Rain Delay

Rain Delay

Rain DelayAction in the pits during one of the many rain delays at the 2010 NHRA Arizona Nationals atFirebird International Raceway. Three shot HDR with a new processing step to handle humans in the mix thanks to Captain Kimo.

More photos from the day can be found here (work in progress).

The image is a composition of the three shots for the HDR (-2,0,+2) with a +1 image with the saturation increased for the people.  The two images were layered with layer masks being used to bring out a good pose of each person.  Once I had a solid image of each person I cloned out the remaining areas that showed their motion.  While Captain Kimo’s process was developed for self-portraits that don’t have the human element involved in the HDR images the same technique can be applied here with similar results.

I highly recommend anyone interested in trying Captain Kimo’s technique for handling people in a HDR image start out with a simpler image (fewer people – like 1!). It is a very worthwhile technique but for an image like this is very time consuming. There are many imperfections as this was my first attempt but I like the results far better than past HDR images I’ve done that showed the motion of the people in the image. With some practice (and hopefully some day a desktop pc rather than a 15″ laptop and touchpad) this technique has real promise for handling any type of motion in HDR images. In order to make the people look like they belonged I increased the saturation in the fourth image I used to get the people from in my layer masking. Yes, completing this image took lots of layers and layer masks, but I believe it was worth it.  Total processing time was around 3 hours.

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