Today is International HDR Day

That's right, June 26 is International HDR Day as proclaimed by Rick Sammon and Trey Radcliff. June 26 also happens to be International Day against Drug Abuse and the International Day in Support of Torture Victims. Coincidence or clever planning?

Trey Radcliff and Rick Sammon are both authors of HDR books (here and here), both leaning towards the surreal-artistic side of HDR imaging. Some may argue Trey and Rick are largely responsible for promoting the overbaked "HDR Look", characterizing HDR as a trendy thing that you can agree or disagree over. It's true, funky styles do put HDR in the public spotlight. First reaction is always "woooaaaa". And by the time you've seen 100 images with this look, you either fell completely in love with it, or you're bored out of your mind and hate it.

The problem with that is, most people never even get to the point to discover that HDR is more than a one-trick-pony. If you go all the way, and really make use of a 32-bit pipeline, you will discover that there are serious advantages of an HDR workflow: truly lossless image editing, full exposure control, mastering any scene contrast without the need for artificial lighting, even down to fully preserving the light in scene so it can be virtually revisited anytime in the future. These things make a big difference for commercial real estate photographers, compositors, VFX artists, anyone with the need to take full control of an image.

Anyway, in celebration of the International HDR Day Trey and Rick invite everyone to submit one image to the DPExperience Flickr Group. Full contest details here. They will nominate a winner, that will receive a signed copy of their books. Which are useful as inspiration for beginners, just make sure you don't get stuck at the "Look ma, I'm creative" level.

No matter how different my view on what HDR is all about, there's one thing that I completely agree with Rick and Trey: HDR should be fun. And I believe everyday should be HDR Day. So here is my contest entry:

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