I have been shooting for HDR since February 28th of 2010, about a year and a half.  During that time I have shot 94 total days, I know this because I group my shots into folders based on the day they were shot,  like this:

I put together a tutorial on how to organize your HDR sessions into the days they were shot.  It is very simple but helps tremendously.

Recently my D: drive was down to 28 GB’s, how the hell did it get so low?  I went rummaging through all of these folders and started deleting exposures that just did not work.  I know that when I go out, I will take 3-400 photos, and only 1 maybe 2 will make the chopping block.  So why the hell was I keeping all of these excess exposure sets?  Was one of them just going to magically be a better photo?  Nope, so I went through and deleted all of the +1, +2, -1, and -2 EV shots from all of the pictures that just didn’t work.  My average Raw file is 12 megabytes, that’s 48 extra megabytes per failed HDR photo!  I also deleted any .PSD’s that I hadn’t worked on in over a year, they were on average 189-600 megabytes!  Those Tiff files can average anywhere from 47 mbs to 75 mbs @ 16 bits and 25-35 mbs @ 8 bits.  This HDR thing can get really heavy on the hard drive.  I ended up deleting over 96 GB’s worth of trash information!  I know what I am doing, prolonging the inevitable, but at least I have room for more now.

I did find a lot of great photos that I just never got around to doing anything with.  I’d say between these recent finds and the available space, I made out pretty well!  Check this one out:

This was purely accidental, I thought I was in AEB mode and I hit the trigger on my release and snapped 12 normal pictures instead of 5 bracketted.  I am sure I shouted some sort of expletive and put my camera back into AEB mode and shot the scene again.  When I got home, instead of trashing the 12 I put them in a folder called layer, to tell myself I should probably layer these images, mask the best part of each one and try to make some crazy looking photo with wild looking waves.  I totally forgot about this until 7 months later, yeah when I decided to delete all of the trash from my Photos folder.  I was very surprised to see it cap out at 91.7 on 500px within the first 24 hours.  Here is a little video of the 12 shots I used to make this HDR image.


Blake Rudis
f.64 Academy and f.64 Elite are the brainchildren of Blake Rudis. While he is a landscape photographer, he is most passionate about post-processing images in Photoshop and mentoring others.

For Blake, it's all about the art and process synergy. He dives deep into complex topics and makes them easy to understand through his outside-the-box thinking so that you can use these tricks in your workflow today!
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