Challenges with extreme highlights and shadows

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by lvcrtrs, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. lvcrtrs

    lvcrtrs TPF Noob!

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    I was at a great place called St. Peters Village, PA. The French Creek runs through all these boulders and rocks where people climb around on them (saw 3 people fall) and play in the water where it opens up a bit.

    I just didn't know what to do with the range of bright light to deep shadows. And, when you're outside, sometimes you really can't see in the LCD how good/bad things really are in the pic.

    How would you best set up to take pictures here just by looking at the situation you are about to shoot (without even looking at the output until you were home)? Which meter mode would think is best?

    1. SPV464
    F4.5, 1/80, 200, 18mm, Pattern, Normal Program
    [​IMG]


    2. SPV 473
    F5, 1/400, 200, 58mm, Pattern, Normal Program
    [​IMG]


    3. SPV 477
    F4, 1/40, 200, 25mm, Pattern, Normal Program
    [​IMG]
     
  2. farmerj

    farmerj TPF Noob!

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    For shots like that,

    I have my AE-L/AF-L set to AE-L Hold. I will expose on the bright rocks and press the AE-L button.

    I will then re-compose and take the picture that I want.


    I had some shots I did like that in our local park off the concrete sidewalk. They were good learning shots, but I did not save them after reviewing in the camera.

    Good enough that's what I have my AE-l/AF-L button programmed for constantly now.
     
  3. Lyncca

    Lyncca TPF Noob!

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    HDR :sexywink:
     
  4. B Kennedy

    B Kennedy TPF Noob!

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    It's always tough to shoot landscapes like these under such dramatic highlights and shadows. One Possibility is to expose for one, shoot raw and try to recover in ps. But ultimately you want to try and avoid shooting when the lighting is so bright like this when shooting along the streams. The first photo is exposed pretty well and there arent as harsh highlights. The second 2 you almost will always either have a real bright background or a real dark foreground, or as you photographed, a combination of both. Also never go by the lcd especially when in such bright light, always check the histogram (it never lies) and im sure it'll look like a wide 'U' in these circumstances.

    I too have photographed under similiar lighting along streams under the tree canopy and the only answer that has worked for me was, show up early in the morning and late in teh afternoon and then start takin pics.
     
  5. B Kennedy

    B Kennedy TPF Noob!

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    HDR definitely would do it, although its one technique I haven't attempted yet, thats why I try and wait for the golden lighting - of course which I rarely ever get because i dont have all that time to wait:D
     
  6. farmerj

    farmerj TPF Noob!

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    For the AE-L camera settings, they are on pg 179 and 200 in the manual.

    Menu Option c1 and f4
     
  7. lvcrtrs

    lvcrtrs TPF Noob!

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    Thanks all,

    Ahhhhhhhh, histograms, seen 'em, read about 'em, but haven't made anything stick yet on what to do with it. Need a histogram for dummies lecture. Like when it's banging against the left side do this or the right do that.

    Now I'll have to go back to St. Peters with a picnic (and bug spray-ginormous mosquitos) and try shooting the rocks again.
     
  8. farmerj

    farmerj TPF Noob!

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    before you go out trekking off on something like that.

    if you have a concrete sidewalk around. Try to shoot over or off of that. The glare from the sun can be rather overwhelming.
     
  9. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    Just pondering idly; more looking for what others think of this idea than meaning for this to be taken as advice.

    For #3, perhaps that could be tackled with a sufficiently powerful flash? You'd have to diffuse it, I think, and put it somewhere left of the camera (edit: and another on camera or just right as fill), but that might have allowed for better control over the foreground's exposure, no?

    Though personally, I'd just come back later in the day, say an hour before sunset, and shoot then.
     
  10. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    if it was me... i probably would have just taken the shot at a different time of day. but that's ideally what HDR is used for.
     
  11. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    HDR? Dear god no. No more dodgy unrealistic horridly oversaturated and weirdly lit photos. Ok rant over :p

    Rather than shooting at a different time of day you could also shoot on a different day altogether. Some of the most fantastic forest and foliage covered river shots I have seen were photographed on completely overcast days. This reduces the direct lighting by a good 1-2 stops to help with the exposures.
     
  12. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    "Dodgy unrealistic horridly oversaturated and weirdly lit photos" = tone-mapping.

    HDR just means high-dynamic range but...not that we can actually use it effectively with current display technology. *sigh*
     

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