keeping sky's blue?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by third_shift|studios, Nov 10, 2008.

  1. third_shift|studios

    third_shift|studios TPF Noob!

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    I want to punch myself every time i take a picture and the sky is bright white and featureless-how does one overcome this and keep dark items [trees/people] in good exposure? EDIT: shot with sony A300 at 200 ISO, no filters, JPEG format

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    Last edited: Nov 10, 2008
  2. hankejp

    hankejp TPF Noob!

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    Are you using a Circular Polarizer? What kind of equipment do you use?
     
  3. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  4. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The old flim trick. Get yourself an ND Grad filter.
     
  5. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    You need to lower the difference between the light levels of the various parts of your scene, or you need to increase the dynamic range you are getting from your gear.

    People and smaller subjects are easy; use a flash or reflected light to brighten them to a level closer to what the background is.

    For buildings and large subjects you probably have to figure out how to get more dynamic range. HDR is definitely an option, but also look into how your camera is set to process, and start learning raw processing.

    These 3 photos show exactly why I found ND grad filters useless when I shot film. With the filter adjusted to darken the parts of the scene that include the bright sky it would also darken parts of the scene I don't want darkened.
     
  6. third_shift|studios

    third_shift|studios TPF Noob!

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    thaks for everyone's replies!
    shot with sony A300 at 200 ISO, no filters, JPEG format
     
  7. tsaraleksi

    tsaraleksi TPF Noob!

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    Shoot the way the sun is shining-- as in, keep the sun to your back. Then it will be easy. Shooting raw can help as well-- it will give you more exposure latitude to pull the sky back into visible range, but more than anything keeping an awareness of the location of the sun will help.

    [​IMG]
    This is unedited, straight out of camera jpeg w/o filters.
     
  8. bullshark

    bullshark TPF Noob!

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    If I cant keep the sky in range using the flash, or sun positioning.. I usually shoot two shots, one at correct exposure for the subject and one exposed for the sky and composite the two later in PS.
     
  9. SilverGlow

    SilverGlow TPF Noob!

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    That would work if you use a tripod. However another way would be to shoot raw, and expose so that you give a good compromise between the too bright sky and the too dark foreground. Then convert the raw two times: Once for the background and another for the foreground, then blend the two once in PhotoShop.

    Now this method I write of is not the first one I'd use. It is far better to choose a better time to get the shot, or choose a different angle, or use a graduated ND filter as required. perhaps a flash can decrease the difference in brightness between the background and foreground to make both expose better (light balancing).

    Back to PhotoShop...another thing you can do is select the sky via the Selection by color, then replace the sky with another. This can be very simple or not so simple depending upon the comp you're working with. Highlight control menu option could save you too...maybe.
     
  10. dklod

    dklod TPF Noob!

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    Using a grad ND filter, what effect would that have on the subject seeing as though a scene like this one, the line between dark and light is all over the place. I can understand that being an option with a landscape shot with a straight horizon, but how does it work here??
     
  11. SilverGlow

    SilverGlow TPF Noob!

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    The grad ND filter may not work for a particular comp.
     
  12. anubis404

    anubis404 TPF Noob!

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    For blue skies, the CPL is the ultimate item. No processing:

    [​IMG]
     

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