Fluorescent Lighting compensation

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Nicole, Oct 18, 2004.

  1. Nicole

    Nicole Member

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    Help! Having used a digital camera it has been easy to compensate for fluorescent lighting and now (since converting to film) I am stumped as to how to compensate for different lighting conditions. I will be shooting (at a childrens day care centre) with mixed natural and fluoro lighting without flash and with both a MF Hasselblad 501c/m and 35mm Nikon F90X with both colour and b&w film.
    How best do I compensate with film for these conditions?
    Thank you for your help! :smile:
    Kind regards,
    Nicole

    PS - Just goes to show how slack a digital photographer can become! Forgets all the basics! :sad:
     
  2. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    I normally used a FLD filter when shooting under florescent lights, it also depends on how your going to be using your flash as sometimes the flash can overcome the florescent lights, you need to do some testing in the conditions you will be shooting in.

    Dave Parker
    Ground Glass Specialties
    Satin Snow(TM) Ground Glass
     
  3. gr82bart

    gr82bart Subscriber

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    Hi Nicole,

    As Dave mentioned, get yourself an FLD filter and do some testing. Several manufacturers make them.

    Regards, Art.
     
  4. bmac

    bmac Member

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    FLD filter on the lens, and a Green Filter on your flash will do the trick as long as you don't have any natural light showing in the scene.
     
  5. Nicole

    Nicole Member

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    Thanks everyone. I won't be using flash at all on the littlies.
    I'll check out the FLD filter.
    Can this filter be used for only fluoro lighting or mixed fluoro & natural?
    Cheers
    Nicole
     
  6. davet

    davet Member

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    As Dave P and Art note, do some testing. There is no standard fluorescent light, so they all have a different spectrum, which typically have particularly strong "lines" (colors). Tungsten lamps and sunlight behave like "blackbodies" -- heat a blackbody and it will glow with a characteristic smooth spectrum that is easy to correct for by filtration. Fluorescent lights are not so easy, partly because different lights have different lines, so you'd need a filter for each type, and partly because the spectrum may shift somewhat with age. So 1) yes get a FLD, but test, and 2) if you have a fair amount of natural light in your mix you might be better off living without the filter -- again, test. If you're curious, you could try looking at different colors under different lights: if some colors look different under different lights, the FLD won't work the same with the different lights (the phenomenon is called metamerism)
     
  7. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I try to avoid flourescent lighting at all times... even when I'm not shooting!

    Anyway, I may be wrong here, but can't you compensate for the flourescent light in the darkroom with color neg film. I used to assign photographers when I worked at a magazine, and whenever we had a school or a hospital situation to shoot, where light was always questionable, we would often shoot color neg, and get the color corrections done in the darkroom. (It's been awhile since I worked there, I'm sure they do it on computer now... the bums.) I don't shoot a lot of color, and never print it myself, so maybe others could address how to go about it in the darkroom.
     
  8. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    Normally if it can be corrected with a filter taking the picture, it can also be corrected in the darkroom with a filter.

    Dave Parker
    Satin Snow(TM) Ground Glass
     
  9. gr82bart

    gr82bart Subscriber

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    Dave,

    You can, but it's always better to correct it in capture. I guess it's the same advice I give whenever I hear "I'll just fix it in Photoshop." :-O

    Regards, Art.
     
  10. Dave Parker

    Dave Parker Inactive

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    Art,

    I agree 100%, it always easier to start with a correct image capture, than to try and fix it later.

    Dave Parker
    Satin Snow(TM) Ground Glass
     
  11. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I'd agree, it's always better to get a good and color corrected negative, but if the source of the light is, say, a mix of flourescent, tungsten, natural light then will the FLD filter work? Or some other combination?

    As mentioned before, probably a few tests would be in order!
     
  12. Ed Sukach

    Ed Sukach Member

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    Fluorescent lighting can be corrected - to a point ... not completely.

    The spectra of ALL fluorescent lighting is "bumpy"; not really a smooth curve as would be the result of "black body radiation", and the dichroic correction in the enlarger will be smooth. Add to that the vagaries of the film emulsion in response to the bumpiness and the problem is even greater.

    The images can be improved. I've found that it takes a lot of effort - something that would place the printing well into the "custom" area. A FLD filter - I've used them - will HELP, but IMHO will not be a panacea. If I have no other choice but to photograph under fluorescent lighting, I would most certainly use the FLD.
     
  13. inthedark

    inthedark Member

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    I would say that flourescent lighting may be partially accounted for by the film you are using. If you are shooting under flourescent, use Kodak which naturally has a golden overtone and cuts the stark cyan of flourescents. Do not use Konica or Fuji as they are blue and green dominate respectively.
     
  14. Tom Duffy

    Tom Duffy Member

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    FLD or 30m compensating filter, but you'll loose film speed because of the filter factor.

    You might try using Fuji NPS (160) or NPH (400) with no filter. the Fuji film does an excellent job of compensating for fluorescent light with no filters.