Meter reading in a studio

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by One_Look, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. One_Look

    One_Look TPF Noob!

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    I just started my job today at a photography studio as an assistant, and have a question...


    When you take a meter reading (I'm pretty much working as an assistant during "Senior Picture" taking season) and I have the ISO set for 100 since its inside and also set at 125....they check, and "dump the lights" until they get a reading of either 5.6/9 or 8/0...is the meter reading telling them what aperture to set the camera at in order to take the picture?

    Ok wait, maybe this makes more sense for others....when I say "5.6/9" and they go ahead and take the picture, are they setting the lens at 5.6?

    The first day was looooooooong and I learned a lot, and they are going to be training me to be a photographer in December and I feel like its the stupidest question ever! Thanks Guys!!!!
     
  2. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Yes, the meter is telling them what aperture to use, or to put it another way, it tells them when the lights are set to the output that gives them the aperture they want to use. "5.6/9" would usually mean f/5.6 and nine tenths - ie very close to f/8 and no tenths ("8/0") - so the aperture would probably be set to f/8. Many pro lightmeters with a digital readout give the aperture in whole stops and tenth-stops. There may be other options for the display, depending on the meter.

    When you turn the output of a manually-controlled flash (such as a studio strobe) down you often have to dump the existing charge (depending on the particular type of power pack), otherwise you get more than you wanted the next time you fire the flash. For example, if the flash had been set at 3/4 power, and you wanted 1/2 you would turn the output down to 1/2 then fire the flash without taking a reading. The first pop dumps the 3/4 charge that was there before turning the output down, so the next time the flash charges up it will be charged to half power. This is one of those things that you need to remember when working with studio flash.

    Good luck,
    Helen
     
  3. One_Look

    One_Look TPF Noob!

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    Thank you so much! That's exactly what I thought all day, and I just wanted to make sure! Again, THANKS!
     

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