A House Call from Tony Sweet and the Image Doctors

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You know how hard it is to get a house call from a doctor these days, right? (Relax, this isn’t going to be another political screed like the last post….although it easily could have been:-)).

Well, imagine my good fortune when I got a house call from not one, but two doctors (as well as one of the leading art photogs in the biz) last weekend!

Yes, that’s right, Tony Sweet and the Nikonians’ Image Doctors, Jason Odell and Rick Walker, were shooting in the Philly area last weekend, and I coaxed them into coming out to chez Krist for a visit.

They thought they were getting bed and breakfast, and that they did, but what really happened was that I got an amazing, in-person walk through of Jason’s and Tony’s latest e-book, The Photographers Guide to HDR Efex Pro .  HDR Efex Pro is NIK Software’s entry into the HDR world and NIK has hit a homerun.

It’s a powerful program, and so subtle that it lets you get out of the “grunge” over the top HDR stuff, and into more subtle, natural-looking HDR (thereby making it more useful to a lot of working shooters whose clients won’t buy the “HDR look” but they sure love an extended tonal range!). Of course, you can go way HDR with this software too.

While the software has that nice intuitive NIK interface, you still need a guide to walk you through it and point out all the subtleties in a clear and straightforward manner, and this e-book does just that. And if you are not good at “e-book learnin'”, Jason has created a 111-minute video based instruction module, called “Mastering HDR Efex Pro,” as well.

You can buy the e-book and the video series separately, but bundled together you save 15%. For learning software, I love the video option….it’s just so easy to have it up on the second screen, or your laptop, while you’re playing with the files on your main display.  And then having the book as a backup is perfect.

These guys, their energy, and their work just blew me away….Tony Sweet is doing such amazing things with his iPhone camera that it almost makes a DSLR redundant….proving once again that it’s the eye behind the camera, and not necessarily the camera, that makes the picture.

Tony’s getting ready for his workshop season, and from what I briefly experienced of his teaching, his energy, his eye, and his mellow nature, those are going to be some kickin’ workshops.

When it comes to the world of HDR, I’m glad to report that the doctors are in….and that is just so Sweet!

 

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11 Comments

  1. Jim Donahue March 2, 2011 at 2:36 am #

    Hello out there in Photography Land. Does anybody out there know where you can find a Photography blog about the in’s and out’s of making images with a Camera? Ya know one of those black boxes with a piece of glass in the front and you press a button on top and it goes click and the picture you just took is on the back and then you figure out what ypou did right or wrong. I just would like to learn abt taking pictures with my camera and not have to stay up all night long foolin with this computer. HELP!!!!!

  2. Bob Krist March 2, 2011 at 2:47 am #

    Ah, sorry Jim. After blogging twice a week for over two years, and writing a column for over 20 years, about shutter speed, aperture, filters, and the like, there’s really not too much more I have to say in that department.

    Add to that the fact that I’m personally deep into exploring the video medium for my work, and I’m plumb out of how-to ideas about traditional photography.

    Give me some help here. What specifically would you like to read about?

    cheers, Bob

  3. GlenF March 2, 2011 at 9:49 am #

    Meet you half way Bob – how would I make my first timelapse?

    How can I get rid of CA? (Those bands) and how can I avoid it?

    Tell me why so many people are excited about the new Fujifilm x100?

    How do you know when you have reached this point with HDR?
    http://i.imgur.com/b2feF.png

    • Bob Krist March 2, 2011 at 1:37 pm #

      Thanks Glen, Those are good ideas (and I’m glad, when you ask about getting rid of CA, that you didn’t mean California!). Love the graph!

    • Chris March 3, 2011 at 10:22 pm #

      I can answer the Fujifilm X100 question. People are extremely exited about it for many reasons, the controls on the body (and the body style in general) which come stright from old film rangefinders. The fixed focal length high quality lens (also common in old rangefinders). An APS-C sized sensor (the biggest sensor in a “point-and-shoot” yet). It is like a work of art that can also take amazing photos.

      • Chris March 4, 2011 at 8:00 pm #

        You can even screw a shutter release cable into it!

        • Bob Krist March 5, 2011 at 4:30 am #

          Okay folks, but before we get too excited, I’m just going to say one thing—-remember the Sigma Dp-1! Promised all the same stuff, but…..these days, I try not to get excited about vaporware. Until you get the working model in your hands, it’s all promise, promises!

  4. Jason Odell March 2, 2011 at 7:29 pm #

    Hi Bob,

    Thanks again for having us over this weekend! Next time, we’ll do some shooting with just a camera! 😀

    Here’s a shot that I got Sunday morning at Fonthill.

    -Jason

  5. Russ Bolt March 6, 2011 at 10:02 pm #

    Bob –

    Did a HDR project a year or so ago here in Boston. An island fort I love to visit and could only capture with HDR. Have always disliked the ‘HDR look’ but was able to get what I wanted. It really has its place. I know it won’t be long until I laugh at all the time I spent when it can all be done in-camera.

    Check it out.

    http://www.russbolt.com/RUSS_BOLT/Projects.html

    – Russ

  6. tony sweet March 8, 2011 at 1:11 pm #

    Thanks for the generous blog post, Bob. Much appreciated, especially from someone of your stature! Looking fwd to the next time!

  7. mansoor April 30, 2011 at 8:54 am #

    In my opinion be beautiful if you can, wise if you want to, but be respected – that is essential.Is it true?
    curt
    Nike 6.0

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