GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show

Started Sep 1, 2013 | Discussions
hifi
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GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
Sep 1, 2013

These were taken with the Oly 45 and Sigma 60mm lenses.  Light levels were very low, and the lighting colors varied throughout the show, so this should explain for the differences.  I think I got the WB right?  Here a few, more in my gallery.  Thanks for looking.

ISO 5000.  GH3 holds up ok.

ronfab1
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to hifi, Sep 1, 2013

OK since these photos have been posted for 5 hours now without a peep from anyone (amazingly), I will say they are very, very nice. The 800 ISO does the lighting great and very cleanly. (Just came on Micro Four Thirds and saw them).

I wonder what the deal is with the "view count" being at 0 when I first opened them up? Can that be right? Everyone just ignored them for 5 hours?? Weird. Anyway great shots. I love my GH3, along with A77 and NEX 5N. Glad to see 800 looked that good as I use mine primarily for video.

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Kim Letkeman
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to hifi, Sep 1, 2013

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --
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ronfab1
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Kim Letkeman, Sep 1, 2013

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Wasn't my post, but lot of people had apparently come by in the middle of a long weekend.... it was 2/3 of the way to the dreaded disappearance off page one already......

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ronfab1
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Kim Letkeman, Sep 1, 2013

Kim, thanks for the stage lit scenario tips.  Yeah that is always a tough one.  With a shoulder rig 3 chip camera usually you have to keep your eye glued to the viewfinder or field monitor and ride the iris manually.  Not as friendly to do that with DSLR style shooting.  I bookmarked it.... 

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Pete Berry
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Kim Letkeman, Sep 2, 2013

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Strange, I find these images about as well exposed as possible under the terrible circus lighting conditions - certainly not overall overexposed. Well done, HiFi!

But I do find your blog stage shots all significantly underexposed, except for the last, particularly the three "portraits" with plugged, noisy shadows. And none of your examples show the stage lighting challenges the OP faced except for overall intensity. Perhaps he might have some tips for you?

PB

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Kim Letkeman
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Pete Berry, Sep 2, 2013

Pete Berry wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Strange, I find these images about as well exposed as possible under the terrible circus lighting conditions - certainly not overall overexposed. Well done, HiFi!

We're each more or less sensitive to exposure issues. I do not like burnt highlights. If you don't mind them then by all means shoot that way.

But I do find your blog stage shots all significantly underexposed, except for the last, particularly the three "portraits" with plugged, noisy shadows. And none of your examples show the stage lighting challenges the OP faced except for overall intensity.

Are you using a calibrated monitor? Because I am, and it sounds like you have a terrifically incorrect white point. These images probably look fine to you, although you should check the areas of detail-free grey as those are detail free white on my monitors

Perhaps he might have some tips for you?

Snotty comment acknowledged. You are very clever, at least according to you.

Get your monitors calibrated as there is no point having this discussion if you are seeing what you say you are seeing ...

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axlotl
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Re: Very nice pix, thanks for posting
In reply to hifi, Sep 2, 2013

Bravo for making such good pix in difficult circumstances.

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Pete Berry
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Kim Letkeman, Sep 2, 2013

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Pete Berry wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Strange, I find these images about as well exposed as possible under the terrible circus lighting conditions - certainly not overall overexposed. Well done, HiFi!

We're each more or less sensitive to exposure issues. I do not like burnt highlights. If you don't mind them then by all means shoot that way.

I would not sacrifice significant shadow detail in subjects to avoid blown random specular or spot highlights in stage lighting. You obviously choose otherwise.

But I do find your blog stage shots all significantly underexposed, except for the last, particularly the three "portraits" with plugged, noisy shadows. And none of your examples show the stage lighting challenges the OP faced except for overall intensity.

Are you using a calibrated monitor? Because I am, and it sounds like you have a terrifically incorrect white point. These images probably look fine to you, although you should check the areas of detail-free grey as those are detail free white on my monitors

You seem confused about white point, which governs monitor tint, but not the white saturation level you are referring to - a totally separate deal that is the luminance input point at which your monitor saturates to white.

If you are referencing the performer in the white shirt in images #1 and 2 and you are seeing the shirt as detail-free white (I see it as greyish with some variation and detail) then you have a serious problem with monitor reaching white saturation in the 230-40 range rather that at 255/255/255. Measuring the shirt color numbers in PS6 with a point sample never gets out of the mid 230's - very light grey. In fact, it's hard to find truly blown highlights to any degree by measurement in any of the OP's images.

You might find the Lagom monitor white saturation test very revealing:

http://www.lagom.nl/lcd-test/white.php

From you comments, I suspect you will see only white in most of the checkerboards. Which would make you very sensitive to highlights! I see the grey all the way down to level 254, as it should be. My black sat. is not quite as good, separating down to a still pretty good level 3. And yes, my monitor is meticulously calibrated for printing with an excellent print/monitor match - including highlight and shadow detail - under my 4700K Solux viewing light...

