D800 image post-processing advice

Started Oct 10, 2012 | Discussions thread
Ray Ritchie Veteran Member • Posts: 4,011
Re: D800 image post-processing advice

m_appeal wrote:

Thanks for the advice. Fill flash was not an option, because it would have ruined the casual moment. I kind of like the subject being darker than the background, but perhaps the brightness of the background is distracting.

I think the usual human factors observation is that your eye is drawn to the brightest thing in the scene, so you normally should expose your subject to be the brightest object (except, say, if the subject is a nearly black silhhouette). If you look at sites like strobist.com, you'll find that their advice about exposing for flash is to expose the background 1 1/2 stops or so below the subject. So by that rule of thumb, in my own processing, I probably should have knocked the brightness of the background down a bit, in addition to brightening the subject.

My own thought is that if you wanted the person to be in shadow, you should probably have positioned him more to the side and let the background come more into focus, by using a smaller aperture. But in that case, the background would become the subject, and the person would become more of an observer of the scene.

All advice is just for your consideration, of course - you're obviously free to do whatever pleases you personally.

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