In my experience gorges are the perfect spot for HDR. There’s frequently a lot of dark and very light spaces within the same frame and HDR helps to even these out so you don’t end up with a lot of really bright water and really dark rocks.
I took a lot of HDR sets when I was at Watkins the other day but so far I’ve only gotten successful HDR images at Rainbow Falls where it is really quite dark with little to no direct sunlight. The other sets I’ve been working on have the light bouncing blindingly off the rocks but with a lot of dark chasms in the background. My goal is to tone down the light and bring out the chasms. I’m making progress with my HDR/layer blending but I am by no means an expert yet!! My layer blending attempts may be the subject for a future post!
As you can see from above I tend toward the more natural HDR images. I’m not as big a fan of the “techy look” as I call it where it is obvious that the photo has been tone mapped. Although there are times where this look is appropriate to the subject I just don’t feel that look lends itself well to the natural landscapes that I tend to work with.
I did a little experiment with black and white HDR as hubby and I are looking for a shot to hang in our to-be-completed-someday kitchen and we were learning towards a black and white. However, of these two shots above hubby prefers the color one!! I’m not sure which I prefer – I might further play with the black and white to make it more natural feeling. What do you think?