Perhaps he might have some tips for you?

Snotty comment acknowledged. You are very clever, at least according to you.

Clever enough to see the probable motivation for your dismissive post, which was to bathe him in the brilliance of your blog when it's obvious to me, and probably others, that he has handled the complexities of stage lighting better than most of your much less demanding, but technically poorer examples show.

Get your monitors calibrated as there is no point having this discussion if you are seeing what you say you are seeing ...

!!!

PB

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ronfab1
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to ronfab1, Sep 2, 2013

ronfab1 wrote:

OK since these photos have been posted for 5 hours now without a peep from anyone (amazingly), I will say they are very, very nice. The 800 ISO does the lighting great and very cleanly.

Big whoops!  I was so taken with the images and wanted to post after seeing 5 hours had gone by with no others, that I clearly wasn't paying attention after the 1st photo's EXIF that not all were 800 ISO, with the rest at various levels of much higher ISO......which is even more impressive given how clean.  The detail & color in the shadows and darker lit portions of the photos is just lovely.  Props again!

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Martin.au
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to hifi, Sep 2, 2013

I think these are great. Indoor low light is always a challenge. I'm not seeing too many blown out spots - none that stand out IMO - so I think they're exposed well.

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hifi
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to ronfab1, Sep 2, 2013

ronfab1 wrote:

ronfab1 wrote:

OK since these photos have been posted for 5 hours now without a peep from anyone (amazingly), I will say they are very, very nice. The 800 ISO does the lighting great and very cleanly.

Big whoops! I was so taken with the images and wanted to post after seeing 5 hours had gone by with no others, that I clearly wasn't paying attention after the 1st photo's EXIF that not all were 800 ISO, with the rest at various levels of much higher ISO......which is even more impressive given how clean. The detail & color in the shadows and darker lit portions of the photos is just lovely. Props again!

Many thanks!

I should mention that on some of these I did a slight de-noising.  I use the Topaz Labs plugin.  It works very well, but also the GH3 sensor does good for high ISO - much better than the first generation m43 sensors.

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hifi
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Kim Letkeman, Sep 2, 2013

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Thanks for the feedback.  You are right - the hot stage lights do make for a tricky setup for getting a nice balance in the exposure right.  I always shoot raw + jpg and the raw files really helped me here.  It was more of a processing challenge for these because of the dynamic range, ranging from the white shirt in the spotlight to the dark shadows in the same shot.  In ACR, I brought the highlights down to try and recover as much of the white shirt as possible, but still trying to keep a bright glow on the surrounding area.  I guess it comes down to personal taste.  Sometimes, I might be willing to leave some over exposed areas to balance out with the rest of the picture.

I looked at your blog, and I can tell that you prefer to preserve the highlights, but having an overall darker exposure.  It may be technically correct, but again - just personal preference.  I would probably bump up the exposure, even if it meant blowing some highlights.  Your sound on the Aug. 27 Ottawa show is spectacular!  Those Tascam recorders rock!

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hifi
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Pete Berry, Sep 2, 2013

Pete Berry wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Strange, I find these images about as well exposed as possible under the terrible circus lighting conditions - certainly not overall overexposed. Well done, HiFi!

PB

Thanks - it was a bad lighting situation but I think it came out alright after some raw processing in ACR.  Appreciate the feedback!

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hifi
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Re: Very nice pix, thanks for posting
In reply to axlotl, Sep 2, 2013

axlotl wrote:

Bravo for making such good pix in difficult circumstances.

Thanks!

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hifi
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Martin.au, Sep 2, 2013

Mjankor wrote:

I think these are great. Indoor low light is always a challenge. I'm not seeing too many blown out spots - none that stand out IMO - so I think they're exposed well.

Thanks - it all worked out.

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ronfab1
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to hifi, Sep 2, 2013

hifi wrote:

ronfab1 wrote:

ronfab1 wrote:

OK since these photos have been posted for 5 hours now without a peep from anyone (amazingly), I will say they are very, very nice. The 800 ISO does the lighting great and very cleanly.

Big whoops! I was so taken with the images and wanted to post after seeing 5 hours had gone by with no others, that I clearly wasn't paying attention after the 1st photo's EXIF that not all were 800 ISO, with the rest at various levels of much higher ISO......which is even more impressive given how clean. The detail & color in the shadows and darker lit portions of the photos is just lovely. Props again!

Many thanks!

I should mention that on some of these I did a slight de-noising. I use the Topaz Labs plugin. It works very well, but also the GH3 sensor does good for high ISO - much better than the first generation m43 sensors.

