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Thread: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

  1. #1

    Default Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    I took some pictures at the Lantern Safari 2005 and I noticed that a few of my pictures of the lantern turned out to be overexposed especially the lantern. Some examples below:





    My Exif data are as follows:
    Camera model: Canon EOS 350D DIGITAL
    Flash used: No
    Focal length: 39.0mm (35mm equivalent: 126mm)
    Exposure time: 5.000 s
    Aperture: f/8.0
    ISO equiv.: 100
    Whitebalance: Auto
    Metering Mode: matrix
    Exposure: aperture priority

    May I know what settings to use so that the lanterns and background can have the correct exposure?
    Last edited by msklee; 22nd September 2005 at 05:52 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Your camera detects that most of the frame is dark, so it increases the exposure, trying to brighten the dark areas. This in turn brightens the lights also.

    Try doing exposure compensation. Practise taking a lightbulb in a dark room.

    I don't think the 350D can manually select different metering modes, else u can use centre-weighted metering. (spot metering best, but 350D dun have.)

  3. #3
    Senior Member hhho's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Hi! msklee
    try using P (program) mode.
    let the camera decide the exposure for you.
    exposure time of most of my picture less than a second and F-stop between 4 - 5
    you will get correct exposure.
    Patrick Ho

  4. #4
    Senior Member Canew's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    I would do this:

    1. Select the 350D metering to PARTIAL metering. PARTIAL covers about 9% of the viewfinder area at the center.
    2. Use Tv or Av (depending on the situation and effect wanted). In your case, as the subject is stationary, you might want to control DOF, so use Av mode.
    3. Zoom in to one of the lanterns (from the EXIFs of the 2 photos, you are using a zoom lens) and get its exposure reading. Use 'AE Lock' (* symbol) to lock the reading.
    4. Re-compose your shot but use the AE locked setting.
    5. Take the picture.

    I would think that this method will prevent such over-exposed shots. Although the 350D does not have the SPOT metering, one may use the PARTIAL metering and zoom into the subject to capture its proper exposure.

    Please comment on my methodology if there are better alternatives to this problem.
    Last edited by Canew; 22nd September 2005 at 09:37 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by msklee
    May I know what settings to use so that the lanterns and background can have the correct exposure?

    Partial metering and exposure lock would help. However, the brightness of the lanterns is constant, but even partial metering will still result in quite a bit of variation, depending on exactly which detail you aim the meter at. The most consistent way is probably to use manual exposure and correct it using the image review to just avoid blown out highlights (I think the 350D will mark blown out regions on its display).

    The scene has very high contrast, which will be recorded by the camera as such. There is no good way to avoid overexposure of the lanterns without the background ending up dark. This is where (digital) darkroom work would come in. It is advisable to record raw images, as JPEG compression may throw away a lot of the image information in the shadows that you would try to bring out.

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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    The main problem under such situation is that high contrast between the latern and the dark backgorund. The camera is not smart, when your laterns only occupy about 20% of the entire composition, it will naturally take the majority which are the dark areas.

    It may be too late to do anything to save it as the over exposed parts is already burnt out.

    Under such situation, always do bracketting (do 1 shot overexpose by 1 stop and another underexpose by 1 stop) in this case better to go 1 and 2 stop under. Little wolf is correct in pointing out that partial metering the laterns to get the correct reading is a good way to go.

    As mentioned earlier, the composition, my choise try to get the individual laterns in the frame whould have not only improved the impact of the photo but also metered correcctly.

    Just my 2 cents worth.

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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    areality's right.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Canew
    I would do this:

    1. Select the 350D metering to PARTIAL metering. PARTIAL covers about 9% of the viewfinder area at the center.
    2. Use Tv or Av (depending on the situation and effect wanted). In your case, as the subject is stationary, you might want to control DOF, so use Av mode.
    3. Zoom in to one of the lanterns (from the EXIFs of the 2 photos, you are using a zoom lens) and get its exposure reading. Use 'AE Lock' (* symbol) to lock the reading.
    4. Re-compose your shot but use the AE locked setting.
    5. Take the picture.

    I would think that this method will prevent such over-exposed shots. Although the 350D does not have the SPOT metering, one may use the PARTIAL metering and zoom into the subject to capture its proper exposure.

    Please comment on my methodology if there are better alternatives to this problem.
    May i know whats the purpose of locking the lantern exposure? I nvr use AE lock before...

  9. #9
    Senior Member Canew's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by kensh09
    May i know whats the purpose of locking the lantern exposure? I nvr use AE lock before...
    kensh09, the intended subject of both the photos posted are the lanterns. Hence, the correct exposure for the photos should be the lanterns. By locking the exposure of the lanterns, it will prevent the over-exposure phenomena as expressed in the 2 photos posted by msklee (http://photobucket.com/albums/a352/m...=IMG_00161.jpg , http://photobucket.com/albums/a352/m...=IMG_00231.jpg).

    The photos will then be captured by exposing the lanterns properly, but you will loose out on the background details as it is too dark.
    Last edited by Canew; 22nd September 2005 at 11:33 AM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Quote Originally Posted by Canew
    kensh09, the intended subject of both the photos posted are the lanterns. Hence, the correct exposure for the photos should be the lanterns. By locking the exposure of the lanterns, it will prevent the over-exposure phenomena as expressed in the 2 photos posted by msklee (http://photobucket.com/albums/a352/m...=IMG_00161.jpg , http://photobucket.com/albums/a352/m...=IMG_00231.jpg).

    The photos will then be captured by exposing the lanterns properly, but you will loose out on the background details as it is too dark.
    oic....can use manual mode when using AE? So the general rule is to use AE on the main object which is impt so that wont under or over expose?
    Btw whats EXIFs?

    What about this photo below ? Is the AE spot on the cloud?

    Last edited by kensh09; 22nd September 2005 at 04:01 PM.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Canew's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    kensh09,

    can use manual mode when using AE? Yes.
    So the general rule is to use AE on the main object which is impt so that wont under or over expose? Yes.
    Btw whats EXIFs? Please refer to: http://www.dpreview.com/learn/?/Glos...em/EXIF_01.htm

    Yes, the exposure was captured from the mid-tones of the sky. That is why the trees (below of the photo) are under-exposed.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Need advices on overexposure pictures.

    Thanks for all your replies. It had really helped me to gain more knowledge about taking photos with bright subjects and dark background. Will try out the methods discussed in this thread.

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