Mon 10-Dec-12 03:16 AM | edited Mon 10-Dec-12 03:17 AM by ShrimpBoy
>wouldnt the bracketing function only bracket for the exposure >i expose for first the over and under expose that???
>im thinking to expose for the sky then using the same focus >points expose for the tree or somethign similar without having >to refocus or touch anything else (not sure how to do this >though) then combine it together
Assuming the light isn't continually changing, you could hand-hold the camera to manually spot meter each of these areas. Note the exposures. Then put the camera on the tripod to frame the shot you actually want, focus, and shoot it in manual mode at the various exposures. But if you're looking to use HDR, the usual thing is to shoot a sequence of frames at a fixed exposure increment, say three or five frames at a two-stop interval. For a realistic look where you just want to brighten up the shadows a bit and tame blown-out highlights, three frames should do.
Personally I've become a fan of metering off the sky if it's a nice blue. Depending upon how light the sky is, I might go anywhere between plus two thirds of a stop (lighter blue) and minus two thirds (deeper blue). As Stan said, if you shoot RAW you can bring up the shadows in post-processing and get your shot with a single exposure.