I’m dreaming of an HDR Christmas

Last night I got the bug to try something I’d seen before – the classic Christmas-y look with a score of music and a shallow depth of field.  It was straightforward enough and after putting a piece of sheet music on the piano, and trying it that way, wasn’t getting the drop off in depth-of -field as I had hoped for.  So, I took a different approach and put the music sheet flat on a table, knowing the dof would drop off that way, with the foreground out of focus and receding off in the background too.

So, the second one came out okay, but the plain background of the table didn’t really work all that well…it needed something else – Christmas lights!  So, I got an extra garland that wasn’t used in the house and threw that down, encircling the paper.  But something was still missing…a little color.  What goes with green and white?  Red!  Enter a blanket strategically placed underneath it all to add a touch of color.  So, took a few shots, and liked it, but the shadows seemed kind of muted, and the lights were getting a little blown out.  Hmmm…could I be dreaming of an HDR Christmas?

An HDR Christmas

An HDR Christmas

The fact that the little star burst off the one light happened was purely incidental, but I think helped the overall composition.  How about the reading audience?  What are your thoughts?  Does it work?  Need something else?  What about your own holiday-themed work?  Feel free to share thoughts, feedback, samples and such in the comments!

In other Friday news, CB now has a Facebook fan page, so if you get a minute – stop by the Facebook page and sign up.  I’ll be sharing more photos, tips, tricks, and such there in the weeks to come as well, and you won’t know unless you’re a “fan”!  For those of you getting your news from the feed, the direct link to the Facebook page is here.

Don’t forget, the December Giveaway is also still underway – over $400 of super cool prizes including software, books, prints, and papers!  Just a cornucopia of prizes, all waiting to be given away for free! Just enter your photo at the Flickr thread:  December Giveaway. The theme this month is GIVING. Interpret however you like and good luck to all.  The rest of the contest details are here.

That’s about it for this Friday – have a great weekend everyone! Going on a sunrise shoot in the mountains tomorrow wit the Meetup group here in Denver, so it is going to be an early riser for me tomorrow.  Start time of 4am!  More on that next week!  Happy shooting and we’ll see you back here on Monday!

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4 comments for “I’m dreaming of an HDR Christmas

  1. December 11, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    great shot .. found from Twitter .. I may have to try this shot (or something close to it) in the future when I have some extra time..

    thank you for sharing your insights your blog has been bookmarked.
    .-= corbin´s last blog ..Acer Aspire One Powers on but the screen remains black how to fix =-.

  2. December 12, 2009 at 8:32 am

    Love the shot Jason. I did a similar piece for a marriage license recently. If you didn’t know, I’m a depth of field junkie. Playing with focus and depth of field is a favorite hobby. Rarely put it on my website because it’s my little project. But I’m digging this one. Maybe I’ll pop up that wedding license soon just to share.

    Great use for HDR too!

  3. ldgraham
    December 12, 2009 at 2:19 pm

    Nice HDR but I think the lights draw the eye away from your point of focus. Why not take the lights out of the shot – place one above the focus point (out of the picture) and reshoot? This would lighten the point of focus and the eye should be drawn to both the lightest point and the point of optimal focus.

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