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Old Dec 7, 2005, 2:37 AM   #1
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I'm trying to learn about digital photography, and one area that I want to know about is how to read, or understand, a histogram. I've seen them shown on the camera reviews, What is it they are showing? What is an ideal histogram supposed to look like?
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Old Dec 7, 2005, 4:34 AM   #2
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Try this article - http://www.lexar.com/dp/tips_lessons...histogram.html- it really helped explain things to me. - Dano
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Old Dec 7, 2005, 5:22 AM   #3
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Good article. Here are a couple more...



Both good reading.

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Old Dec 7, 2005, 11:20 AM   #4
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I'm with Declan, the luminous-landscape articles are very good.

Basically, there is no "ideal" histogram. What they do is show you in a graphical manor how much data is of what brightness. In other words, if there is a lot of dark area in the image, then the histogram will be very high on the left. If the image is very bright, then the histogram will high on the right. Just because there is more data to one side or the other doesn't make it "inherently" bad/wrong.

But if you want a more normally exposed outdoor day shot, and its got lots of data to the left then you underexposed it. That is how you should use it.

Generally you want more data to the right than left (if you follow the "expose to the right" method of working), so you want more "light" data. Then you can correct it in photoshop to have a more properly exposed image. But you don't want to over expose, so it is not the easiest way to shoot. It can produce great results, but if you do it wrong you'll loose all detail in the hilights.

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Old Dec 9, 2005, 1:57 AM   #5
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Thanks, everyone, for the excellent links. I read them and found them very helpful. I'm from the old school of manual SLR photography, and find the Digital SLR's both amazing, and overwhelming. I haven't gotten one yet, just researching while I'm saving, but I have 3 point & shoot cameras, and I have my hands full trying to learn about them. I realize the image is the most important thing, but I want to be able to learn, and utilize as much of the camera's capabilities as possible.
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