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Thread: What's wrong with the sky

  1. #1
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    What's wrong with the sky

    Hi a little help with my photo's would be appreciated. Photos taken with my first SLR camera a Nikon D90 have strange colored sky's. The blue chn in the histogram is almost non existent.

    DSC_0396.jpg

    Same place zoomed in a bit and the sky is how it should be.

    DSC_0395.jpg

    More test photos

    DSC_0515.jpg

    DSC_0516.jpg

    I have tried different settings Auto, P mode with reduce aperture etc. The white balance seems OK
    is it that the sky is actually overexposed ? The histogram doesn't seem to indicate that.
    Thanks for looking.

    Robert

  2. #2

    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Do correct me if I'm wrong. Was shot in RAW?

    I was rather taken aback the first few times I shot RAW too, especially if you use "neutral". Photos come up looking bland, dull and washed out. This problem can easily be resolved by increasing vibrancy or saturation.

    Other possible problems include,

    Mismatched colour space (sRGB vs AdobeRGB vs ProRGB)
    Use of filters, especially low quality ones. Good brands include B+W and Heliopan. Due to different light transmission rates across the light spectrum (spectral transmission), certain colours are filtered out.
    Last edited by Blazing fire; 3rd May 2010 at 04:17 AM.

  3. #3
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Hi Robert,

    They do look a lot like 'point and shoot' skies when wider angle, my suspicion is they are a bit over exposed, but this was because they were shot jpg in camera, which put an 8 bit limit on DR too soon. However, I'm not that confident in my suspicions to wager anything at all on it

    Sorry, must dash,

    Cheers,

  4. #4

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    Have a guess :)

    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Hi Robert,

    It's all to do with exposure; all colours have a (different) "sweet spot" for maximum saturation ... above the "sweet spot" the colour starts to wash out (as is happening here) and below the "sweet spot" the colour just starts to go dark. For saturated blues you need to under-expose by something in the region of 2 stops which (unfortunately) has a flow-on effect on the rest of the image - but it can be dealt to by various means.

    In this quick re-work, I've reduced the exposure by exactly 2 stops to show you what I mean ...

    What's wrong with the sky
    Last edited by Colin Southern; 3rd May 2010 at 07:58 AM.

  5. #5

    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Colour is 'seen' by the way light reflects off the surface of things. In very bright light that will affect the way the colours are seen. You are in Australia, and although there are a few longish shadows, I'm guessing you took them at a bright part of the day. Try early morning or late afternoon, or try a polarizer on the lens which will at least make the sky a deeper colour. What time of day were they shot?

  6. #6
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Hi, you could use a soft GND 4 filter ( graduated neutral density ).

    But I try to get my histogram banged up to the right with a tiny bit blown and shoot in RAW. (unless there is a lot of red orange yellow ect then I really underexpose). Then use ACR to raise the shadows with fill light.

  7. #7
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    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Thanks for your replies.

    The photos are not RAW just jpg with the standard Nikon defaults.
    No filters used and the first two were taken at 10:50am while the others
    were taken at 14:40pm.

    This is another shot at a different angle further down the hill at 10:52. It was taken in P mode with a -0.33ev adjustment. The sky is the more natural blue color which after a little work in Picture Window Pro looks OK.

    As taken
    DSC_0405.jpg

    After adjustment
    DSC_0405-1.jpg

  8. #8
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    Re: What's wrong with the sky

    Robert, I've found my Nikon D40 does better on those clouds 'n' sky shots with a -0.66 exposure compensation. Our colors and sunshine are similar to yours, as we are in the desert in central Washington State.

    I prefer to under expose, as I can bring up detail and highlights later when under exposed. If overexposed, blown highlights are gone forever.

    Pops

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