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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Understanding the histogram

I've made a big push this year (I know, the year is young) to not rely on what my camera indicated as a good exposure, but to use that as a starting point, and then adjust based on my camera's histogram.

I downloaded a terrific e-book by David Duchemin called Chasing-the-look (btw it's only $5.00 USD), and noticed he has written about this subject on his blog.   If you are a visual/hands on learner like me, check out David's podcasts here. I've watched a couple of them -- and find them interesting and informative.

Anyhoo -- after reading his article on Exposure and Metering -- I thought I'd give it a whirl. Lucky for Rick -- he got to be my subject! Now the little room that I was shooting in is dim (kindof like me) so I went ahead and cranked the ISO way on up there -- so excuse the noise.

Instead of bumping up the exposure compensation button -/+, I decreased the shutter speed (I'll try the exp comp -/+ method tomorrow). I watched the histogram as it slowly crept to the right (light) side of the scale. I was looking at the histogram for signs that it was running off on the right hand side (image #5). Note -- the histograms in the image are from Photoshop -- but closely resembled my camera's histogram.  The above images on the left hand side are SOTC.

#1 is what my camera indicated as the correct exposure.  Based on the histogram, I was digging #3 and #4 a whole lot more.

After processing the two in Photoshop, I was still leaning towards #3 as the better of the two, although there really isn't too much difference.

So, here's the winner of today's exercise (thank you Rick)!!!!

I'm going to make homemade Stromboli tonight with the leftover olive oil dough from a couple of days ago -- I hope to post pictures tomorrow of the outcome.

Have a great Sunday!!!!

:~D Frances

PS -- did the Cowboy's rock it yesterday evening??? And a woo hoo to the Raven's on their win today!!!!! You know I love Boston - but, I've become a fan of the Raven's since watching the Blindside!

1 comment:

  1. Interesting topic Frances. I, too have had to learn how to read the histrogram on the digital camera after going from film at school to digital at work.

    I have become a fan of podcasts and listen to ones on my iPod at night while falling asleep.

    Thanks for the info and I may try these exercises as well since I feel that everyday is another day to learn more!


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