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Thread: Trying to Step Outside My Box

  1. #1

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    Trying to Step Outside My Box

    I've been playing with my camera...trying to get outside of Scene Modes....Set on A too dark..Also tried P. that is really dark...looks like shutter speed was really fast. Do very many of you use this setting? I tried dialing down and up...the 0 blinks and has marks along side...doesn't that mean too much exposure??? Sorry, but I'm trying to learn and getting frustrated! Histrogram shows colors to left! Do most of you use this info?

  2. #2
    Stagecoach's Avatar
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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Terri,

    I'm not sure which camera you have but I think most would agree that the modern DSLR gives pretty good exposure results in most of the automatic modes as long as the scene is metered correctly.

    You say you are getting noticeable differences in results between modes but are you comparing the same scene and lighting with the camera having been metered on the same object in the same metering mode. Simply, if you take one scene with sky in it and leave the camera on the same settings you will get a vast difference depending on whether you meter on the sky or something darker in the foreground.

    Many of us use the histogram and the blinkies when time allows to try and ensure that no areas are overexposed to a state where they are clipped as detail will be lost.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Hi Terri,

    I think you're gonna have to give us a clue - please tell us what camera and lens you are using, or we may just confuse you further.

    Also need to know what you were trying to photograph and in what lighting conditions.

    Ideally post an example picture (if only to save the proverbial 1000 words)

    Thanks,

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    In many ways, Terri, using the Auto settings A or P isn't going to give you that much difference to using the Scene modes. In some cases it can be worse.

    Possibly what you need to do is to start experimenting with the manual or semi manual alternatives like Shutter Priority or Aperture Priority.

    Quite a lot to learn with these options though. But it does mean you can be fully in charge of how you take a photograph. That is the way many of us always shoot. Great fun but a steep learning curve!

    The problem is, when you get it wrong you can't blame the camera!

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post
    In many ways, Terri, using the Auto settings A or P isn't going to give you that much difference to using the Scene modes. In some cases it can be worse.

    Possibly what you need to do is to start experimenting with the manual or semi manual alternatives like Shutter Priority or Aperture Priority.

    Quite a lot to learn with these options though. But it does mean you can be fully in charge of how you take a photograph. That is the way many of us always shoot. Great fun but a steep learning curve!

    The problem is, when you get it wrong you can't blame the camera!
    This is set on aperture priority

    Trying to Step Outside My Box It states aperature set at f/9 Shutter speed 1/4000 Exposure -3.7 EV I'm using a Nikon 5100

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    That -3.7 EV setting is the issue; you are significantly underexposing the image. Try the normal setting of 0 EV, and only change the exposure compensation if there is something strange going on in the image (the histogram, not the viewfinder will provide you with that information.

    There should be a +/- button near the shutter release. Press it down and rotate your main adjustment wheel until it sets to 0.
    Last edited by GrumpyDiver; 17th August 2013 at 10:30 PM.

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Terri, this pic is vastly underexposed. Also your shutter speed appears to be abnormally high. Why may I ask were you setting your exposure compensation? It looks like you were asking the camera to decrease the exposure almost 4 stops.

    Bruce

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Terri, this pic is vastly underexposed. Also your shutter speed appears to be abnormally high. Why may I ask were you setting your exposure compensation? It looks like you were asking the camera to decrease the exposure almost 4 stops.

    Bruce
    Your not kidding. I wondered if it was that exposure setting...I didn't change it...maybe I did something in error. will check.

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    That -3.7 EV setting is the issue; you are significantly underexposing the image. Try the normal setting of 0 EV, and only change the exposure compensation if there is something strange going on in the image (the histogram, not the viewfinder will provide you with that information.
    I wondered that too. You have to playback after you've taken picture for histogram, right?

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by terrig View Post
    Your not kidding. I wondered if it was that exposure setting...I didn't change it...maybe I did something in error. will check.
    Terri, your instruction manual is your best friend. Do not try to do to much to soon. Learn the basics.

    Bruce

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Terri, as the others have indicated, you need to learn about exposure compensation - it is altered by the +/- button on the top right of your camera, which you might have pressed by mistake.

    Philip

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by terrig View Post
    I wondered that too. You have to playback after you've taken picture for histogram, right?
    Yes, it is accessible in playback mode.

