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Old Sep 3, 2004, 7:28 AM   #11
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Ok, thanx monkey143 :-)
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Old Sep 4, 2004, 12:19 AM   #12
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I'm trying to get my head wrapped around this challenge. I've been looking at the pictures, reading the posts, following the links, and searching for info myself. I think I am getting a bit of a grip on high / low key. At first I was thinking in terms of under/over exposure. Underexpose a scene and you get low key; overexpose a scene and you get high key. Now I'm thinking that it's more about composition and correctly exposing a scene with significant contrasts. Am I heading in the right direction?




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Old Sep 4, 2004, 12:35 PM   #13
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Harryed, it is a difficult subject, if you haven't noticed by all the confusion and ambiguity in this challenge! It is my understanding that low key applies to a photo with primarily dark and high key primarily light. If your camera has a histogram on it, you can check it out. You can change your tones (levels)in the camera, in the software, or through external lighting sources. Cal was right in that it makes use fo trying to circumvent your camera's propensity to "read" the 18% gray as a best-case setting. In Photoshop Elements, you could use the "histogram" pull-down choice to check it out - if you have a good balance of "hills" and "valleys" across the whole graph, you've got a well-toned picture. Pull down your "levels" menu to manipulate your histogram by playing with the sliders. Could be I'm all washed up, but this is my limited (very limited) understanding.

Cal chose this as a learning lesson for himself and I think we're all learning something - maybe not what was intended, and perhaps we're not honing our skills but this is certainly one of the more challenging challenges! :-)
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Old Sep 4, 2004, 2:36 PM   #14
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Monkey,

Thanks for the reply. There does seem to be two approaches to this challenge both of which produce interesting results.

harry
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Old Sep 4, 2004, 4:26 PM   #15
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Monkey143... I just realized that your avatar is highkey!

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Old Sep 4, 2004, 7:18 PM   #16
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..and yours is low!:-)



(so am I all washed up? Or washed out?:-))
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Old Sep 8, 2004, 7:12 AM   #17
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I heard from our fearless previous leader Barbara, who did a good bit of research to help us all out. I will just cut and paste her PM to Vito and I here:

"High-key and low-key pictures are far easier to spot in black-and-white because the highs and lows are actuallyreferring to thelevel of luminance or depth of gray.

Strictly speaking, ahigh-key picture consists of only lighter gray tones while a low-key picture is the opposite where all the tones are at the dark end of the scale. In a histogram, everythingwill be bunched at one end or the other.

High-key: white cat on snow

Low-key: black cat in coal bin

A number of the people seem to be confusing exposure with key, and they shouldn't. An over-exposed picture isn't high key; it's just plain over-exposed. Same is true for under-exposure and low key. It's the subject, not the exposure, that creates the key.

With colors, it's probably simplest to think of a picture with nothing but light pastels in it as being high-key and one with nothing but very deep shades as being low-key.

So, looking at the definitions, it becomes obvious that a number of the members misunderstood. It has everything to do with subject and very little to do with exposure other than forthe problems encountered by such extreme subjects."


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Old Sep 12, 2004, 9:28 PM   #18
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Oh man, this one would be a good one for my buddy who loves to shoot black and white with extreme shadow/light in them to join the forum with..... I've never tried anything like this either, I may have to give it a go if I can make the time this week, but my schedule has been pretty crazy the last couple weeks...
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Old Sep 12, 2004, 10:14 PM   #19
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you don't have to post them within the challenge dates if you can't...

i think betsy will agree..

i mean, you shouldn't purposefully miss the dates, but if you can't make the time, just post it when you can...i'll still read it...

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Old Sep 13, 2004, 6:59 AM   #20
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Vito's right. You can always ponder the challenge and post in the other forums! :-)
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