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Exposure is the total amount of light allowed to fall on a sensor or film during the taking of a photograph. This is determined by the exposure time (shutter speed) and amount of light admitted (lens aperture). Today, sensor/film sensitivity (ISO speed) is often also considered to be part of ...

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12
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9answers
5k views

How do I take a portrait at night with detail in the background instead of just blackness?

I was trying to make a photo of my girlfriend around 9 pm with a D7000, Sigma 24-70 2.8, and SB-900. She was in the center of the frame, taking up about 20% of the frame. About 40% was taken up by ...
14
votes
5answers
807 views

What's a good ad-hoc replacement for a gray card?

I know that a real gray card is the best thing to use to determine exposure. But I'd like to know if there are other naturally available features that can be used in a quick and dirty way. Are fields ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I take automatically bracketed exposures with the Canon XSi?

I'm trying to help someone with a Canon XSi. I'm not used to the Canons that use menus (rather than buttons on the body). Does anyone know how to set up the Canon XSi to take a bracketed exposure of ...
8
votes
3answers
751 views

Why do two different cameras using the same settings produce photos with different exposure levels?

Please refer to this photo: The image on the left was taken with a Panasonic GH2, a micro-4/3rds camera with a crop factor of 2, and the right one was taken with a Nikon D700, a full-frame camera. ...
16
votes
8answers
6k views

What is the best way to handle overexposed sky in post-processing?

I'm new at photography and I have taken some pictures where the subjects in the foreground are exposed correctly but the sky is very overexposed. What is the best way to handle it in post production? ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

How do I get this “Washed out” effect for street photography?

I was browsing an unrelated question here and noticed this photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sparth/5730541580/lightbox/ I've seen countless street-photography shots with this kind of color effect ...
4
votes
1answer
190 views

How do I compensate for lack of exposure lock on a Canon AV-1?

I just got my first roll of film printed and noticed that some of the exposures were off. I don't know why I didn't notice this before but there isn't an AE-lock on the Canon AV-1. My question is, ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

Why are there limitations to the upper limit of exposure time in digital cameras?

For example, my Canon 550D will only go as far as 30 sec (and then of course the bulb mode). For measuring exposure, I think all the camera needs is a timer, and I have no doubt they would have to do ...
13
votes
3answers
703 views

What is Bulb Mode?

My camera has a 'bulb mode,' and several questions on photo-SE refer to using Bulb Mode. A few questions: What is 'Bulb Mode?' Why is it called 'Bulb Mode?' What is 'Bulb Mode used for?
17
votes
4answers
11k views

How do I “focus and recompose” using spot metering?

I usually use the "[auto]focus and recompose" method for taking candid photographs. In situations where there is a high degree of contrast, I would like to use spot metering to correct expose for ...
23
votes
5answers
6k views

Are there general rules for selecting the correct shutter speed and ISO in manual mode?

I have purchased my first DSLR (a Canon 500D) and have been playing around quite a lot within the aperture priority mode, with auto shutter speed and ISO. Anyways as I would like to become a better ...
10
votes
4answers
971 views

How to choose the correct exposure?

I have a Canon 60D that I use for my primary hobby that is photography, but sometimes the pictures that I took are with the incorrect exposure like this: So I want to know how I can choose the ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Should I use low-end expanded ISO?

My Pentax K-5 comes with a "regular" low ISO setting of 100, but if you enable "expanded ISO" you can set it as low as 80 (plus go up to an absurd 51200!). I know that in general to reduce noise, ...
4
votes
3answers
636 views

Why would one recompose after setting exposure?

I am reading Bryan Peterson's book Understanding Exposure. Quoting text from the book: I set up my camera and 75-300mm lens on a tripod. I set my focal length to 130mm and aperture to f/32 and ...
29
votes
8answers
5k views

Should I shoot underexposed photos?

Someone more experienced than me said that he always shoots so that his photos are underexposed (darker) and I should too. The reasoning being that you can always increase the exposure in ...
13
votes
6answers
19k views

How to take fast-shutter-speed photos that aren't dark?

I was taking pictures of some water splashes. I knew I needed a fast shutter speed to make them look frozen in time. I have not used manual mode yet. I use the settings where I can pick the shutter ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the result of stacking ND filters in terms of total stops?

If you stack two 3-stop neutral density filters, does it reduce the exposure by 6 stops or 9 stops?
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Why should I use the Zone System when the histogram gives me all the information I need?

DSLR cameras, by and large, give very complete information about how the photo is exposed, in the form of a histogram and image of a trial exposure. It shows the light distribution for both luminance ...
1
vote
1answer
190 views

Photography concepts using SX20

I've bought a Powershot sx20 half a year ago and I'm quite happy with it although I know it doesn't compare to a DSLR. I've learning photography on my own: bought a 58mm ring and some filters (cpl, ...
14
votes
2answers
6k views

What is the difference between luminance and illuminance?

The more I read about this, the more confused I become. Illuminance, as I understand it, measured in lux, is the perceived brightness of light on a surface. It's what you'd measure with an incident ...
8
votes
3answers
383 views

Does spot/partial metering always assume 18%?

I'm beginning to work on understanding and hopefully effectively using different metering modes in my photography. I have done some reading and understand the benefit of using spot and partial ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

How to calculate Lux from EV?

Instead of looking up a chart, how can I calculate Lux from EV? Thanks!
1
vote
2answers
619 views

What is the quantitative relation between f/# of the lens (aperture), exposure, and ISO?

Let's say we shoot with a DSLR camera and we have two interchangeable lenses. Lens #1 has aperture f/X, X between 1 and 2 (see below). Lens #2 is f/4.5. Same focal length and other characteristics as ...
2
votes
4answers
509 views

Consistent image exposure using Canon AV (aperture priority) setting for artwork

Sorry this isn't a clearcut question. I've been setting up to shoot artwork. I'm using the AV setting on my cannon which allows me to set a higher aperture (5.6) and set the ISO (100). The problem ...
6
votes
4answers
7k views

How do I know I have the correct exposure when shooting in manual mode?

I have a Canon XTI which I've been using for a few years now. Most of the time I'm been shooting in one of the "semi-manual" modes like aperture priority or shutter priority, but now I'd like to try ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

How to achieve pictures filled with light like these?

I would like to know how to achieve the effect of highly exposed pictures filled with light like the ones presented below: unknown source From http://dziecisawazne.pl/iza-faber/ Is this ...
15
votes
5answers
5k views

How do you make a shot look like it was taken at night?

Okay, so I was watching a movie recently, and there was a night scene. The whole valley could be seen in light, and there were some stars as well, and the actors could be seen, but it just looked like ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

How can I simulate a long exposure photo using a set of shorter exposure photos?

I'm shooting towards the sky to capture the stars. The exposure time is 15 seconds, so I can see the stars still, without a trace. These photos are taken continuously one after the other, because I ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Do the same camera settings lead to the same exposure across different sensor sizes?

Let's say I have a micro-4/3rd camera and a full frame camera, both set to 1/60 at f/2.8, taking a picture of the same scene in the same lighting. Will the exposure be the same across both cameras ...
14
votes
2answers
767 views

When comparing sensor dynamic range, what are those numbers based on?

Dynamic range EV's are bandied about all the time and I get the feeling that a) they're not on the same 'scale' and b) they're misleading in what they're indicating so I'm hoping somebody can clarify. ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

How do different aperture and shutter settings affect a photo with the same overall exposure?

Ok, here's my doubt. Suppose I want to get a certain exposure for an image. Keeping the ISO constant, there are two tentative possibilities here: Put the camera at f 1.4 (say) and at 1/1600 shutter ...
24
votes
5answers
2k views

How to cope with high contrast?

Many times (especially around midday), we encounter lighting situations where the contrast of the scene is too high to capture with a camera. What can we do to create a useful picture in such ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

Can you fix incorrect exposure during post processing?

