E-M10 Colors

Started Jun 2, 2014 | Discussions thread
Pikme Senior Member • Posts: 2,176
Re: E-M10 Colors

If you have auto gradation on, your raw files will be underexposed.  Auto gradation underexposes to protect highlights, then brings up shadows when making the jpgs.  If you shoot raw with auto gradation enabled, you just get the under exposure without the shadow lifting.

For 'normal' shooting, just use normal gradation, ESP metering and program mode - that works very well.

Then, pay attention to the subject, use histogram and blinkies in review and just start to LEARN when you need to make exposure adjustments - it isn't difficult and will soon become second nature.  If you keep in mind that the camera generally meters to a mid gray (not the color of gray, but the amount of light reflected by mid gray), then you will understand that it will 1) underexpose when faced with very white or bright scene, and 2) overexpose when faced with very dark or black scene - because the camera wants mid gray.  Try it - shoot a portrait in front of white wall and see how underexposed the image will be - the camera is metering white to gray.  Shoot a large black cow or dog and see how overexposed it will be - the camera is metering black to gray.

Now put that into practice - if you shoot a portrait where the camera is facing a very light or bright background, the image will be underexposed - so you need fill flash to brighten the subject or you need to add a stop or more overexposure.  Generally, you add exposure to bright scenes and decrease exposure for dark scenes --- but that always depends upon the SUBJECT as well as the background.   Or you can spot meter on the face or perhaps use center weighted metering plus some exposure compensation.  A good way to really learn this concept is to spend a day shooting only with spot metering.  Check what happens when you meter on green grass - that may surprise you.  Also, meter on a blue sky, that may also surprise you.  Meter on a cloud, etc.  You will learn a lot in two hours!

Finally, forget about protecting the highlights at all costs, it is much more important to expose properly for the subject, particularly faces. Even more important when using higher ISOs. Be careful of relying on the histogram/blinkies so much to avoid over exposure, as that can lead to underexposed images.  You can pull at least a stop of overexposed highlights back when developing the raw file, if you want.

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Roberto M.

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