How dare you call what I do HDR!!!

So now that I am interacting with viewers of my work (at the local weekly markets) I have grown to discover how HDR photography has become a buzz word with even the amateur set.  I have no problem with my work being seen as having a high dynamic range of colors or tones – that is my goal.  

My issue is that I do not believe what these gurus call HDR is what I do.  I essentially see the light in a scene and try to capture all the 30,000 tones available so that I can essentially paint with whatever light I want (or can capture) – like a painter. 

These gurus are using software and simple bracketing to get a 32 bit image that could never be reproduced in a print.  Then using tone mapping or local-contract controls they create their HDR image with limited control based on algorithms – leaving a huge chunck of control of the image to the computer.  Click these links for one tutorial and another two tutorial.  I do not use any methods described by these tutorials.

What I do is see this new realm of photography as “Light Painting” as this is exactly how I approach my work.  I look forward to sharing much more on this topic.

What I know about HDR photography

I have always tried to bring the understanding of light to all my images and hdr photography is just some name/new way for us to label what any studied photographer wants to do each time they press a shutter. In 2003 I put together some techniques that would have been very hard to do without digital cameras. Recently I have devoted a large effort to publish the fruits of these works http://www.luminous-views.com.

I have played with some software tools that helps one create an hdr photograph but working with PhotoShop in layers on each aspect of an image seperately really gets me what I want. I am no expert in hdr photography but it will be my goal to educate myself to many who are throwing the term around and share what I learn here as I really find this work I create some of my best and want to stand by it.