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Thread: Exposure, Expose to the Right, Grad filters, HDR etc - discussion

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    It's all about the Light!
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    Exposure, Expose to the Right, Grad filters, HDR etc - discussion

    We hear the advice 'expose to the right' or 'expose for the highlights' which to some extent contradict each other.

    This is always an interesting discussion and I'm sure members have lots of opinions.

    This article explains expose to the right.

    The article says don't let the histogram bump up against the RHS which will lead to blown highlights.

    So to me setting +/-Ev (or whatever you do in manual) is about getting the right exposure for the conditions.
    Blown highlights are the worst problem ONLY IF they have detail you actually wanted.
    Eg: a shot of a car with lots of chrome will have some blown bits - no drama; but
    a photo of a 'blond beach babe' where the models hair is blown is not so good.

    In the end "Expose to the right if you can" makes more sense to me.

    The solution for getting a good exposure may well be HDR (multi exposure) and/or grad filters,
    but these options are not always available.

    You may get less noise when you slightly over expose, but a slight under exposure (to the left) means you save those highlights.
    Which is right? To me it depends on the subject and what you trying to capture.

    So please share your thoughts about exposing for landscapes and sunsets, sports, wildlife etc.
    regards, Kym Gallery Honest & Direct Constructive Critique Appreciated! ©
    Digital & film, Bits of glass covering 10mm to 500mm, and other stuff



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    ECFTAYDNTFAIP

    Expose Correctly First Time And You Dont Need To Fart Around In Post
    Darren
    Gear : Nikon Goodness
    Website : http://www.peakactionimages.com
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    Constructive Critique of my images always appreciated

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Always expose so that highlights are not blown. Any highlights blown out to pure white cannot be recovered in editing software. Luckily though, shadows can, even with a simple use of the shadows/highlights sliders. So expose your photos so that the whitest, brightest parts are not pure white (learn to use your camera's histogram), and then you can work on the shadow detail in post processing.

    Good understanding of histograms here: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tu...stograms.shtml
    Last edited by ricktas; 11-05-2010 at 11:41am.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    ECFTAYDNTFAIP
    Expose Correctly First Time And You Dont Need To Fart Around In Post
    Agreed, but the discussion is about HOW to get the 'Right' exposure.

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    I think the best tool in my Nikon Arsenal is a) blinkies on playback on the LCD, and b) EV comp

    Chimp and adjust to only have the "blinkies" where you need them while maintaining good range on the histogram

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    I think expose however u like just as long as u know what u're doing and your results reflects ur intentions.
    Guides such as ETTR are there to help u optimise the captured data but it has no knowledge of what the scene is or how u intend it to look. It would be quite pointless to ETTR for example if u're photographing the moody atmosphere of a dimly lit jazz club. U may end up having to comprise one or more of ur exposure variables to ETTR only to have to darken everything down pp anyways.
    Similarly if there are very bright spots of light eg. Sun, bulbs, specular reflection off metalic objects in the frame, u may have to compromise heavily in other exposure variables just to save a few highlights - quite pointless IMO.
    I think as long as u understand u've lost irretrievable data in blown highlights, u can decide whether that matters in your picture.
    As for HDR, I have to say I'm not a fan (yet) but the jury is still out. I still cringe at almost every obvious HDR shots I see. I'm undecided about the less obvious ones and I'm sure there're a few very well tone-mapped ones which I thought wasn't hdr which I've liked.
    I like GND filter results far more but their application are generally quite limited.
    In short optimse ur exposure for what u want to do with the image and don't be limited by rules and what ppl deem 'correct'.
    Nikon FX

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    Member Adrian Fischer's Avatar
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    blinkies for me also.
    ______________________________________________

    Adrian Fischer
    Brisbane, Australia

    Gear: Nikon D80, D300, Nikon 35mm f1.8, 50mm f1.8, 85mm f1.8, 105mm f2.5, 18-200 VR, 70-200 VR, Sigma 28-70mm f2.8, Sigma 50-500, Tonkina 12-24 f4, SB-600, various YongNuo Strobes, various umbrellas, 6 x 300w studio flashes, various softboxes, reflectors, stands, transmitters and receivers.

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    Ausphotography Regular gcflora's Avatar
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    You can clip the shadows as well as highlights, meaning they're not recoverable either. I never see that mentioned though so maybe I am just weird
    Craig

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    When some one talk about histogram they do not say what setting we should me using in Camera.

    histogram represent jpg even if we are shooting in RAW and will be effected by the setting of camera.

