Exposing to the right and raw

Started Jul 16, 2014 | Questions thread
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Exposing to the right and raw
Jul 16, 2014

This may be a simple answer but to be honest I've never been quite sure how it works when using raw.  Let's say I have a picture of a bright sky with clouds and below it a dark green forest.  Basically I'm trying to bring up shadow with the least amount of noise.

If I take a picture in raw and expose to the right close to getting my highlights blown out but not quite there, say +3, then open up the file in LR 4.  In LR I can see that all settings including exposure are set to zero.

What I'm not sure about is if LR lowered my exposure to zero from the +3 I added so in effect my photo no longer shows the modified exposure of +3 or if the zero means nothing really and the raw picture still has the +3 added?  In this case if I wanted to bring out the shadows, do I lower the exposure to -3 and then lift the shadows for the forest or do I leave the exposure to 0 and simply lift the shadows?

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