Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Dark Against Light

One of the most challenging shooting situations is a dark subject against a light background. Typically the camera will provide you with a reading that will under-expose the dark subject. When that happens, a great deal of noise can appear in the dark areas because they are underexposed.

To avoid this problem, it is beneficial to use Exposure Compensation. This is an easy setting on most cameras. Check your owner's manual to get details on how to use it on your camera. For this image, an Exposure Compensation of +1 was used. That means that one stop more light was used, giving more exposure to the blacks.

In this kind of situation, even if the Histogram shows a good exposure, it still can be beneficial to increase exposure by +1 or more, depending on how light the background is compared to the dark subject. Doing so will assure good detail in the dark tones, and will minimize the appearance of noise.

Shutter Speed 1/640 sec.  Aperture f/8.  ISO 1600.  Lens: Canon 200-400mm f/4L IS with 2X extender for an effective focal length of 761mm.  Camera: Canon 5D Mark III. Camera stabilized on car window.

TODAY'S QUOTE: "Keep a green tree in your heart and perhaps a singing bird will come."  --Chinese proverb

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