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Keep Shooting! Photography Assignments (04 Feb 2013)

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Expose to the right: Good or bad advice?

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4 years 4 weeks ago #3994 by Robert
Hi Greg,
I have a few friends that say that ETTR is the way to go and you probably know the reasons why.

I accidentally did an experiment that told me that this isn't a great idea because it introduced color shifts in my photo.

My wife is an EMT and I photographed her at her ambulance which is white with orange accents. I accidentially forgot to change the ISO when I went outside and over exposed the first shot by several stops.

I adjusted the camera and then took another properly exposed shot.

Normally, I'd have junked the first shot but I decided to "bring down the exposure" in Lightroom to see if I could make them match...to see what the effect of over exposing was.

Well, to my surprise, the orange and reds were far off from the true colors...and no amount of "fixing" in LR would make them accurate. I might not have known this if I hadn't had the properly exposed image right next to it.


What are your thoughts on this technique?

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4016 by jerry
I will never figure this one out, if you expose for the highlights, your shadows will be underexposed, if you expose for the shadows, your highlights will be overexposed. I've always like to expose for the shadows. But Greg, I guess, likes to expose for the highlights.

I usually like to underexpose by 1 or 2 lines from the mid point Guess it depends on the shot.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4018 by Bill
it's good advice! I'll try to post some pics showing the reason why you want to shoot to the right. I've been very busy lately so give me a little time.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4019 by Gregory Cazillo
See this video...Can you post before/after examples of your images so we can see what you are talking about?


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4 years 3 weeks ago #4021 by Conor Casey
Like Jerry and Bill, I always try to expose for the shadows. Alternatively, you can bracket your shot and blend later in PS.

I find it is easier to recover blown highlights than very dark shadows. With opening up clogged shadows, you get a lot more noise as opposed to bringing down the highlights. That's my logic behind it anyway. :)

Conor Casey
Flickr

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4031 by jerry
Thanks Greg, this helped big time to see someone that knows what they are talking about explain and show examples. I have always tried underexposing a smidge, but now I think I will try a bit of overexposure.

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4 years 3 weeks ago - 4 years 3 weeks ago #4032 by jerry
Ok, so I tried this under/over exposure thing. I just got done with working 4-12's and a bit thirsty, so why not kill 2 birds and once...lol. Sorry this may be a bit blurry as I took this with 2 slow of a shutter speed. but the point is, overexposing does look better, the only difference here is the ISO the darker image at ISO 800, the better exposed image at ISO 1600.

Again, thank you Greg for clearing this up for me/us. ;)
Attachments:
Last Edit: 4 years 3 weeks ago by jerry.

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4036 by Bill
miller 64! my Wife's FAVE!!!

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4 years 3 weeks ago #4037 by jerry
lol, mine to, i drank miller my whole life, until 64 came out, then i changed to that, guess are 15 odd years of miller, i guess i got sick of the blue can

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4 years 3 weeks ago - 4 years 3 weeks ago #4054 by Bill
ok folks here's why we "shoot to the right"! These are not edited at all except for the one the listed as corrected.

This is the correct exposure according to the in camera meter shutter speed-1/50 nice even nothing overexposed
raw file size:17.1MB


TTR correct bycamera by reburg_99 , on Flickr

same photo with the exposure shot to the right a little. The shutter speed is 1/49 nothing is over exposed and little more light and data to work with.
Raw file size:17.3MB


TTR corect by histograh by reburg_99 , on Flickr

underexposed by 1 stop, I went a little extreme to help clarify the point!
shutter speed 1/200
Raw file size:16.5


TTR 1 Stop under by reburg_99 , on Flickr

Now here's the kicker when we try to correct the exposure on under exposed shot it looks horrible(see the grain garbage in the top right?) and it's still dark. Compare the correctly exposed photo to the one that's been corrected in Lightroom. I boosted the exposure to +2 an still have no where near the amount of light in photo as the correctly exposed one. Look at how dark the caterpillar is! In the 1st 2 shots I can easily darken the image but we can't get light that wasn't captured to begin with.


TTR 1 stop under corrected by reburg_99 , on Flickr

The concept is not to shoot so far to the right that the photo is blown out, but that you have enough data to work with to produce a good image in the end. The under exposed shot has almost 1MB less data to work with, in Greg's words a smaller bucket to drain. I hope this explains what we mean by shoot to the right!
Last Edit: 4 years 3 weeks ago by Bill.

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