PetaPixel

HDR Photography Explained in a Diagram

Reddit user MacTuitui created this simple diagram (click to enlarge) explaining the idea behind HDR photography. The first low dynamic range (LDR) taken normally with a camera isn’t able to capture much of the detail found in the highlight and shadow areas of the scene. Two (or more) photographs are then taken at different exposure values to capture a wider range (the bracketing step) and subsequently combined into a single image with a high dynamic range (HDR). Since most displays aren’t capable of displaying this full range, the image needs to be tone mapped to have its appearance approximated on LDR screens.