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Coca Cola on the Streets of St. Charles

The combination of old bricks, turn of the century advertising on those bricks, and famous brands of America and the world are a nice combination of AWESOME for my HDR photography. 😉

street, street art, street nostalgia, lost and found, time gone by, coca cola, coca cola advertisement

What do you like to shoot? Do you have a favorite subject or genre?

I am particular to landscapes from the Pacific Northwest, real estate photography, and street life or street nostalgia photography. You can grab this one framed for your favorite space today.

This was captured as a bracketed 3 shot capture with my new Nikon D750. You can read about the end of the line for my old Nikon D600. Awesome camera but it’s days were numbered. 🙂

Side note: Just gotta say I am loving my new Nikon D75o. This one will shoot up to 7 frames from merging into Photomatix and an HDR image.

Anyway… here are my hand held RAW images from which I created my HDR masterpiece above.

street art, street advertisement, HDR, coca cola, coca cola ads

ISO 100 | 24mm | f 3.5 | 1/20th of a second

street art, street advertisement, HDR, coca cola, coca cola ads

ISO 100 | 24mm | f 3.5 | 1/80th of a second

street art, street advertisement, HDR, coca cola, coca cola ads

ISO 100 | 24mm | f 3.5 | 1/320th of a second

My process formal HDR process included pre-editing in LightRoom, then a merge into Photomatix Pro 6.0, and finally some fine tuning in NIK Color FX 4.

I am super happy with the final outcome. What do you think?

One of my best discoveries lately is centered around the Google NIK software… it’s a free download. Here is a tutorial for the software.

My review is… it works great, however I prefer the master of HDR processing… Photomatix Pro 6.0. This one will cost you about $130 bucks.

However… if you are pressed for cash and really want to create some great HDR images, then NIK HDR EFEX Pro 2 will do the trick. Download NIK HDR EFEX Pro 2 absolutely free by clicking here.

Ultimately… I hope you enjoy the process of capturing your best compositions and creating HDR art that fits your personal style.

Please bookmark and swing back around to see what else I am working on and let’s engage in some HDR talk!



P.S. I choose and trust Photomatix Pro as my HDR editing software of choice. It is the Mercedes of HDR editing. Get Photomatix Pro here and enter ‘hdrbyspencer’ for a 15% discount.

Never doubt how good you really are

Today my post is not all about me. Today my post is all about another talented HDR photographer.


I was trolling through the search engines looking of other HDR photographer when stumbled upon this HDR blog.

The photographer was talking about how he almost gave up on photography. He indicated he was lacking confidence or not feeling worthy… or some non-sense like that! I disagree.

I felt his work was fantastic. The photographer even gave us a “blow by blow” of how he edited his HDR photo titled Sunset in Manarola. Go ahead… check it out BUT promise to come back. Please and thank you.

Sunset in Manarola

I am sure you read all about how he edited the image to reduce the warmth of the photo. I was intrigued by all the sliders, filters, and software he is using to create his masterpiece work.

YES. I said masterpiece work. I do not find his photo bored, dull, or not worthy at all. I find it stunning, amazing, even graceful.

Are you a photographer that doesn’t feel worthy of sharing or even selling your work? I have been there just like the photographer above. It is alright to get to that place… to plateau… but NEVER NEVER NEVER EVER quit.

Just a little advice…

  1. Take a breath. If you need to set the camera aside, do so. But come back soon.
  2. Check your mindset. Are you a critic? Try flipping the self-talk into something more positive, uplifting, and needle moving for your art or even hobby.
  3. Practice, Practice, Practice. – Yep. You want to be better than average? You want to be great or stand out in a field of millions with a camera. You gotta believe first and practice daily second. Keep shooting. Keep editing. Keep believing. And keep on keeping on.
  4. Share with the world. Who cares if a photos bombs or comes out looking not quite right. I have created some disasters myself. But I keep creating. And I keep seeking feedback from the world. And the best feedback I get is when someone likes my art enough to purchase a piece for their favorite space.

Just a few items that I think will help when the mind gets invaded by what I call the drunken monkey. You know that fictional being inside your mind that fills you with doubt and squashes all your good thoughts.

Set him aside. Take a moment to make a deal with yourself. Here is the deal…

For the next 30 days you will create one new photograph per day. You will edit it the best you can. Finally, you will share on social media or some other outlet and let the world decide on your talent.

Who knows… You may just be surprised with awesome reviews. And what will that do to your self-image. 😉



P.S. I choose and trust Photomatix Pro as my HDR editing software of choice. It is the Mercedes of HDR editing. Get Photomatix Pro here and enter ‘hdrbyspencer’ for a 15% discount.

Bryan Hall at Washington State University

wsu, washington, washington state university, bryan hall, e.a. bryan, enoch a. bryan, 1890, 1893, 1909, university, college, pullman, palouse

On March 28, 1890 Washington State University was established by the Washington Legislature. Washington State University is located in Pullman WA and today boast an undergraduate enrollment of 24,470 and a total enrollment of 29,686 according to a recent U.S. News & World Report.

WSU is second in population only to University of Washington.

Purchase WSU Bryan Hall for your art collection

Visit my WSU Collection

And the most noted structure on the campus is Bryan Hall. This building was built in 1909 and was named after the first president of WSU… Enoch A. Bryan.

Bryan Hall was originally the principal library and assembly hall. Today the Bryan Hall is primarily used for International studies and some music course.

… and most fascinating about this building is the ghost story that is attached to the namesake.

A story worthy of Ghost Hunters.

Stage manager, Richard Uthmann, in the fall of 1957 reported ghostly activity in the storage area of the drama department.

On one occasion he visited the storage area which held Enoch A. Bryan’s old rocking chair. He was instructed to leave it where it sat in the middle of the floor, as that was Mr. Bryan’s chair and it was to remain undisturbed.

Later, Richard visited the storage area by himself and report strange happenings. Here is his encounter as reported in this article.

“The next time I went up into the loft alone, the chair was out in the open, so I put it over with the other chairs and went on the fix the lights. It was late at night and I was sure no one else was in the building since the janitor left as I came and reminded me to lock the doors when I left. As I worked on the lights (they were carbon arc and very hot) I heard the fire door open and close, but saw no one there. I figured it was just the janitor checking on me and ignored it. A moment later I got really cold, even shivering, even though I was standing right over the hot light. Then the cold sensation passed and I finished the rest of the lights quickly. When I went back through the fire door, the chair was sitting in the middle of the floor, rocking. I watched for a minute, but it didn’t stop. The air around it was cold, but I wasn’t brave enough to touch the chair.”

So chalk this up to one more ghost reported building in Washington State. These things really intrigue me.

I am hoping to get back to WSU one more time this year. While there I would love get into this famous old core WSU building to see and photograph the interior, especially the clock tower.

And if possible… to see, touch, and sit in the rocking chair. Ewww, hairs on my arms standing straight up. Maybe I will just look at the chair.



P.S. I choose and trust Photomatix Pro as my HDR editing software of choice. It is the Mercedes of HDR editing. Get Photomatix Pro here and enter ‘hdrbyspencer’ for a 15% discount.