How I Got The Shot


New feature for my website, How I Got The Shot – borrowed from my Instagram feed (@AnthonyMorganti).

*Click on the image to enlarge

Some scenes demand some type of exposure blend – scenes that have a lot of dynamic range often cannot be captured by a single exposure due to the limited exposure latitude of the camera – I’ve found this is often true for the inside of churches. Actually, when shooting the inside rooms of any building with windows, it’s often impossible to shoot a single exposure where the windows are not blown out so exposure blending is common in these instances – exposure blend is a real estate photographer’s best friend.⁣

In the case of the Our Lady of Victory Basilica in Lackawanna, New York, the nave and sanctuary are rather dark yet the stained glass windows are very bright. A single exposure likely would not have been able to capture the tonal depth of the scene. If I exposed for the interior, the windows would have blown out. If I exposed for the windows, opening up the shadows in post would have resulted in too much noise. Hence, I blended a three image HDR.⁣

HDR Details⁣

Shot five images, one properly exposed for the interior then two underexposed, each one stop apart, and two overexposed, each separated again, one stop apart –> -2, -1, 0, +1, +2. Ended up using the -2, -1, and 0 exposures for the HDR merge. Combined in Lightroom and all processing done in Lightroom. Outside of the HDR merge, nothing really out of the ordinary.

Gear and Settings

Nikon D800e with Nikon 14-24mm F2.8 Lens⁣⠀
Auto White Balance⁣⠀
Single Point Focus – AF-S ⁣⠀
Release Mode: Continuous high – 4 frames/sec – bracketed the three images all at once.⁣⠀
Handheld. Cannot use a tripod in the nave.⁣⠀
Aperture Priority Mode – Spot Metering⁣⠀
Bracketed shutter speed: 1/320, 1/160, 1/80, 1/40, 1/20 – used the first three for the HDR merge, F8.0, iso: 3200 at 14mm⁣⠀

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