HDR image


Today, due to the digital technology, there is much more things we can do which we had to give up during film era.

Strong back light such as evening sky was the typical example.

  – This is… not good at all….

Even today, if you shoot that kind of landscape, Camera tries to average the exposure and that makes the image look boring.

That was how, we all gave up that kind of image old days… but today, HDR can save it.

   – If you adjust the exposure at  sky… again, this is not good at all…

Today, lots of cameras come with HDR mode which capture multiple images with different exposure instantly, then you merge those images by using graphic software.


In this case, I used Adobe Photoshop.

  1. Open Adobe Bridge
  2. select images you would like to merge.
  3. Go Tools – Photoshop – Merge to HDR Pro…


Then, do adjustment as you want.

Too see what happens, move one at the time and remember the number before you change.


Of course, you can do the final adjustment by using adjustment layers of Photoshop.

This is just amazing…. we were never be able to get this kind of image during the film era unless you use half ND filter or something…

For this image. I used Olympus E-M10+45mmF1.8.

E-M10 has mode to merge HDR in camera, but I found it works better this way by using photoshop.

When you use HDR mode, your camera will shoot multiple image very quick and you will be surprised if it was your first time.

It would be more stable to use tripods for it, but I did not use tripods on this image.

Panorama in North Vancouver


Personally, I don’t like using wide-angle lenses especially for buildings.

They always distort buildings and I just don’t like the way it looks.

This image is a panorama merged by Adobe Photoshop.

I have been doing panorama many times on this blog… but this one is slightly different.


This is how I took 6 photos and merged later on.

Usually what people does is take from left to right and that is the end.
But if you do like this, it looks more likely to be a normal photo.
By the way, this is the single photo taken by using 14mm wide-angle lens. Well…it does not look that species and building is distorting badly… it is not good at all…

Panasonic GX1 PZ14-42mm

Travel to New York… Central Park

Central Park Panorama 1

Central Park Panorama 1

Central Park is located in the middle of Manhattan Island.

It will take several days to see whole area of this park. Due to the size, it is not easy to take landscape photos here.

But… not anymore.

It is not that hard to take panorama photos by digital cameras.All you have to do is take several photos and merge by Adobe Photoshop. 4 photos have been used for this one.

Just launch “Adobe Bridge”, then select images to merge and go to Tools – Photoshop – Photomerge. That will automatically build panoramas.


Some cameras even have panorama mode and camera does the merger by itself.

Central Park Panorama 2

Central Park Panorama 2

Autumn is the most beautiful season in Central Park. The contrast of the autumn leaves and skyscrapers behind is breath-taking…

2 images were used for this one. If you try to use wide-angle lenses, you will get all the buildings badly tilted.

Central Park Panorama 3

Central Park Panorama 3

Weather in New York seems to be changeable. Soon after this, the sun was covered by clouds and started raining.

Autumn in New York is the best time… but at the same time, the day is very short…

Wreck Beach, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Wreck Beach

Wreck Beach is not only clothing-optional beach, but also it is part of National Park.

When I was here, the evening sun was creating such a dramatic view.

But…..when I took it, it came as such a boring photos.

Wreck Beach original
This is the original of it….well….it is so boring….

So, what I did was….duplicated layer, then channel masked at the line of trees and removed sky, then created new layer between and added some cloud by using “Cloud brush”.Wreck Beach 2
It looks a bit better…but not good enough.

So,press “ALT, CTRL, Shift & E” to duplicate what I have now  and changed blending mode to “color dodge”.

Wreck Beach 3

This created dramatic sly, but all the green turned into shadow.
So, I copied the Channel mask I made before and inverted it. This is how, the blending option is working only around the sky and water.

Wreck Beach 4

It is much better…but we can make it better.

Again, press “ALT, CTRL, Shift & E” to duplicate whole things, then change blending mode to “Color Dodge”.

In that case, the green looks more dramatic, but I completely lost the sky.
This means if I mask out at the sky, it will look perfect. So, I copied channel mask which I made at the beginning and pasted to this layer.

Wreck Beach

It looks perfect.
I sometimes think digital cameras are more difficult than films due to unnecessary automatic adjustments and narrow dynamic range.

But, at least Photoshop can do lots of things like this example.

Panasonic GX1 + Panasonic 14-42mmF3.5-5.6


Adobe Photoshop_ Merge images to make better photo

Pike Place Market_ Typical street snap shot

Pike Place Market_ Typical street snap shot

Street snap shot is not easy because there are so many people walking around and there is no way to control unless you have power & money to block the street.

This is the typical street shot…..well….not too bad…. apart from a person crossing right in front of me….

Well….it was lucky at least I had another similar shot at the same place.

Pike Place Market_ Typical street snap shot 2

Pike Place Market_ another shot at the same place

This is the another one….but I think this one is less interesting. On the first image,there is a ferry at the back and people on the sidewalk are looking better than this one.

So…..lets merge those 2 images.

I put the 2nd image on top of the 1st one.
Then, go to the 2nd image layer and set a Layer Mask to mask out where you don’t want.

In this case, I only wanted the cover up the person at the right hand of the first image.

Pike Place Market_ Final

This is how I got…..

At least it looks much better than before.

During the film era, timing was everything for street shooting. But today, you we can do so many things on Photoshop. So, If you see a nice view, it is good idea to take several at the same angle. This will help you quite often.

Panasonic Lumix GX1 PZ14-42mm

Panorama by Adobe Photoshop….View of San Francisco

Panorama San Francisco from Pier 39
This is Panorama of San Francisco from Pier 39.

During film era, shooting panorama was not easy job. To get proper image, they needed special camera which had swayable lens to capture wide-angle.

In 90s, lots of point& shoot camera had panorama…..but it was just cropping top and bottom of 35mm shot. It was not panorama at all.

But with digital cameras, we can create panorama with Adobe Photoshop very easy.

To do this, it is very important to shoot the images to marge.

First of all, it is better to use tripod to keep the horizon line even.
Then, it is also important to keep “overlap” between next images.

Image 1Image2


As you see, I got plenty of overlap between images.

Also you should not zoom while shooting all the images.

Then, go to Adobe Bridge.

Choose Images you’d like to merge, then go to Tools – Photoshop – Photomerge.

That will automatically create panorama and then, you will need final adjustment.

When the merger ends, all the layer is selected. So, what you should do is…….

Press “Shift + ALT + CTRL + E”…….that will keep the original layers and create layer which is merged all the layers together……This layer is easier to do retouch.

This panorama is really depending on the quality of original images. So, if you have a nice landscape in front of you, please remember what I told here.

Panasonic Lumix GX1 14-42mm

Panorama Photo….Vancouver Downtown

Due to the flat landscape, it is very difficult to see the entire view of Downtown Vancouver.

This Panorama is created from merger of 5 different photos like I did last time.

Even the place I took those photos does not exist anymore…..

Before, I did the same thing with Photoshop CS2…..but I found It worked much better with CS5.