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Hintonburg Photographer – Elmdale House Tavern

Ottawa Photographer Justin Van Leeuwen - Hintonburg's Elmdale House

It’s been a while since I posted a HDR image – mostly because I haven’t been shooting them. Some people hate the effect, some love the results. I find it’s usually pretty polarized within a few groups “photographers” and everyone else. See – photographers themselves are always polarized – which camera company, bag, lens, flash, modifier, windows or apple etc. etc. So entering a debate on how the final image is actually achieved is a sure-way to bring up debate.

Non photographers, largely, love it. They’re colourful, textured, surreal and sometimes painterly. These images can be re-interpreted by the artist a number of ways – so it’s not like all HDR’s are created equal.

Last night I went out with the intention of shooting some HDR images of my Hintonburg neighbourhood. I haven’t seen many of the hood, despite there being many “photogs” lurking around. Even moreso, there’s a huge group of “urbanites” lurking, waiting for some artistic interpretations of their neighbourhood. I hope to explore this in a series over the coming days, weeks and months.

If you’d like to see anything in particular, or want to come take some bracketed shots, or even want to diss the whole process – do so in the comments – thanks!


You can also see this bigger over on flickr.

2 thoughts on “Hintonburg Photographer – Elmdale House Tavern

  1. Eli R. says:

    I used to shoot a lot of HDR when I stared out and I couldn't believe that real photographers had not discovered this fantastic opportunity to create betterimages. A few years down the road now, and my view has changed. Totally.

    What I still like with HDR is when it is used to get more details in the shadows and highlights, like you have done in the above image. It looks real.

    What I don't like is when the disney effect becomes too prominent. Okay – if it is well done and I look through my disney glasses – I can live with it. But most of the time I feel that these photographers are just pulling sliders and don't really understand what is going on.

    My main objective is that most of these images aren't very interesting. As images alone. To me. I don't see a story. I don't see what the photographer is trying to tell me or would like to show me. I see imbalanced compositions. I see the saturation slider pulled so far that the colour is burnt out beyond recognition. I just see a person with a camera who has bought Photomatix or similar – and then thinks every snap she shoots makes her a fantastic photographer because she has this new tool.

    This point of view is what I think the HDR fans don't get. Certainly I didn't.

  2. Eli – thank you so much for the comment!

    I agree with you, so many people just "make" an HDR without concerning themselves with why, how, or if they even should. I admit when experimenting I did do this, but quickly moved towards something a bit more realistic to my own taste.

    I think HDR's work really well when you have black, a shadow, somewhere – it grounds it visually in reality.

    I hadn't shot an HDR in a year or more, but wanted to revisit it because I think it is a perfectly viable technique – it seems to appear to both my "fine art" buyers and, now, some architectural people (a HDR I shot last year just landed me a gig with a firm that builds homes and condo's!)