wedding photography , random shots ?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Scrukdog, Oct 16, 2004.

  1. Scrukdog

    Scrukdog Guest

    would a pro shooting digital use a light meter for random shots say at a
    wedding reception or probaly just shoot in program mode to be safe ?

    the light availabilty or lack of it would be changing as he moves about the
    room to get random shots and also his distance between his subject would also
    be changing constantly .

    would he use a light meter in church before the wedding or just keep checking
    his histogram (chimping) to make sure he got a correct exposure .

    do any of you guys and gals use light meters or just check your historgram ?.

    i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .

    thank you
    scrukdog
    Scrukdog, Oct 16, 2004
    #1
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  2. Scrukdog

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    (Scrukdog) writes:

    > would a pro shooting digital use a light meter for random shots say at a
    > wedding reception or probaly just shoot in program mode to be safe ?


    *boggle* I doubt it. Aperture maybe, but I often prefer to not give
    small lighting difference the opportunity to complete screw up the
    photos I'm taking.

    > the light availabilty or lack of it would be changing as he moves about the
    > room to get random shots and also his distance between his subject would also
    > be changing constantly .


    What does distance to subject have to do with exposure? I think you'd
    find that light availability changes much less than you might think.

    > would he use a light meter in church before the wedding or just keep checking
    > his histogram (chimping) to make sure he got a correct exposure .


    I can't think of a better way to ensure you missed every shot you
    wanted to get. *bad* workflow, no biscuit.

    > do any of you guys and gals use light meters or just check your historgram ?.
    >
    > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    > on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    > it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .


    *sigh*

    B>
    Bruce Murphy, Oct 16, 2004
    #2
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  3. Scrukdog wrote:
    > would a pro shooting digital use a light meter for random shots say at a
    > wedding reception or probaly just shoot in program mode to be safe ?
    >
    > the light availabilty or lack of it would be changing as he moves about
    > the
    > room to get random shots and also his distance between his subject would
    > also be changing constantly .
    >
    > would he use a light meter in church before the wedding or just keep
    > checking his histogram (chimping) to make sure he got a correct exposure .
    >
    > do any of you guys and gals use light meters or just check your historgram
    > ?.
    >
    > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i
    > view
    > it on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom
    > in on it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .
    >
    > thank you
    > scrukdog


    I have not shoot a wedding since long before digital came on the scene.
    I doubt if any wedding photographer is going to go to all that work. They
    will relay on their equipment and most of all their experience. I think you
    will find many different methods used. Checking a histogram?? I would
    think the only time that is likely to happen is when doing formals.
    Certainly not any candid shots.


    --
    Joseph E. Meehan

    26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
    Joseph Meehan, Oct 16, 2004
    #3
  4. In article <>, Scrukdog
    <> wrote:

    > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    > on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    > it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .


    Screw histograms. I've yet to see how they serve a useful purpose.
    Randall Ainsworth, Oct 16, 2004
    #4
  5. Scrukdog

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    Randall Ainsworth <> writes:

    > In article <>, Scrukdog
    > <> wrote:
    >
    > > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    > > on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    > > it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .

    >
    > Screw histograms. I've yet to see how they serve a useful purpose.


    They're not without their uses for ensuring your tonal range is sane
    for a completley static subject (ie still-lifes) but utterly useless
    if you're moving around (for example in this case)

    Of course, there's no such thing as a 'good histogram'. YOu need a
    pretty good idea of what the scene's brightness distribution /should/
    be before they provide much useful information.

    B>
    Bruce Murphy, Oct 16, 2004
    #5
  6. Scrukdog

    zeitgeist Guest


    > would a pro shooting digital use a light meter for random shots say at a
    > wedding reception or probaly just shoot in program mode to be safe ?
    >
    > the light availabilty or lack of it would be changing as he moves about

    the
    > room to get random shots and also his distance between his subject would

    also
    > be changing constantly .
    >
    > would he use a light meter in church before the wedding or just keep

    checking
    > his histogram (chimping) to make sure he got a correct exposure .
    >
    > do any of you guys and gals use light meters or just check your historgram

    ?.
    >
    > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i

    view it
    > on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in

    on
    > it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .
    >


    with RAW files you have negative film stock depth to your exposure gamma
    curve, if you are shooting jpg or tiff files then you need to be right on.

    histograms can jibberish if you can't place or identify the values. Get a
    gray card, go to the art store, or hardware store and buy some white and
    black masking tape, tape one third of the gray card with each. now fill the
    frame of your camera viewfinder with the card, and look at the histogram,
    you should see
    ____
    --------______

    a handheld meter tells you the light levels falling ON the subject, not what
    might be reflecting off

    in camera meters can be fooled by what the sensor is looking at, meters
    always assume a medium gray. if the sensor 'sees' a lot of black tux it
    will over expose. since digital is sensitive to overexposure amatuers might
    want to make sure the sensor is aimed at whites like the wedding dress. by
    using a hand held incident meter (which reads the light that is
    'incidentally' falling on the subject area) you get a suggestion for an
    exposure that will allow each value fall on their normal range from the
    middle, or as Dean Collins would say, the diffusive value.

    this reply is echoed to the z-prophoto mailing list at yahoogroups.com
    zeitgeist, Oct 16, 2004
    #6
  7. Scrukdog

    Clyde Guest

    Scrukdog wrote:
    > would a pro shooting digital use a light meter for random shots say at a
    > wedding reception or probaly just shoot in program mode to be safe ?
    >
    > the light availabilty or lack of it would be changing as he moves about the
    > room to get random shots and also his distance between his subject would also
    > be changing constantly .
    >
    > would he use a light meter in church before the wedding or just keep checking
    > his histogram (chimping) to make sure he got a correct exposure .
    >
    > do any of you guys and gals use light meters or just check your historgram ?.
    >
    > i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    > on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    > it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .
    >
    > thank you
    > scrukdog
    >
    >
    >


    I am an all digital wedding photographer. First, I never shoot random
    shots. I do shoot photojournalistic style shots of non-posed action that
    is happening. It is never random. I have spent a few decades learning
    and watching to be able to judge what is about to happen that will help
    tell the story. I'm certainly not always right, but more often than not,
    I get it. I get it because of years of experience. There is nothing
    random about it. Or "casual" either - another bad word for the process.

    [Mark Twain - "The difference between the right word and almost the
    right word is the difference between "lightning" and "lighting bug".]

    To successfully shoot weddings, you first have be absolutely in tune
    with your equipment. You have to know what it will do in every situation
    that you are going to encounter. The reason is that you HAVE to get
    everything and usually it will happen VERY fast. You can't wait to
    adjust, configure, or fiddle with your gear - in any way.

    Therefore, I shoot almost everything thing in the wedding in "P" mode. I
    just don't have time to even think about adjustments. I can't worry if
    my "A" mode will be going out of range or not. Also, every moment that
    you are looking at your camera, you aren't watching what is happening or
    about to happen.

    The only time I don't shoot in "P" is under studio lights. I usually
    bring and often setup a couple of strobes with umbrellas. Then I use my
    flash meter and set the camera full "M". Then I put everyone in the same
    place and shoot like crazy.

    I also shoot almost everything with a flash on a bracket. Yes, flash
    isn't the most "artistic" lighting. However, the number one rule in
    wedding photography is that "you have to get it!". I shoot the ceremony
    itself with no flash. On a tripod, if I can. Often handheld from odd
    places. Frankly, I don't get very many of those. I get enough to matter,
    but photographically it would be nice to have flash. Everything else
    gets flash - even all outside shots.

    If I have an artistic location AND if I have a bride who is willing to
    do it AND if I have time, I will shoot some artistic shots. If I have
    time and a place to use a studio strobe, I will. I have shot artistic
    shots handheld and in less than ideal lighting. They certainly don't
    always work. Frankly, all these "ifs" don't come together as often as we
    photographer dreamers would like. Usually you'll be lucky to get enough
    time and cooperation to get all the group shots she is demanding.

    BTW, I rarely have time to look at my camera, let alone histograms. You
    have to know and trust your equipment. Wedding photographer is a high
    stress, very fast, form of photographer that is never about the
    photographer or what he is trying to do. You have to do the very best
    with the least and still be as unnoticeable as you can be. Really, they
    don't give a damn about you or what you are trying to do. They just want
    perfect pictures with the least amount of trouble to get them. That's
    your job. If you do it, you'll have a happy bride who will love your
    work forever and never remember your name.

    Clyde
    Clyde, Oct 16, 2004
    #7
  8. Scrukdog

    Guest

    In message <161020040925093680%>,
    Randall Ainsworth <> wrote:

    >
    >In article <>, Scrukdog
    ><> wrote:
    >
    >> i check my historgram (canon 10d ) but at times im not so sure until i view it
    >> on my laptop ,sometimes it looks good on the historgram and when i zoom in on
    >> it also but dosen't look as good on the monitor or vice versa .

    >
    >Screw histograms. I've yet to see how they serve a useful purpose.


    That's because you're an old film dog, who can't learn new digital
    tricks.

    A histogram lets you know when you can reshoot to avoid clipping, or to
    boost the exposure to get better use of the sensor's dynamic range (and
    the levels output by the A2D converter). Of course, many of the cameras
    have half-assed histograms that show the content of the JPEG, and not of
    the RAW data.
    --

    <>>< ><<> ><<> <>>< ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<>
    John P Sheehy <>
    ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<> <>>< ><<> ><<> <>><
    , Oct 17, 2004
    #8
  9. Scrukdog

    Guest

    In message <>,
    Bruce Murphy <> wrote:

    >Of course, there's no such thing as a 'good histogram'. YOu need a
    >pretty good idea of what the scene's brightness distribution /should/
    >be before they provide much useful information.


    No; you're thinking film, where the middle zones have the most contrast.
    A digital image should always be exposed just short of clipping one RAW
    color channel, for maximum quality, assuming that no DOF or
    action-stopping shutter time is sacrificed, if needed (you can go to a
    higher ISO for this, too; on a DSLR, an ISO400 image exposed at +2 can
    actually be better quality than ISO 100 with no compensation, if the
    subject does not clip).
    --

    <>>< ><<> ><<> <>>< ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<>
    John P Sheehy <>
    ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<> <>>< ><<> ><<> <>><
    , Oct 17, 2004
    #9
  10. In article <>, <>
    wrote:

    > That's because you're an old film dog, who can't learn new digital
    > tricks.


    Got a point there. But as an experienced former professional, I know
    before pressing the button what the image will look like and have an
    idea of an corrections that might have to be made later. I don't need
    to look at a graph to know that.
    Randall Ainsworth, Oct 17, 2004
    #10
  11. Scrukdog

    Guest

    In message <161020041837145926%>,
    Randall Ainsworth <> wrote:

    >In article <>, <>
    >wrote:
    >
    >> That's because you're an old film dog, who can't learn new digital
    >> tricks.

    >
    >Got a point there. But as an experienced former professional, I know
    >before pressing the button what the image will look like and have an
    >idea of an corrections that might have to be made later. I don't need
    >to look at a graph to know that.


    A digital camera's sensor (which itself is not digital at all) and film
    have nothing in common, except that they lie in a focal plane and
    capture images. The rules of exposure are different.
    --

    <>>< ><<> ><<> <>>< ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<>
    John P Sheehy <>
    ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<> <>>< ><<> ><<> <>><
    , Oct 17, 2004
    #11
  12. Scrukdog

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    writes:

    > In message <>,
    > Bruce Murphy <> wrote:
    >
    > >Of course, there's no such thing as a 'good histogram'. YOu need a
    > >pretty good idea of what the scene's brightness distribution /should/
    > >be before they provide much useful information.

    >
    > No; you're thinking film, where the middle zones have the most contrast.


    No, I'm not. I'm talking about rendering scenes which will almost
    always exceed the available dynamic range of the sensor. A histogram
    can, if you understand what you expect to be there and where, permit
    you to make changes to exposure to ensure the captured range overlaps
    the correct parts of the image.

    > A digital image should always be exposed just short of clipping one RAW
    > color channel, for maximum quality, assuming that no DOF or
    > action-stopping shutter time is sacrificed,


    Actually, you'll almost always have to clip /something/, so this isn't
    helpful. Seeing where in the range the clipping happens is where the
    histogram is useful.

    > if needed (you can go to a
    > higher ISO for this, too; on a DSLR, an ISO400 image exposed at +2 can
    > actually be better quality than ISO 100 with no compensation, if the
    > subject does not clip).


    Better quality might be misleading here. The (sensor) noise will be of
    the same relative size (to the image) in both cases, you might get
    bitten slightly on the readout noise, but the 'quality' is assigning
    more bits of potential dynamic range to the image data.

    Too many variables to call, given how much readout noise seems to be
    able to vary between cameras.

    B>
    Bruce Murphy, Oct 17, 2004
    #12
  13. In article <>, <>
    wrote:

    > A digital camera's sensor (which itself is not digital at all) and film
    > have nothing in common, except that they lie in a focal plane and
    > capture images. The rules of exposure are different.


    I disagree, but once one is comfortable shooting digital and has an
    understanding of basic light and shadow to begin with, there is still
    no need to look at graphs.
    Randall Ainsworth, Oct 17, 2004
    #13
  14. Scrukdog

    Guest

    In message <>,
    Bruce Murphy <> wrote:

    > writes:


    >> In message <>,
    >> Bruce Murphy <> wrote:


    >> >Of course, there's no such thing as a 'good histogram'. YOu need a
    >> >pretty good idea of what the scene's brightness distribution /should/
    >> >be before they provide much useful information.


    >> No; you're thinking film, where the middle zones have the most contrast.


    >No, I'm not. I'm talking about rendering scenes which will almost
    >always exceed the available dynamic range of the sensor. A histogram
    >can, if you understand what you expect to be there and where, permit
    >you to make changes to exposure to ensure the captured range overlaps
    >the correct parts of the image.


    OK; I thought you were talking about things like shooting a dark grey
    object against a black background, and keeping the exposure towards the
    left of the histogram.

    >> A digital image should always be exposed just short of clipping one RAW
    >> color channel, for maximum quality, assuming that no DOF or
    >> action-stopping shutter time is sacrificed,

    >
    >Actually, you'll almost always have to clip /something/, so this isn't
    >helpful. Seeing where in the range the clipping happens is where the
    >histogram is useful.


    If there are no specular highlights in a scene, you don't have to clip
    anything, but of course, you are free to sacrifice some of your
    highlights for the sake of the rest of the image.

    >> if needed (you can go to a
    >> higher ISO for this, too; on a DSLR, an ISO400 image exposed at +2 can
    >> actually be better quality than ISO 100 with no compensation, if the
    >> subject does not clip).

    >
    >Better quality might be misleading here. The (sensor) noise will be of
    >the same relative size (to the image) in both cases, you might get
    >bitten slightly on the readout noise, but the 'quality' is assigning
    >more bits of potential dynamic range to the image data.
    >
    >Too many variables to call, given how much readout noise seems to be
    >able to vary between cameras.


    Most DSLRs are pretty good at ISO 400. The readout noise should be
    insignificant compared to the quantization noise of a D2A conversion
    with two less bits (relative to analog sensor exposure). We're talking
    about 4x the step size for ISO 100 compared to ISO 400 @ +2. It's not
    until 800 and above on most DSLRs that things get a little hairy. At
    the lower ISOs, quantization of the shadows is the real enemy. The
    lowest range of linear 12-bit RAW data (after blackpoint subtraction) of
    an uncompensated exposure has less resolution than the 8-bit
    gamma-corrected display data can convey. The reason you see so much
    noise in the shadows of an ISO 100 image boosted by 4 stops is not just
    the noise level itself; it is the quantization of the noise and signal.
    --

    <>>< ><<> ><<> <>>< ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<>
    John P Sheehy <>
    ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<> <>>< ><<> ><<> <>><
    , Oct 17, 2004
    #14
  15. Scrukdog

    Guest

    In message <161020042146490860%>,
    Randall Ainsworth <> wrote:

    >In article <>, <>
    >wrote:
    >
    >> A digital camera's sensor (which itself is not digital at all) and film
    >> have nothing in common, except that they lie in a focal plane and
    >> capture images. The rules of exposure are different.

    >
    >I disagree, but once one is comfortable shooting digital and has an
    >understanding of basic light and shadow to begin with, there is still
    >no need to look at graphs.


    The bottom line is, if you carry over you film-think to digital, you may
    be robbing yourself of the best possible captures.

    If the cameras had a true RAW histogram on the back, you would clearly
    see when you could have increased the exposure. Even without the true
    histogram, on the 10D, if nothing is flashing black in the image next to
    the histogram, and there is no cramming at the top, then you can still
    expose by a stop more if you're shooting RAW, and get less noise, and
    finer quantization.
    --

    <>>< ><<> ><<> <>>< ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<>
    John P Sheehy <>
    ><<> <>>< <>>< ><<> <>>< ><<> ><<> <>><
    , Oct 17, 2004
    #15
  16. Scrukdog

    Ken Tough Guest

    Clyde <> wrote:

    >[Mark Twain - "The difference between the right word and almost the
    >right word is the difference between "lightning" and "lighting bug".]


    Is he suggesting a lighting bug in firmware, or hardware? ;-]

    --
    Ken Tough
    Ken Tough, Oct 17, 2004
    #16
  17. Scrukdog

    Mr Jessop Guest

    <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > In message <161020042146490860%>,
    > Randall Ainsworth <> wrote:
    >
    >>In article <>, <>
    >>wrote:
    >>
    >>> A digital camera's sensor (which itself is not digital at all) and film
    >>> have nothing in common, except that they lie in a focal plane and
    >>> capture images. The rules of exposure are different.

    >>
    >>I disagree, but once one is comfortable shooting digital and has an
    >>understanding of basic light and shadow to begin with, there is still
    >>no need to look at graphs.

    >
    > The bottom line is, if you carry over you film-think to digital, you may
    > be robbing yourself of the best possible captures.
    >
    > If the cameras had a true RAW histogram on the back, you would clearly
    > see when you could have increased the exposure. Even without the true
    > histogram, on the 10D, if nothing is flashing black in the image next to
    > the histogram, and there is no cramming at the top, then you can still
    > expose by a stop more if you're shooting RAW, and get less noise, and
    > finer quantization.


    I look for the flashing black parts. I am slowly gaining in experience as
    to when the meter gets it right. My 300d metering isn't the best in the
    world. The best thing about raw is the exposure latitude. The detail is
    there to be brought out if needed. I do beleive in getting as much as
    possible dealt with in camera though.
    Mr Jessop, Oct 17, 2004
    #17
  18. Scrukdog

    Clyde Guest

    Ken Tough wrote:
    > Clyde <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>[Mark Twain - "The difference between the right word and almost the
    >>right word is the difference between "lightning" and "lighting bug".]

    >
    >
    > Is he suggesting a lighting bug in firmware, or hardware? ;-]
    >


    The bug is certainly hardware, but the light of the bug is firmware.
    Now, lightning is software with a very complex program. It's fast though.

    Clyde
    Clyde, Oct 18, 2004
    #18
  19. Scrukdog

    bob Guest

    Randall Ainsworth <> wrote in
    news:161020040925093680%:

    > Screw histograms. I've yet to see how they serve a useful purpose.
    >


    I live by histograms. Histograms show you where the exposure lies. Rather
    like using a densiometer on a negative.

    If the histogram shows you are not using the full range of the sensor, then
    you can adjust the exposure so that you are, which will give better tonal
    separation (regardless of final print density).

    The histogram function on my Nikon also flashes the parts of the image that
    are overexposed (clipped), which lets you judge if those areas are areas
    which require detail or not.

    Histograms are even more important when editing images on the computer
    prior to printing, but that's another issue altogether.

    Bob

    --
    Delete the inverse SPAM to reply
    bob, Oct 19, 2004
    #19
  20. Scrukdog

    bob Guest

    Randall Ainsworth <> wrote in
    news:161020042146490860%:

    > I disagree, but once one is comfortable shooting digital and has an
    > understanding of basic light and shadow to begin with, there is still
    > no need to look at graphs.
    >


    That's only true if you fully test your equipment in advance and use a spot
    meter. As much as I dig my spot meter, the histogram meters the whole scene
    at once and displays it in an easy to understand picture.

    Given all the various settings on my camera, it would take weeks to test
    them under all the different lighting situations I'm likely to encounter.
    Because I'm likely to own more than one digital camera in my life, learning
    to use the tools it comes with makes sense to me.

    Bob

    --
    Delete the inverse SPAM to reply
    bob, Oct 19, 2004
    #20
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