeable movement between each of my three exposures, Photomatix easily dealt with it. From the final result, you would assume this was taken with a tripod. Knowing that I now don’t have to take one every time I go out will save me several kilos of equipment and will hopefully mean I can get even better pictures.

by Tim Daniels -

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