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Old May 3, 2007, 9:45 PM   #1
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Hey guys, check out the attached photo. I like the way that everything above the horizon looks, but as you can see, below the horizon is very very dark. If I try to compensate for this, I loose the 'richness' of the colors above the horizon. Any suggestions?
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Old May 3, 2007, 9:50 PM   #2
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How do you try to compensate? it would help to know what you mean.
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Old May 3, 2007, 9:58 PM   #3
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Sorry, what I meant by that is lowering the shutter speed so that the entire image becomes brighter. But, this in turn, while making the lower portion of the photo look better, it washes out the top part.
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Old May 3, 2007, 10:00 PM   #4
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Makes sense.

In this shot the sun is lower than the horizon..... basically behind the hill line. Nowhere near enough light to get detail in the land

Only option is to bracket and merge to HDR in photoshop. Or take the 'classic' approach. take two stots anc cut/paste the brightened scenery into the one of the striking sky.

The sensor simply doesn't have enough DR. Maybe if you shoot raw you can get some detail in the dark spot, but it would probably be super noisy.


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Old May 3, 2007, 10:04 PM   #5
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I'm familiar with HDR, never tried it myself however. Maybe next time I'll bring a tripod and try that.

Is a photo like this at all acceptable? I think the colors in the sky look nice, but the bottom area being so dark seems to ruin it.

I take it that DR must mean dynamic range? Which (if any) dSLRs have good DR?



Thanks for your comments btw!
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Old May 3, 2007, 10:10 PM   #6
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this shot works because the sky is so nice. Also the lil specs of light on the ground look kinda neat.

I would probably have angled the camera up a bit, to show the colors fade to dark blue and have the horizon cover maybe the bottom 1/3 or 1/4 of the screen...







but that's just me! If you like it, it's acceptable!

No DSLR has better dynamic range. The k10d supposedly does a little better but it's so slight it would make absolutely no difference. Remember that there is nothing as good as the human eye.


there's a kind of filter that is half-tinted/half-clear. I think it's called neutral density. Never used one before but theoretically you could take a long exposure to brighten up the ground, but the filter covering the sky would keep it in proper exposure. maybe worth a look.
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Old May 3, 2007, 10:39 PM   #7
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I have another, related question...

When compensating for exposure, you can choose toalter the shutter speed or the aperture (and ISO). Now, I am aware of the relationship between shutter speed and motion, aperture and DOF, and ISO and noise. The photo I posted above was shot at 1/125, f19 and ISO200. Lets say I lower the aperture and raise the shutter speed to allow for the same exact amount of light to come in, does doing this change anything about this shot? Would it affect the colors at all? Or is there really going to be no noticable change?
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Old May 3, 2007, 11:11 PM   #8
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The only way to get detail in the bottom/ground and the sky is to either bracket and do an HDR, bracket and cut-n-paste (I've done this occasionally) or else get a graduated neutral density filter (the correct name for the one that has part of the filter dark and then gradually lightens up to clear). I actually have one that I've never used - my father bought it for his Pentax ME Super camera (bought in the 1980's) - film doesn't have as much dynamic range (ability to "see" both dark and light) as the human eye. Just my opinion, but I don't think the K10 has any more dynamic range than the K100 does - that's the way it seems with my two cameras.

I generally just concentrate on the sky and put the horizon line low down in the frame, leaving the ground black. I've also used something reflective to reflect the sunset (car windows work for this), which tones down the brightness some and allows the camera to capture more of the scene.

Changing the aperture (smaller) and shutter speed (slower) so the exposure stays the same will change your DOF and any motion in your scene, but won't change the light/dark values that the camera captures. Too bad it's not that easy.

P.S. Forgot to include how much I like your picture. This is one of those times HDR might not have been better - I like the dark with the refected colors on the ground.

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Old May 3, 2007, 11:15 PM   #9
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A quickie. I used PSE3,

marked the dark area below the horizon,

copied,

pasted it in a new layer,

used "smart correction",

merged the layers

and voila!

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Old May 3, 2007, 11:27 PM   #10
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that smart correction works rather nice


raw files sometimes have more in them than what you first see
you could try localised curves editing (like everything below the horizon)
or i belive you can output several exposures from the same raw file and use hdr

fill flash could work for something that is close to the camera

personally if i like the sky i make that the subject and kep the dark bits to a minimum


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