Interesting Reid ...

Started Sep 9, 2011 | Discussions thread
Prognathous Veteran Member • Posts: 9,010
You're still missing the point

But before I reiterate the point, here's the histogram of this shot using a different application:

...and lets play your game and show a mode that's totally irrelevant:

hmm... this shot must have been underexposed! right?

In addition to the bottom line in my previous shot (which you conveniently ignored), here are two more truths for you:

1. Exposing to the right only works if the brightness of the final image is later corrected in post-processing. Once corrected, its histogram can look like the one for Sean Reid picture and there's no way for you or anyone else to tell whether it was originally exposed to the right or not.

2. It's perfectly legitimate to expose the shot so that it has the correct brightness straight out of the camera. This is the preferred approach for those who don't intend to pp the picture or prefer to get exposure "right" (as in "correct", not as in "exposed to the right") straight out of the camera. The vast majority of people share this approach, including many pros (especially those shooting events, news and sports).

BTW, many serious photographers swear by incident light meters, as these devices are very useful for getting correct exposure that reflects the actual tonality of the scene without pp. This is the furthest thing from the concept of exposing to the right.

Pangloss wrote:

My analysis: your image was exposed to the right i.e. it was correctly exposed. Visually, we can see the detail of the black cat's hair. No data is lost.

The fact that there are details in the cat fur doesn't tell you anything about how I exposed this shot (which is pp'ed as are most of my shots). All you know is that the cat was within the dynamic range of the sensor. Nothing more.

My analysis: his image is exposed way to the left (badly underexposed).Visually, in his picture, there are dark patches of indistinguishable shadow matter. This data is lost and unrecoverable.

You don't know that either. BTW, what you describe is not exposing to the left, but that's a different matter. There's no way for you to tell if this shot was exposed to the left, to the right or in between, as it may have been pp'ed to reflect the tonality range that the photographer saw in the actual scene. Alternatively, it may have simply been exposed to reflect this tonality straight from the camera (without pp), and this is fine too. All of these options are possible, and since you don't know what pp was applied (or not), you can't really comment on exposure. What you can comment on is whether you believe that the final posted image reflects the tonality that the photographer saw, or whether it's just a mistake by a technically incapable person. I don't think Sean Reid falls into this category, so I tend to believe that this image does represent what he saw or what he wanted to convey.


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