OH.  OK.  I take it back now ..... the old noise reduction trick..... eh??    I just purchased a month or so ago the Topaz noise software.  Indeed it is very good with a lot of manual flexibility.

That said, I have a screaming fast Mac Pro to work with and had been using NIK's Dfine 2 for noise. The Topaz takes about 4 times as long ....... maybe.....what.....14 or so seconds on a 16 or 24mp frame, once you hit the perform button.  The Dfine 2 flies through it and I love its quick self analysis.  Maybe CUDA is involved with Dfine as I have a good card for that.

But more than that it kind of "seems" to me in my RAW processing that the auto evaluation and algorithms of the NIK are finding a better balance quickly with good noise reduction and leaving better detail for the same amount of NR???  Certainly an off the cuff comment as I have done no rigorous testing.  But am back to using the NIK NR most of the time.

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Pete Berry
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to ronfab1, Sep 2, 2013

ronfab1 wrote:

hifi wrote:

ronfab1 wrote:

ronfab1 wrote:

OK since these photos have been posted for 5 hours now without a peep from anyone (amazingly), I will say they are very, very nice. The 800 ISO does the lighting great and very cleanly.

Big whoops! I was so taken with the images and wanted to post after seeing 5 hours had gone by with no others, that I clearly wasn't paying attention after the 1st photo's EXIF that not all were 800 ISO, with the rest at various levels of much higher ISO......which is even more impressive given how clean. The detail & color in the shadows and darker lit portions of the photos is just lovely. Props again!

Many thanks!

I should mention that on some of these I did a slight de-noising. I use the Topaz Labs plugin. It works very well, but also the GH3 sensor does good for high ISO - much better than the first generation m43 sensors.

OH. OK. I take it back now ..... the old noise reduction trick..... eh?? I just purchased a month or so ago the Topaz noise software. Indeed it is very good with a lot of manual flexibility.

That said, I have a screaming fast Mac Pro to work with and had been using NIK's Dfine 2 for noise. The Topaz takes about 4 times as long ....... maybe.....what.....14 or so seconds on a 16 or 24mp frame, once you hit the perform button. The Dfine 2 flies through it and I love its quick self analysis. Maybe CUDA is involved with Dfine as I have a good card for that.

But more than that it kind of "seems" to me in my RAW processing that the auto evaluation and algorithms of the NIK are finding a better balance quickly with good noise reduction and leaving better detail for the same amount of NR??? Certainly an off the cuff comment as I have done no rigorous testing. But am back to using the NIK NR most of the time.

I've been very impressed with the de-noising module in Topaz Adjust-5, which seems clearly better than either ACR or PS-6 in preserving detail while controlling noise more effectively. Topaz De-Noise is on the shopping list, as I understand it enables masking control - a huge plus. And maybe their new masking plugin also - anybody tried it so far?

PB

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Kim Letkeman
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to Pete Berry, Sep 2, 2013

Pete Berry wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Pete Berry wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Strange, I find these images about as well exposed as possible under the terrible circus lighting conditions - certainly not overall overexposed. Well done, HiFi!

We're each more or less sensitive to exposure issues. I do not like burnt highlights. If you don't mind them then by all means shoot that way.

I would not sacrifice significant shadow detail in subjects to avoid blown random specular or spot highlights in stage lighting. You obviously choose otherwise.

Rather condescending of you to assume that I am merely complaining about specular highlights at light sources. No one is that dumb ... but you are definitely that arrogant.

But I do find your blog stage shots all significantly underexposed, except for the last, particularly the three "portraits" with plugged, noisy shadows. And none of your examples show the stage lighting challenges the OP faced except for overall intensity.

Are you using a calibrated monitor? Because I am, and it sounds like you have a terrifically incorrect white point. These images probably look fine to you, although you should check the areas of detail-free grey as those are detail free white on my monitors

You seem confused about white point, which governs monitor tint, but not the white saturation level you are referring to - a totally separate deal that is the luminance input point at which your monitor saturates to white.

I was referring to the combination of contrast, brightness and gamma settings that decide how pure white (255) is displayed on your monitor ... that part of the histogram is called the white point in Photoshop et al.

You are referring to the occasional reference to white point for a monitor that means "color temperature" as in the appearance of white. That you characterize me as confused is more that very appealing arrogance you are displaying.

If you are referencing the performer in the white shirt in images #1 and 2 and you are seeing the shirt as detail-free white (I see it as greyish with some variation and detail)

Exactly. It is white, as it is blown out by the lights. There is no detail in huge patches, and that is what determines that it is blown out, despite his software's manipulation of the actual white point in the image (reducing blown out areas to light grey does not hide the blow out, just so you know.)

then you have a serious problem with monitor reaching white saturation in the 230-40 range rather that at 255/255/255.

