Saturday, October 7, 2017

"Understanding Your Camera's Light Meter" by Keith French

Once considered a fundamental skill in photography, reading and interpreting your camera’s light meter has nearly become a lost tool in the world of digital photography.
Today’s digital camera’s, whether in the form of a phone or an actual stand alone camera have some pretty sophisticated light reading abilities. Especially when compared to what professional photographers had at their disposal just a short 15 years ago.  With the increase in light sensitive materials and other physical components used to transfer the information of reading light to a digital or electronic signal, came the much more sophisticated algorithms for interpreting that information and creating a solution in the form of great dynamic exposure (a perfect balance between the light and dark portions of the image based on all the settings chosen by the photographer)

My experience as a camera store owner while teaching budding photographers how to improve their skills was that the light meter was the last thing many of these “students” of photography wanted to learn about. I cannot be sure exactly but I think because when they shot on AUTO, they only needed to worry about catching the moment, and composing it in the view finder and the camera took over making many decisions for them.  And rightly so, the decision process going into making a great image is layered in a thought process of “Yes – No – Do This”  check lists that eventually become nearly automated in our own brain as we grow in our skill.  While developing this skill many photographers heavily rely on the automated shooting modes like AUTO or PROGRAM of their camera.  Some never grow past this, others eventually realize as they advance in their learning and gain a more developed eye for details that they need to have more input into the thought process of creating that image.

That is the artist I’m reaching out to.  This learning process has somehow been reversed. The light meter, and it’s very close relative the histogram, are the only components of the camera that are actively communicating back to you. The operator of a very complicated and highly capable devise, otherwise known as a camera. To further appreciate that description pick up a Kodak Brownie at a garage sale and disassemble it. You’ll see it’s not much more than a small “shoe box” of a device still capable of creating world class art in the hands of an individual who has learned to read and capture light. That device didn’t have a light meter. So the individual had to spend hours, if not years mastering light. Today you have an open book test in front of you every time you set up an image. The answers are all right in front of you, all you have to do is interpret the data and make a few decisions. Mastering the light meter will save you hours in post processing, teach you how to better read light, and give you the control you’ll enjoy having when setting up and creating that perfect image in a highly dynamic lighting situation.

So where is the light meter in your camera?  Chances are you have looked at it numerous times and looked right past it. It’s usually in the bottom of your viewfinder or screen in live view and it looks similar to this:

I have added the red arrows and the text so you know what it is telling you, but there it is.

You also need to under stand the 4 modes you have available as far as light meter settings go. In other words, where is the meter measuring the light? 

Here are 4 examples of relative measuring:


The area in blue is where the camera is “looking” when it reads the light and provides you feedback via the light meter.




Having the right setting and following it’s advise takes you from this:


             















 to this:
 Now I’ve been on social media, and I’ve seen plenty of images where the general public lauds praise on the former image, but you don’t need to have too discerning of an eye to see the difference.  It’s was an easy setting change from one metering mode, in this case Evaluative, to Partial.  Of course knowing to make this setting change ahead of time saved a lot of post processing corrections.

So much money has been invested in research and development by the manufactures of your devises you use to make images that you may want to consider understanding why, especially if you are looking to take your skill and presentations to the next level. Eventually a few quick decisions, and setting adjustments as you approach a scene or activity and you are on your way. It doesn’t have to be hard and the manufactures went out of their way to make it as simple as they can so you use it.  Unfortunately the process in which many have learned photography bypassed this tool altogether. 

At CAPS we are going to unpack the light meter modes, explain it, show samples, and explore the light meter in your devise. Getting the proper exposure to this old film shooter means getting it right in the camera, so I can spend more time shooting and less time post processing.  

Keith French has been a full time professional photographer since 2001 with an extensive background in several types of photography dating back to 1984.  His years as an owner of a full service retail camera store, Photo/Video studio, and commercial color and B & W photo lab, gave him a unique look into the full circle of the photographic industry. Buying and selling equipment and accessories, hosting and teaching photography classes and workshops, shooting and printing, combined with his time as a United States Marine Corps Aviator and the travels that were associated there. Keith has a well-rounded repertoire of photographic experience on 4 continents and 3 oceans.

Keith currently runs workshops with Tony Reynes and Out of Chicago


Workshops:  http://kfrenchphoto.com/photo-workshop/  Hands On Photographic Workshop

Keith French will be teaching "Get the Right Exposure, Understanding Your Camera's Meter" at CAPS-Chicago Area Photographic School on Saturday, November 18th.

