The Easiest Way to Blend Focus and Exposure in a Single Image

Do you want to get pin-sharp photos with amazing dynamic range every time? Then, use this very simple technique.

When you're out in the field and feel like you have a wonderful opportunity to nail a really great shot because of the conditions, light, or scenery at that particular moment, there are a number of things you need to get right. Of course, composition is a big one, and you need to decide how you're going to frame your shot to get all of your desired elements in the correct position. You also need to decide on whether you'll shoot in portrait or landscape orientation. Honestly, the list is long, but two of the most important things you must get right are exposure and focus. But how can you get tack-sharp photos with amazing dynamic range throughout your image in a simple, uncomplicated manner?

That brings us to this great video by Nigel Danson, in which he explains how he gets pin-sharp images with wonderful dynamic range every time. He explains how he blends exposures and whether to use bracketing or not, as well as where he typically focuses if he wants to do some focus stacking in post-production. In the video, he uses both Lightroom and Photoshop for his editing and walks you through all the necessary steps you need to take in order to get a perfectly exposed image throughout the frame that is also sharp from corner to corner. Give it a look.

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3 Comments
Lee Morris's picture

I can't believe I've never actually tried the "merge to HDR" feature in Lightroom before.

Iain Stanley's picture

I've played around with it a bit but this video brought it back to the front of my mind.

00rob00 Rob00Rob's picture

How does this differ from depth of field bracketing ND then blending the photos together?