High Dynamic Range at the High Museum of Art

posted by tucker

See what I did there? The pun in the title? Yeah, I thought you would be laughing. umm so anyway… I’ve been wanting to get an HDR of the exterior of the High Museum, where I’ve been spending a good portion of my time lately as an intern. Unfortunately the weather has been really nice, not too hot (which is good) but no rain, so the skies have not been that interesting… I dug back to the beginning of the summer, when Giacomo and I went there for the Allure of the Automobile exhibit and remembered that I’d taken a few exterior shots as we left. I picked out a bracket and processed it today, and it came out alright. I’d love to get a stormy-dramatic one, of course, but this is a more accurate representation of the place anyway, albeit aided by a circular polarizer. Also, I’ve recently gotten an iPhone 4 and have been messing around with its HDR capabilities. I have found a few things: 1) it works great outside, and looks awful in almost any indoor environment, 2) it only takes 2 shots, one dark, and one light, and merges them, and 3) it’s not the same as doing it with a true SLR camera. The third may seem obvious, but the images that the iPhone takes with HDR on really just look “better” than the original, not “different, weird, cool, and trippy” like HDRs from Photomatix tend to, and they don’t have the characteristic “glow,” increased saturation, or increased contrast. The iPhone HDRs look like the original with maybe 1 stop more dynamic range in each direction, causing me to think of it really as EDR or Extended Dynamic Range… but still, it’s a fun thing to be able to experiment with. I plan on attempting to actually take a decent picture with it and upload it here, but I’ve just been using it to see what it’s like and haven’t shot anything worth posting. Yesterday I was lucky enough to be asked to go to the uncrating of the Jeff Koons mustache that he made specifically for the Dalí exhibit at the High, and I got to watch them take the huge cast-iron thing out of the box and set up the chains and hang it. All in all it took them almost 6 hours to do… they are very meticulous! Unfortunately, due to a bunch of different reasons that mostly involve artist rights, I can’t post any of the shots I took there, but if you’re in Atlanta the Dalí exhibit and the accompanying mustache are not to be missed.

The original building, seen here, was designed by Richard Meyer and completed in 1995. The addition, peeking out to the left, was done by Renzo Piano and completed in 2005.

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