While in the Twin Cities this weekend, my wife and I stopped into the Cathedral of St. Paul. It is a magnificent building, both inside and out. While the church does not mind photography, they do not allow tripods without a permit. I decided against the tripod and went in handheld.
With the range of brightness in the room, I opted to shoot for HDR. But being I was going handheld, I knew I could only pull 3 shots with faster shutter speeds, hoping to minimize my movement between exposures. After using the spot meter on my camera, for the shadows and highlights, I found a 1.5 stop difference between the exposures would be sufficient to get the exposures needed in 3 shots. I knew I would have to use these 3 to process for more exposures to get the results I wanted. If I did use the tripod, I would have gone for a minimum of 5 exposures, but probably upwards of 9 to cover my bases.
I ended up with 5 processed images, and moved them to HDR Efex for HDR processing. Below is the result: