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Fighting my urge to sleep in after a long week of shooting, I didn’t exactly jump right out of bed on time. Throw in the uncertainty of reaching and scouting a new location, I had to hustle to stay ahead of sunrise. My heart was pounding by the time I arrived to this overlook, but it wasn’t long before it settled as I looked over the placid water into the first color of the crisp morning sky.

This HDR image was edited using ACR for RAW processing and Lumenzia for 32-bit dodging & burning with luminosity selections, exported as an HDR image using Web Sharp Pro, and then converted to an HDR video using Final Cut Pro X for Instagram. 

Note that if you are viewing on a computer which supports HDR (such as an M1 MacBook Pro using Chrome), the image above will show as an HDR AVIF. However, if your computer does not support it, then you will see an SDR (standard dynamic range) JPG. The SDR image is optimized to look as good as it can within the limits of those displays, but the HDR is definitely a more compelling image. If you have an iPhone, you can view this image as HDR with the Instagram link below.

I’ve also been experimenting with posting these HDR images on Instagram. Technically, it isn’t supported. But you can convert an HDR photo to an HDR video and that is supported. There are many limitations (HDR is only shown when viewing full screen on an iPhone and the IG overlays only disappear if you click and hold on the screen), but it’s still interesting to have a way to share HDR images on these great mobile screens. I would rather just host my own images and bypass these limitations, but we don’t yet have support for mobile browsers to show HDR images on iPhones / iPads. Hopefully that will change soon.

Greg Benz Photography