Aaaand we're back!

I recently returned from a whirlwind trip around northern California. The central coast, bay area, and northern Napa were all seen. Quite nice to get out of the mountains and see the ocean, although I don't think it went above 60 degrees until we were in Napa, and at that point it was oppressively hot. Got some nice images that aren't real estate for the first time in awhile, and it was refreshing to be able to shoot and not worry about converging verticals! So before I bore you with more drivel, here are a few of my favorite shots from my little vacation.

I've also been playing with new techniques in my architectural and real estate photography. Namely, blending HDR and flash together to bring out more natural colors and add contrast and specular highlights to the images which I feel gives them a much greater depth. I'll usually start with a three-shot bracket of +/-2 EV, and however many flash exposures I feel necessary (in different spots in the image) to bring out some more color and contrast. I then layer them all in photoshop and edit to my hearts content. Here are a few examples of what I end up with, I'd love to hear anyone's thoughts on this technique compared to straight HDR or flash-only exposures. This particular image is six different shots taken with and without flash and composited together:

And this shot is four seperate shots composited together to get the final image.