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Old Jan 24, 2012, 11:38 AM   #11
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Ok Guys.

Thanks for the replies , here is a link to the photos i took on Sunday , i think you can see the exif data too

http://www.flickr.com/photos/darren_...7629014372045/
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Old Jan 29, 2012, 12:05 PM   #12
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I've started to reply a couple of times, but then get distracted and never finished the several thoughts I have about your pictures.

First question - what metering mode are you using? There were a couple of shots that led me to think you were using spot metering instead of center-weighted or matrix. While I prefer to use center-weighted because I'm used to it, either one will give you a better over-all exposure for a scene. Avoid spot metering unless you have a specific reason for using it - once I forgot I had the camera set to spot metering for macros and switched to shooting soccer - the meter point was too often over the player's black shirt and the picture very overexposed!

The second thing that I noticed on many of your shots is that the dynamic range is huge! Digital sensors and film can process only a certain amount of light/dark before it blows out the whites and clips the blacks. I downloaded one of your shots (one of the ones with the row boat full of water) and played around with it. The KR allows you to recover a lot of detail in the shadows - try adding a levels adjustment layer and then move the left (dark) slider at the bottom of the histogram to the right, lightening the darks a bit. Then take the middle slider and move it to the left, which will lighten the mid-tones. You'll recover a lot of detail without blowing out the highlights, which are very close to being blown out in the original. If you are interested, I can post the one that I played with.

Another thing - pay attention to where the sun is. Its such a strong light source and causes havoc with shadows (unless you particularly want a silhouette). By having the sun shining on your subject, you'll avoid having to deal with the shadows and the increased dynamic range.
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Old Jan 29, 2012, 2:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtngal View Post
I've started to reply a couple of times, but then get distracted and never finished the several thoughts I have about your pictures.

First question - what metering mode are you using? There were a couple of shots that led me to think you were using spot metering instead of center-weighted or matrix. While I prefer to use center-weighted because I'm used to it, either one will give you a better over-all exposure for a scene. Avoid spot metering unless you have a specific reason for using it - once I forgot I had the camera set to spot metering for macros and switched to shooting soccer - the meter point was too often over the player's black shirt and the picture very overexposed!

The second thing that I noticed on many of your shots is that the dynamic range is huge! Digital sensors and film can process only a certain amount of light/dark before it blows out the whites and clips the blacks. I downloaded one of your shots (one of the ones with the row boat full of water) and played around with it. The KR allows you to recover a lot of detail in the shadows - try adding a levels adjustment layer and then move the left (dark) slider at the bottom of the histogram to the right, lightening the darks a bit. Then take the middle slider and move it to the left, which will lighten the mid-tones. You'll recover a lot of detail without blowing out the highlights, which are very close to being blown out in the original. If you are interested, I can post the one that I played with.

Another thing - pay attention to where the sun is. Its such a strong light source and causes havoc with shadows (unless you particularly want a silhouette). By having the sun shining on your subject, you'll avoid having to deal with the shadows and the increased dynamic range.
Could you explain about the dynamic range please ? Had a quick try as described



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Last edited by Forzahibs; Jan 29, 2012 at 3:24 PM.
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Old Jan 29, 2012, 6:19 PM   #14
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I have Photoshop Cs5 but if i tried to use it i doubt i'd know how to improve anything . I just wish i knew why when the camera indicates correct exposure my photos appear dark even when it was a nice sunny day like Sunday was
If you want to learn how to use CS5 from your home, go to LVS - http://lvsonline.com/ They offer six week courses for $30 and you get a tremendous amount of instruction. Sara Froehlich is usually the teacher for PS classes and she is great. I've taken many courses from her over the years.

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Old Jan 29, 2012, 11:03 PM   #15
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I think of dynamic range as being everything between the darkest spot and the lightest spot in a scene (i.e., the difference between the lightest and darkest points). If a scene is something that has little tone difference between the lightest and darkest points, it has a small range (think of a solid colored leaf in the shade). Bright sunlight adds a huge amount of light to a scene - think about moving half that leaf into sunlight, leaving the other half in shade. Now your scene has a large amount of dynamic range. While a person can perceive both the light and the dark parts of the leaf (the eye is amazing how it can adjust), a camera's sensor might not be able to adjust that much. So you either end up with clipped black shadows or blown-out highlights (no information in them). That's the purpose of HDR software when combined with exposure bracketing.

Your adjustment is better, but you can go much further on that picture - your picture is basically underexposed. Camera meters try to make most of the metered area grey (I think it's 18%). In this case, it did that very well - the sky is grey and so underexposed it wall. If you add an adjustment levels layer, you will see that the extreme right side is flat - there aren't any brights. So move the right arrow over to where there's some black lines. I then moved the middle arrow over to the left quite a bit in order to lighten the mid-tones (and used the healing tool on your dust spot). I still wasn't quite happy with the darks, so I added a curves layer to lighten just the darks some, leaving the lights alone. Some people might be able to do the whole thing with curves, but I'm not good with it and usually get too frustrated. In any case, you get the idea (and if you want me to delete the picture, I'd be happy to). It took me longer to type this post than it did to adjust your photo, by the way.
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Old Jan 30, 2012, 12:07 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtngal View Post
I think of dynamic range as being everything between the darkest spot and the lightest spot in a scene (i.e., the difference between the lightest and darkest points). If a scene is something that has little tone difference between the lightest and darkest points, it has a small range (think of a solid colored leaf in the shade). Bright sunlight adds a huge amount of light to a scene - think about moving half that leaf into sunlight, leaving the other half in shade. Now your scene has a large amount of dynamic range. While a person can perceive both the light and the dark parts of the leaf (the eye is amazing how it can adjust), a camera's sensor might not be able to adjust that much. So you either end up with clipped black shadows or blown-out highlights (no information in them). That's the purpose of HDR software when combined with exposure bracketing.

Your adjustment is better, but you can go much further on that picture - your picture is basically underexposed. Camera meters try to make most of the metered area grey (I think it's 18%). In this case, it did that very well - the sky is grey and so underexposed it wall. If you add an adjustment levels layer, you will see that the extreme right side is flat - there aren't any brights. So move the right arrow over to where there's some black lines. I then moved the middle arrow over to the left quite a bit in order to lighten the mid-tones (and used the healing tool on your dust spot). I still wasn't quite happy with the darks, so I added a curves layer to lighten just the darks some, leaving the lights alone. Some people might be able to do the whole thing with curves, but I'm not good with it and usually get too frustrated. In any case, you get the idea (and if you want me to delete the picture, I'd be happy to). It took me longer to type this post than it did to adjust your photo, by the way.
Yes it's a huge difference for sure . Thanks for the help folks i really should look into learning more about photoshop
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