To see the entire schedule of classes go to: caps.caccaweb.com or click here:  Home

To register go to:   Chicago Area Photographic School (CAPS) 2017 | Summary | powered by RegOnline



6 comments:

  1. تعمل شركة اللمسه في مكافحة الحشرات مثل النمل والصراصير وجميع انواع الحشرات بأبها الان ، وتعتبر شركة اللمسه من اشهر شركات مكافحة الحشرات في السعودية , لدينا عمالة مدربة ومتخصصة المواد المستخدمة فى مكافحة الحشرات غير ضارة على الانسان وليس لها روائح نعمل بدون مغادرة المنزل نعمل على راحة عملائنا .
    شركة رش مبيدات بالخرج
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالخرج
    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بالخرج
    شركة رش مبيدات بأبها
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بأبها
    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بأبها
    شركة رش مبيدات بنجران
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بنجران
    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بنجران

    ReplyDelete
  2. نحن شركة كبرى فى مكافحة الحشرات ولدينا خبرة كبيرة فى مكافحة الحشرات, تحت يد فريق متخصص من العمالة المدربة وافضل الاجهزة , نستخدم افضل ادوات مكافحة الحشرات التى لا تؤثر على الانسان وبدون مغادرة المنزل, نطمح بأن نلبى احتياجات جميع عملائنا فلا تتردد في الاتصال بنا وأن تكون احد عملائنا المميزين.
    شركة رش مبيدات بالدوادمي
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدوادمي
    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بالدوادمي
    شركة رش مبيدات بخميس مشيط
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بخميس مشيط
    شركة رش مبيدات بالقصيم
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالقصيم
    شركة رش مببيدات بالافلاج
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالافلاج
    شركة رش مبيدات بالرياض

    ReplyDelete
  3. اللمسه لمكافحة جميع انواع الحشرات نعمل دائما على راحة عملائنا نحن من افضل الشركات فى بالخبر وذلك بشهادة عملائنا , نعمل على مكافحة جميع انواع الحشرات في الشركات والنوادى والمصانع والمنازل والمجالس نقضى عليها تماما بدون مغادرة المنزل او الشركة وبدون روائح كريهة ومتعبة للأسرة , لا تتردد ابدا بأن تكون واحدا من عملائنا المتميزون
    شركة رش مبيدات بحوطة بنى تميم
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بحوطة بنى تميم
    شركة رش مبيدات برماح
    شركة مكافحة حشرات برماح
    شركة رش مبيدات بالمزاحميه
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمزاحميه
    شركة رش مبيدات بجازان
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بجازان
    شركة رش مبيدات ببيشه
    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بالرياض

    ReplyDelete
  4. هل تعاني من الحشرات الموجودة في منزلك او شركتك او مصنعك ، لا تقلق ابدا بعد اليوم فهذه المشكلة حلها يسير مع شركة دهب أفضل شركات مكافحة الحشرات في السعودية الان تقدم خدماتها يمكنك الاتصال بنا وطلب خدمة مكافحة الحشرات الان وتخلص من اضرار هذه الحشرات تماما .
    شركة مكافحة حشرات ببيشه
    شركة رش مبيدات بالجوف
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالجوف
    شركة رش مبيدات بالعينه
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالعينه
    شركة رش مبيدات بالدمام
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالدمام
    شركة مكافحة نمل ابيض بالدمام
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالرياض

    ReplyDelete
  5. تتميز شركتنا شركة الصياد للخدمات المنزليه علي مستوي المملكه وايضا تعطي شركتنا الضمان الكامل للعميل حتي يطمئن وايضا تكون جميع عملياة النظافه والعمليات التي يطلبه مننا العميل تكون تحت اشرافه تماما وايضا تتمتع شركتنا بافضلالمعدات والخامات التي نستعمله في مجالات التنظيف وايضا نملك احدث السيارات لنقل العفش الي اي مكان يحدده العميل لنا ونملك افضل المكينات واتجهزة البخار التي نستعمله في تنظيف المجالس بالبخار وشركتنا جاهزه في اي وقت يحدده العميل لنا وعلي اتم الاستعداد لاي عمل يئمرنا به
    شركة تنظيف بابها
    شركة تنظيف مجالس بابها
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بابها
    شركة تنظيف خزانات بابها
    شركة تسليك مجاري بابها
    شركة تسليك مجاري بخميس مشيط
    شركة تنظيف بخميس مشيط
    شركة تنظيف خزانات بخميس مشيط
    شركة تنظيف مجالس بخميس مشيط
    شركة مكافحة حشرات بخميس مشيط

    ReplyDelete