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The German ME163 Komet was a rocket-propelled fighter. Way too advanced for it’s time in WWII. Imagine zipping past your enemy without time to aim or fire. Still, it’s a funky looking thing.

Now For Something Completely Different

It’s nice to have a post this week with something else to discuss besides my web site problems! If there is anything good that came from it, perhaps it’s material for an ebook on hosting and security.

The truth is that I was eager to put that behind me and work on some something colorful. While scanning my Travel library, I found myself struck by this image because of the blue tile wall and the gritty texture of the German ME163 Komet. It seemed like a perfect choice for getting back to Photomatix.

Lately, I’ve been processing my HDR images as 32-bit TIFFs using Photoshop’s HDR Plus. Then I’d tweak them in ACR, and finally finish them off in Photoshop. That process creates images that most people assume are more natural in appearance, and I really do like the results. Sometimes, I want something a bit more painterly and just a bit out-there. That’s when I usually go back to Photomatix.

That’s not to say you can’t create images in Photomatix that aren’t painterly. I did some interior photography for a local amusement business and processed the results in Photomatix. It looked exactly like a single, well-lit exposure. Of course, the natural truth is that the interior was anything but well lit, but that’s what we’re expected to overcome.

The German ME163 Komet

Reading about the ME163 Komet history is just fascinating to me. It was very fast, short duration and highly manueverable. On the other hand, it wasn’t pressurized. That meant the plane could only perform as much as the pilots could ensure. Apparently gas in the gastrointestinal tract would expand rapidly during ascent. German pilots had a low fiber diet to help them deal with that issue.

The Nazis liked to fly above the Allied bombers and then dive down on them, no doubt partially powered by the expelled gas that built inside them on the way up.

It’s amazing what you can learn from history.

The German ME163 Komet

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One Comment

  1. Nice shot of a cool plane … William, I’ve been doing the 32-bit TIFF –> ACR –> Photoshop thing quite a bit lately as well. Having tried both ways, I’ve found I get what I consider better results, more often than not, by letting Photomatix combine the exposures and create the 32-bit file rather than using Photoshop. They just seem to … sparkle .. a bit more. It does create an extra step, in that I find I get best results from using ACR to perform basic edits (white balance and lens corrections, including using the new Upright feature — I don’t usually touch anything else in this preliminary step) and then exporting the exposures to TIFF. I usually export as 16-bit TIFFs even though it might be overkill. Photomatix seems to do better with TIFFs, whereas Photoshop is best at using the “Merge to HDR Pro” straight from the NEF — after having performed the same edits mentioned above. Have you tried it both ways? The nice thing about using Photomatix this way is that you can create the 32-bit TIFF and then go straight into tonemapping from there and save the tonemapped result as an alternate version. Then you can choose one or the other or composite the two in Photoshop. Additional tools and all that …

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