Late last year I bought myself a Canon 6D to use as my travel camera. Overall I am very pleased with the size, weight and IQ of this body, but I have always struggled to get the exposure correct in the camera. So much so I have been using a small canon flash (270EX) as a fill flash, but I feel this produces very washed out and flat lighting shots.
The other night whilst pondering this dilemma it suddenly dawned on me I have been spoilt by using the 1D series bodies over the last couple of years.
Although I do some studio shots under controlled lighting (and therefore set my exposure manually), the majority of my shots are environmental settings. This presents itself with challenges. One moment I could be at the front of a cathedral, and the next inside photographing the ceiling. Ten minutes later I may be photographing my wife against the back drop of a dimly / brightly lit canal.
My camera is normally set to AV mode, back button focussing, with a small flash on top which I switch on and off as needed. I normally move the focus point to rest on the eyes of the person I am photographing. The problem with all digital canons (except the 1D series) is they only meter off the centre focus point. In most cases when I am photographing people I rarely use the centre focus point.
The dilemma I am facing now is the outer focus point is on the face, and this is where I need to meter, but the centre focus point is not on subject, and instead is taking a meter reading of some brighter / darker background. To compensate the other day I did the old centre point focus and move method but because I enjoy shooting wide open, I ended up with a large number of OOF shots – not the ideal answer. I have also tried locking exposure with the centre point focus and then moving the focus point but this is just awkward and time consuming. In the end I just set my camera to manual and chimped away until I got what I wanted.
How have other people got over this hurdle with canon bodies?
By the way the Canon 1D series meter from the active focus point – hence no need to worry too much.