If a photo is over or under exposed but not to the point of clipping (histogram does not reach the left or right side) is there any reason you couldn't just fix the exposure in Photoshop or Lightroom? ...
10
votes
4answers
890 views

Do any other manufacturers other than Canon use the terms Av and Tv?

Canon uses "Av" (aperture variable) for the automatic exposure mode that entails the user choosing the aperture and the camera body choosing the shutter speed. This mode is called "A" by Nikon, and I ...
29
votes
6answers
9k views

How do I use spot metering?

What's the right way to use spot metering? Is it better to use in manual mode than one of the priority modes? There's a question about when to use spot metering, but none that serves as a tutorial to ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

Does longer exposure increase saturation?

I have read that longer exposure times lead to increase/improved saturation and that landscape photogs use ND filters to allow for longer exposures to get better saturation. Is this true and does ...
13
votes
2answers
810 views

Capturing vapour or faint steam

I was trying to capture a scene that was in a dark area with a bright background. There was faint steam that I wanted to be the focus of the picture. I tried first by having a very large aperture and ...
3
votes
1answer
772 views

Creating Proper Exposure with a Pentax PZ10

Not long ago, my Pentax K1000 was damaged and I upgraded to the Pentax PZ10 (both film cameras). I feel lost with trying to get the right exposure on the PZ10; with the K1000 I used a third-party ...
10
votes
5answers
4k views

Should I use Manual or (semi-)automatic mode for timelapse in changing light?

I'm planning a long road trip (east coast to west coast, about 45 hours of driving) and am thinking about shooting a time-lapse video of my drive. As I can expect the light levels to change pretty ...
11
votes
4answers
5k views

What are good exposure and timing choices for time lapse photography?

I am shooting a time lapse and am doing some calculations beforehand to make sure I get everything right. I am shooting a road trip from the west coast to the east coast and am planning to compress ...
21
votes
1answer
884 views

What is “reciprocity failure”?

What is "reciprocity failure" when used in the context of film?
10
votes
2answers
417 views

Why does exposure compensation have no effect with my hotshoe flash?

Taking photos with my Canon XTi and 550ex. Camera exposure compensation did not seem to effect the exposures. I figured out I needed to use the on-flash exposure comp. But the flash output is ...
47
votes
4answers
4k views

What is Ansel Adams' “Zone System”?

I've heard much of Ansel Adams' Zone system, but I've never quite understood it. What is it, how and where is it used, and is it still useful with modern (digital) cameras? Thanks!
17
votes
3answers
8k views

How do I predict exposure when using flash?

So I've got the basics down for the exposure triangle, but sometimes you just need to add more light to the room and the flash can be the most convenient way of doing that. The problem is that the ...
22
votes
4answers
563 views

What's “real” and what's “virtual” on a (digital) camera?

I recently upgraded from a standard compact digital camera to one of the newish "halfway cameras", hoping to get a bit better at taking photographs through having a little more control over the ...
90
votes
6answers
16k views

What is the “exposure triangle”?

What is the exposure triangle? How do the "sides" affect my photographs?
23
votes
9answers
1k views

How can I take pictures of far-away mountains to the South?

I'm trying to take some pictures of a pair of mountains to my south. The distance is about 20 miles away. I'm running into the following problems, and I'm wondering what you guys might suggest to get ...
26
votes
7answers
5k views

When to use shutter priority instead of aperture priority?

Under what circumstances would you use aperture priority vs. shutter priority and vice-versa? I typically don’t use shutter priority (ever) and favor aperture priority to try to get a max aperture ...
6
votes
4answers
6k views

What does “long exposure” mean?

Very often, when people are talking about photography, they use the expression "long exposure". Here's a quote from a recent answer: A tripod and long exposure were required for this shot. Where ...
12
votes
3answers
668 views

How do you photograph Christmas Lights?

How can you best photograph Christmas lights? I've had tons of problems, the auto-meters don't work at all, and I'm fairly clueless, other than to get a tripod and keep trying until something ...