Limmer's Workbench

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    The main workbench at Limmer & Sons Custom Boots in Intervale, New Hampshire.

    You might recall this location from other images, "The Bootmaker", "They Never Call", and "Homeless", among others. Let's suggest that it's a target-rich environment for an HDR photographer.

    When talking to Pete Limmer last fall, he had mentioned that some of those earlier pictures were “very detailed.” I never really found out if that was a good thing, or not, but for this image I thought I’d hedge my bets by presenting a more realistic, less ‘hyper’ image. In fact, I had processed this scene some time ago and kept it on file, but when I opened it up for review, it was sort of an assault on the eyes. So, I reprocessed it completely to come up with this version.

    I’m planning to create a new video tutorial soon, titled something like, “Why Photomatix Pro alone isn’t enough.” Often, when trying to come up with a realistic-looking HDR image, Photomatix falls short for me — I find that the output can often be soft. Other programs such as HDR Expose (from Unified Color) or ImageFuser tend to be better choices, although I almost always wind up blending in some Photomatix versions before doing more detailed processing. For this version, I started with the output from HDR Expose, adjusted it using 32-Float, and then layered in a Photomatix tonemap at 24% Normal and a Shadowmap at 22% Hard Light as a base before setting about with other adjustments (brightness, skew, de-fringe, etc.) and filter techniques (Nik Color Efex Pro.)

    In the end, I think it created a balance between the high-detail of a very complicated environment, along with a good dose of realism. I also really appreciate Peter and Ken letting me into the back of the shop during working hours to capture this unique scene.

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    Kris Kros, Captain Kimo, wishiwsthr, and 4 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. Glenn Anderson. 77 months ago | reply

      Love the POV. Nice treatment as well.

      Seen in my contacts' photos. ( ?² )

    2. Captain Kimo 77 months ago | reply

      Very cool Rob.

    3. halting scarf [deleted] 77 months ago | reply

      Beautifully colored workbench w/ superb detail !!! --- Rod

    4. Tom Lussier Photography 77 months ago | reply

      Plenty to look at in this one Rob! Very nice results. HDR Expose huh? May have to look into that. :)

    5. Paula Cheese 77 months ago | reply

      Lovel work bench. I like how the blue colours catch my eye almost instantly. Great work Rob.

    6. simon james_f 77 months ago | reply

      Hi Rob, I've been looking into combining the outputs from PM and another HDR program too so it'll be interesting to see a tutorial from you. I've watched your tutes on youtube and they are amongst the best I've seen, particularly in terms of their pace and how detailed your explanations are. Great work here BTW! Cheers :)

    7. Rob Hanson Photography 77 months ago | reply

      Thanks, Simon. I appreciate your comments and support. Now I'll be extra sure to follow through on the new tutes.

    8. Dan Cselinacz Photography 74 months ago | reply

      wow brother! all I got to say on that! lol

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