Sunny 16 rule ... not optimal at 16?

Started Jul 1, 2013 | Discussions thread
mike winslow
mike winslow Contributing Member • Posts: 561
Re: Sunny 16 rule ... not optimal at 16?

SQLGuy wrote:

adymitruk wrote:

onlooker wrote:

FuzzyQball wrote:

I remember my father telling us all to stay still, while he wandered around with his light meter, took notes, made calculations, and then minutes later took the shoot. All this was because the camera did not have a light meter built in. Also you could not see the results until much later, so you had to exercise care. Using the built in meter, with histogram if you need to, is the way to go. Know your camera and compensate when you need to.

Incident light meter allows you to shoot much faster than a built-in one.

This is due to not waiting for the camera to process the image? IE, manual mode with manual focus will be the fastest? How about turning other processing off? RAW only? What's the best option on an NEX-7?

It might be better phrased as, "Incident light meters allow you to get the correct exposure for many scenes, in the camera, faster."

For instance, a couple of years ago I took a picture of the matte black Carrera logo on gloss black Porsche. I let the camera meter the scene. It came out mid-grey throughout, and I had to take it down like 2EV in post to get a print that matched the actual scene. Luckily, in this case, there weren't really any highlights to lose, but, if I had used an incident light meter, or shot a grey card to set exposure, my shot would have been correctly exposed from the start, without the need for post processing.

So, a black on black that's going to be difficult for the camera, since it doesnt know what you want to do, and a gloss versus a matte.. The gloss will pick up reflections, esppecia;;y from point (hard) sources, and less from diffuse (soft) sources..  The in camera DDP is going to stretch the frame to some extent, but again, more in a gross fashion over the whole frame..  But the subject wasnt moving I assume. You have time to take shots with different exposures and see what the sensor is going to produce.. And with a static subject, you can composite multiple frames  similar to an in-camera HDR.  If that porche was moving, then it's a different set of rules.   Especially if you dont have control over the scene/subject. It's nice to not have to wait for the  film to be developed.. The live view histogram is nice.. Channel histogram is nice from a shot taken, and can/should be reviewed.  But in your black on black, you are looking for differences in a portion of the frame. one to consider best while you are there.  Maybe a light meter can tell you something that you cant see, or dont already know.. That's my intent to discern here. Skeptical that this is more of a practice or a style than necessity. If it is style or practice, then it's the information being learned to capture the right data, and there may be more than one way to do that.. I'm not being critical here - except when someone tells me that I cant xxx without a yyy..  
Then I dig into that, since life has taught me that there are few absolutes..

 mike winslow's gear list:mike winslow's gear list
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 Sony Alpha NEX-F3 Sony a6000
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