Using exposure metering effectively.

I’m really enjoying the electronic viewfinder in my Fuji cameras. Being able to adjust the image to approximate how you see the final version after processing is such a time-saver. My colour processing (albeit the smaller portion of my processing – I do far more monochrome images) has speeded up because I now have to do very little in Lightroom and Photoshop.I still use RAW but once imported into Lightroom I normally apply a camera calibration in the form of Classic Chrome. White and black points are checked and adjusted if necessary and then I export the image out to Photoshop CC for sharpening with NIK Sharpener.

The two images below are the same image but processed to a different final image. Both were taken in the ice-house at Calke Abbey. As its use implies, the structure is below the ground. There was light coming in from the window high in front of me and some soft light to my rear from the open door.

I always use manual mode and auto ISO on my cameras and so taking a picture with matrix metering will mean the camera will use the ISO it deems suitable for a correctly exposed picture with the shutter speed and F stop I have set on the camera. In my case this could be 6400 and it will use the ISO to try to raise the dark areas of the picture tonally to an 18% grey reflectance. This will result in a blown out window and very noisy shadows. So I used spot metering and took the exposure reading from part of the window and the wall. I then altered the aperture and shutter speed to get the ISO down to 1250. Back-button focussing means I can focus and then take my time over the exposure without worrying about holding the shutter button down to retain focus.

This enables me to obtain a RAW image which allowed me to process it as I saw fit. The first image below is a more tonally open image allowing some detail of the ice-house to come through. The second image is meant to be more mysterious and could perhaps even be an old prison cell.

Metering carefully with a visualization of how you want the final image to look will always produce more effective RAW files than shooting and hoping for the best.








2 thoughts on “Using exposure metering effectively.

  1. Hi Carol, the top one was the first image I did and how I wanted it to come out. However I rather liked the strip of light at the bottom and wondered how I could use that as more of a focal point so I re-processed it with a bias towards a more atmospheric image.


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