HDR interior shots of Raw Vibes art gallery & dance studio

Showing both the art side and dance side of Raw Vibes in St. Petersburg

Continuing my photography work for local art community friend Laly, owner of Raw Vibes Art and Performance Space, yesterday morning I shot the interior of the art gallery/dance studio space.  I chose to do 9-bracket HDR shots at f/8.  Processing was done in Photomatix for the making of the HDR shot, then I followed my usual workflow of Aperture 3, Color Efex Pro 3 & Photoshop CS4 to edit them.  

For the above shot I was looking for an angle that showed both the art gallery side and dance studio side of the space.  Maybe having a pair of dancing shoes as a prop on the floor would have been a good idea had I thought of it at the time!

The mirrors were enhanced in this shot by using selective contrast adjustment in PS CS4

Shooting straight into the gallery was the biggest challenge with multiple track lights all at different temperatures casting different light on the walls and floor.  I chose to align my image by the floor along the back wall, knowing that has to be a true level surface.  I usually do not assume ceilings are as uniformly straight.  I made some corrections using the lens distortion filter in PS CS4.  

The "black box" room at Raw Vibes offers pole dancing classes

Another challenge was the "black box" room in the back of the space.  You may recall I made a portrait of pole dance instructor Marla on the very same pole last month.  This room was nearly completely dark, and is always very low lit.  I chose to make only a 5-bracket HDR shot of this space because even with that shutter speeds were getting very long.  The original HDR image was quite bright.  That is not how the room really is seen by people, so I burned the whole image and then added a vignette leaving the pole itself as the brighter, focal point of the image.

HDR is needed for this kind of shot to properly expose the red wall and outside the window.

The last shot is the entrance to the art/studio space.  Here I did a 9-bracket HDR image to insure I could properly expose the dark red wall on the left as well as outside the window.  A single long exposure shot would have blown out the window for sure.  The object on the right is a mirror showing the painting in the lead photo.  The mirror again was enhanced by selecting it with the magic wand in PS CS4 then adjusting the contrast on just that area, which removed glare from it.  

When shooting these types of tricky HDR shots, I put a lot of work into perfecting the final image in editing.  I nit pick over reducing a shadow slightly here, adjusting the contrast on just this area, etc.  It is a fun challenge and I really enjoy the nit picking editing process actually!