Why Exposing to the Right (ETTR) is BAD!

Started Mar 30, 2013 | Discussions thread
Tan68 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,776
Re: Why Exposing to the Right (ETTR) is BAD!

Sovern wrote:

sometimes shutter speed is increased to then decrease the brightness of the background relative to the flash-lit subject.  if you want to maintain the same intensity on the subject, you may need to increase flash intensity on the subject.  no flash doesn't care about shutter, but if you noticeably reduce the contribution of ambient light... this can make flash setting more complicated, maybe.

exposing to (or toward) the right will increase the brightness of not-flash-lit elements.  of course.  i haven't read much about this technique; most people want to dim the background, it seems.  or just leave it alone.  manipulating things to have a slower shutter is dragging.  i figure you know this.

if you drag the shutter enough to noticeably increase the contribution of ambient, you may need to decrease flash on your subject.  as with arranging things to de-emphasize, it might require a little more work.

i believe more people try to de-emphasize the background by increasing the shutter.  the best reason i can think of to expose right (or dragging) is to capture different elements of your composition.  with your lady in the field, exposing right would help retain detail in the jacket.  however, i think most flash users would just use another flash on the jacket...

Still, exposing toward the right (maybe not strict ETTR) can still be a tool for flash users.  maybe the picture is being taken in the evening and you would like to artificially 'light' your background a bit.  you would do this by exposing.. toward the right.  it might be called dragging the shutter but you are exposing the background 'to the right' relative to what the meter recommends to lighten up your evening background.

of course, you can drag and still have a 'proper' metered exposure.

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