    Go into playback mode and pressing the multi-select control left or right will scroll through the images. pressing up or down will scroll through different display modes. There will be two different histograms that pop up; one is while on a black background and shows you an average of all of the colour channels. There is also a coloured one that shows each individual channel.

    You might find it easier if you use the mult-channel one to start. The histogram is simply a distribution of the tonal values across the screen; with the darks being on the left and lights on the right. The height of the bars just tells you the distribution at a particular value. If you have a bar at the right, that will indicate pure white values (blown highlights); generally you don't want a lot of these, but in some shots it is unavoidable. If there is a bar all the way to the left, you have pure black values in the image, and this often means loss of shadow detail; also not desirable, but better than blown highlights.

    If most of the pixels are crammed into the left part of the histogram (left half or third), unless you are shooting a very dark scene, you are likely underexposed. Go the other way with all the pixels shoved to the right, chances are you are overexposed. Exposure compensation will help you bring these back to a mid-point value.

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Using any of the auto modes will give you "pretty good pictures"...if that's your goal.

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Stagecoach View Post
    Terri,

    I'm not sure which camera you have but I think most would agree that the modern DSLR gives pretty good exposure results in most of the automatic modes as long as the scene is metered correctly. I've set those up!

    You say you are getting noticeable differences in results between modes but are you comparing the same scene and lighting with the camera having been metered on the same object in the same metering mode. Simply, if you take one scene with sky in it and leave the camera on the same settings you will get a vast difference depending on whether you meter on the sky or something darker in the foreground.

    Many of us use the histogram and the blinkies when time allows to try and ensure that no areas are overexposed to a state where they are clipped as detail will be lost.

  15. #15

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by chauncey View Post
    Using any of the auto modes will give you "pretty good pictures"...if that's your goal.
    Yes, I guess I was trying to get beyond that.

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Terri, this pic is vastly underexposed. Also your shutter speed appears to be abnormally high. Why may I ask were you setting your exposure compensation? It looks like you were asking the camera to decrease the exposure almost 4 stops.

    Bruce
    Must have gotten changed.

  17. #17

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Terri, your instruction manual is your best friend. Do not try to do to much to soon. Learn the basics.

    Bruce
    Hey Bruce. You are entirely correct...I have a tendancy to move too fast. I was on Ken Rockwell's site. He said he has his picture mode set to Vivid and he does all of his shooting in P. What do you think?

  18. #18

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    That -3.7 EV setting is the issue; you are significantly underexposing the image. Try the normal setting of 0 EV, and only change the exposure compensation if there is something strange going on in the image (the histogram, not the viewfinder will provide you with that information.

    There should be a +/- button near the shutter release. Press it down and rotate your main adjustment wheel until it sets to 0.
    Got it...I replied to Bruce but you as well. I was on Ken Rockwell site....he says he sets his camera pic mode on Vivid and uses mainly P for settings. Would you agree with that theory?

  19. #19
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by terrig View Post
    Got it...I replied to Bruce but you as well. I was on Ken Rockwell site....he says he sets his camera pic mode on Vivid and uses mainly P for settings. Would you agree with that theory?
    Terri, P is for program which means that the camera will automatically set the aperture, and shutter for you. Using Vivid supposedly will give you more saturated colors. It may be good for flowers, landscapes. That sort of thing.
    I am guessing you own a Nikon camera. If you do not mind please confirm that.
    Letting the camera set the aperture (how much light hits the sensor), and the shutter (how long light hits the sensor) is not a bad idea until you learn more of the basics.
    Let the CiC members know how it goes.


    Bruce

  20. #20

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    Re: Trying to Step Outside My Box

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Terri, P is for program which means that the camera will automatically set the aperture, and shutter for you. Using Vivid supposedly will give you more saturated colors. It may be good for flowers, landscapes. That sort of thing.
    I am guessing you own a Nikon camera. If you do not mind please confirm that.
    Letting the camera set the aperture (how much light hits the sensor), and the shutter (how long light hits the sensor) is not a bad idea until you learn more of the basics.
    Let the CiC members know how it goes.


    Bruce
    Yes, I got the Nikon 5100. Ok. another question....then what is the difference between P and auto...apparently you rotate the dial until you get a setting that you want...Would this be a learning tool to understand and study?

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