No, I can see the difference between 254 and 255 on Lagom. But 255 is a bright white, wheras you can see the differences, but they are dull on your monitor, apparently.

Measuring the shirt color numbers in PS6 with a point sample never gets out of the mid 230's - very light grey. In fact, it's hard to find truly blown highlights to any degree by measurement in any of the OP's images.

It is a trivial thing to dial the image's white point down in Lightroom, for example, by sliding the "whites" slider to the left. While this takes the edge off, the image still retains the detail-free blown out look, for anyone who is able to see such things and understand what they are looking at.

You might find the Lagom monitor white saturation test very revealing:

http://www.lagom.nl/lcd-test/white.php

As I mention above, I check my calibration on that site.

From you comments, I suspect you will see only white in most of the checkerboards.

I see all the details ... you see it all too, but it is grey. I see white to grey.

Which would make you very sensitive to highlights!

I am sensitive to BS and arrogance. Oh yeah, and detail free areas that are excessively white.

I see the grey all the way down to level 254, as it should be. My black sat. is not quite as good, separating down to a still pretty good level 3. And yes, my monitor is meticulously calibrated for printing with an excellent print/monitor match - including highlight and shadow detail - under my 4700K Solux viewing light...

Well, perhaps your initial conditions are incorrect then. Consider adjusting your brightness and contrast to get a better looking "white" ...

Perhaps he might have some tips for you?

Snotty comment acknowledged. You are very clever, at least according to you.

Clever enough to see the probable motivation for your dismissive post,

It was not dismissive at all. It was instructive. And it remains correct.

On the other hand, your arrogance shines through, but you are clearly describing your monitor's brightness and contrast issues and your own inability to understand how detail free grey only masks blow outs.

which was to bathe him in the brilliance of your blog when it's obvious to me, and probably others, that he has handled the complexities of stage lighting better than most of your much less demanding, but technically poorer examples show.

Yawn. Take your shots. I'm sure it makes you happy, so have at it.

Get your monitors calibrated as there is no point having this discussion if you are seeing what you say you are seeing ...

!!!

Calibration is not just about running the tools ... the initial conditions matter just as much. Think about it ... even try it.

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Kim Letkeman
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Re: GH3 low light indoor acrobatic show
In reply to hifi, Sep 2, 2013

hifi wrote:

Kim Letkeman wrote:

Strange to get flack for ignoring your post for 5 hours in the middle of a long weekend

Anyway, I find these to be rather over exposed. I shoot a lot of concerts stealthily and handling the extreme dynamic range of hot lights on some parts of the stage and no light on others is really tricky.

I have come up with a method that seems to work really well for any camera that has manual control -- even the tiniest of sensors ... as documented here:

http://kimletkeman.blogspot.ca/2010/09/important-tips-for-your-photography.html

Scroll down to the section marked "shooting concerts" ...

-- hide signature --

Thanks for the feedback. You are right - the hot stage lights do make for a tricky setup for getting a nice balance in the exposure right. I always shoot raw + jpg and the raw files really helped me here.

Yes, you can recover some highlights for real ... but in this case there are areas of grey without detail that show that the recovery is not quite complete. A slightly lower exposure will help that.

It was more of a processing challenge for these because of the dynamic range, ranging from the white shirt in the spotlight to the dark shadows in the same shot. In ACR, I brought the highlights down to try and recover as much of the white shirt as possible, but still trying to keep a bright glow on the surrounding area. I guess it comes down to personal taste.

Yes, but it also comes down to your comfort with the tools. For example, I drag highlights down quite far sometimes, but I always raise whites back up to get some contrast in the white areas. That pulls details from the short for example. But if there are no details to pull, then this does not work.

Further, I drag blacks to the right until I get no more indication of blocking, then adjust shadows to open them up. I usually do all this after adjusting contrast pretty far to the left.

The final step is to get an approach contrast curve for the image in the curves section. This is where you put contrast back where it should be and leave it out where it should not be.

Try that out and see if it works for you.

Sometimes, I might be willing to leave some over exposed areas to balance out with the rest of the picture.

There should not be any to leave. That was my point.

I looked at your blog, and I can tell that you prefer to preserve the highlights, but having an overall darker exposure. It may be technically correct, but again - just personal preference.

No ... detail free areas are never a preference. They are an error.

I would probably bump up the exposure, even if it meant blowing some highlights. Your sound on the Aug. 27 Ottawa show is spectacular! Those Tascam recorders rock!

I could open shadows more and let in noise ... I could blow out highlights, but I don't have to. Because I can use a curve to boost highlights without blowing them.

My point is that I don't have any lost highlights to worry about, so I can do as I wish.

If you actually do have all the data, then you blew them out unnecessarily. Try the processing technique I mention above. But if they really are detail free, then nothing will fix them.

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