I have shot it, you have viewed it and I now want to share it a bit. I want you all to know that HDRs run from magical colors to about the same image you see below.
Now this was an HDR created from 5 images. I often shoot from 5 - 9 images to create a single HDR. As you can see here, the images range from light to dark, all details are covered in at least one of the images. Overlaying the images on top of each other allows me to capture all ranges of light in a single image. HDR stands for high dynamic range, a process of capturing a wide bracket of images and merging them into a single image. A single image that is very flexible when it comes to exposure. The extremity of colors and looks comes from a process called tone mapping. Tone mapping is the little man with a cape and a pointed hat that waves colors from his wand. He is the one who is in full control of creating such controversial images amongst photographers. Some want to create unreal images and some want to create what our eyes actually saw.
In the end, people love it and people hate it. HDRs to me were a sort of addiction. I loved to picture them and plan them out. They helped me see more possible detail in my head before shooting then ever before. They are just so fun because you just never know what you are going to get. I will bid them a slow farewell from this point forward.
I have not used photoshop for about 4 years and never have for an HDR. I use / used an Aperture plugin called Photomatix for each and every HDR.