In the middle of the Iga Hachimangu lotus pond, we have a traditional stone bridge. Er… how do you get to it?
A new toy appears
I edited this photo using the new Nik HDR Efex Pro, a plug-in for Photoshop. I normally use Photomatix for everything, and over the past 2 or so years I’ve become pretty proficient at it, but this new Nik plugin has been getting a ton of praise from all the big name pros in the business1, so I thought I should check it out. Luckily, they offer a 15 day free trial. So you can expect all my photos in the next 15 days to be from this new app.
So far, I like what I see. It was much easier to bring out the details in this shot than it would have been in Photomatix. This being my first look, I’ll reserve judgement for later. Expect a review (or mini-review) sometime after my 15-day trial ends.
At any rate, let me know what you think in the comments. Can you tell a difference between this and my “Photomatix” photos?
Daily HDR: The Lotus Bridge
As mentioned above, this is from Iga Hachimangu, the war shrine where the armies of Tokugawa Ieyasu used to go before battle to pray for success. In early summer, this pond is filled with Lotus flowers. This was taken in late August and you can see the lotus plants remain, but all the blossoms have fallen out.
The traditional stone bridge (taiko-bashi) in the middle cuts through the pond. It looks very nice, but unfortunately is closed to foot traffic so we can’t use it.
Here is the most recent one I’ve read, this one from Scott Bourne, one of the biggest pros currently around. He tries to be fair and balanced, but it’s pretty clear he loves it. ↩