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    All lines lead to Home ... arnica's Avatar
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    How do we enable to blinkies? My LCD never shows any blinking bright sections on my photos ...
    Regards,
    Phil

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    Quote Originally Posted by glenwood View Post
    When some one talk about histogram they do not say what setting we should me using in Camera.
    histogram represent jpg even if we are shooting in RAW and will be effected by the setting of camera.
    It won't matter the the histogram is on a SCALE of 0-255. Even if your sensor is 14bits.
    2^0 -1 (0) -> 0 and 2^14 - 1 (16,383) -> 255

    The resolution of the camera LCD is even less.
    So as a simple graphic representing light on the sensor it works regardless of raw/JPEG settings.

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    Exposure, Expose to the Right, Grad filters, HDR etc - discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by gcflora
    You can clip the shadows as well as highlights, meaning they're not recoverable either. I never see that mentioned though so maybe I am just weird
    I don't thing you weird at all, too black is not good either


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Member James T's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kym View Post
    It won't matter the the histogram is on a SCALE of 0-255. Even if your sensor is 14bits.
    2^0 -1 (0) -> 0 and 2^14 - 1 (16,383) -> 255

    The resolution of the camera LCD is even less.
    So as a simple graphic representing light on the sensor it works regardless of raw/JPEG settings.
    It works off the processed JPEG though doesn't it? ie it doesn't work by measuring the light that hits the sensor. Meaning it takes into accounts contrast settings, etc (which affect the levels obviously).

    Not something I've ever really looked into though, as it's of very little consequence in the real world.

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    Exposure, Expose to the Right, Grad filters, HDR etc - discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by arnica
    How do we enable to blinkies? My LCD never shows any blinking bright sections on my photos ...
    Depends on your camera I suspect, I'm nikon land, at least on the models I'm familiar with it's a playback option you can set


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    ECFTAYDNTFAIP

    Expose Correctly First Time And You Dont Need To Fart Around In Post
    How long in the computer industry and you still can't get it to a TLA?

    Agree with the sentiment though. (And blinkies are your friend!)

    (ECHO.... Expose correctly - Histograms OK.)
    Regards, Rob

    D600, AF-S 35mm f1.8G DX, AF-S 50mm f1.8G, AF-S 24-85mm f3.5-4.5G ED VR, AF-S 70-300mm F4.5-5.6G VR, Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM
    Photos: geeoverbar.smugmug.com Software: CS6, Lightroom 4

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James T View Post
    It works off the processed JPEG though doesn't it? ie it doesn't work by measuring the light that hits the sensor. Meaning it takes into accounts contrast settings, etc (which affect the levels obviously).

    Not something I've ever really looked into though, as it's of very little consequence in the real world.
    yep...correct. To get a more accurate representation of ur RAW file, try uniwb.

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    Blinkies and histogram on your instant review screen are a must IMO.
    Mic

    Photography is the art of telling stories with light.

    www.michaelgoulding.com

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    Member James T's Avatar
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    FWIW, I usual start the old fashioned way, ie I use my eyes.

    Then maybe have a quick check on the back of the camera for the first shot in each location. Too lazy to be worrying about metering all the time.

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    Technique.... I found this on Flickr in Pentax discussion

    By the way, how do you expose to the right?
    I donĀ“t like the trial/error system, because sometimes there is no time to do it.

    After lots of samples, I've adopted the next procedure with my K20D:

    1) Set the metering mode in SPOT.
    2) Set the exposure mode in M
    3) Set exposure compensation to +3 Ev (in steps of 1/2 EV, 1/3 can't reach +3EV).
    4) Point the centre of the viewfinder to the brightest light zone in the scene that I want detailed.
    5) Press the GREEN BUTTON, to save the exposure of the brightest light +3EV.
    6) Then rea-im what I want , and then shoot.

    As you can see, the hysto is completely to the right, without clip lights.

    If you save this setting in the USER option, you only have to set it in SPOT, USER, point the brightest light, re-aim, and shoot.
    Better than trial/error 2 or 3 times...

    Has anybody tried this before?

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    All lines lead to Home ... arnica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    Depends on your camera I suspect, I'm nikon land, at least on the models I'm familiar with it's a playback option you can set


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Or maybe it's just that all my photos are "perfectly exposed" ...LOL!!!


    Ok, I'll have a play with the menus tonight ..

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