What 'zone' for white shirt?

Discussion in 'Exposure Discussion' started by BetterSense, Jul 19, 2009.

how many stops would you add to a spotmeter'd white shirt?

  1. 1 stop/zone 6

    2 vote(s)
    5.6%
  2. 2 stops/zone 7

    20 vote(s)
    55.6%
  3. 3 stops/zone 8

    10 vote(s)
    27.8%
  4. other

    4 vote(s)
    11.1%
  1. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    I was at church today and I started wondering, suppose you spot-metered a person wearing a white dress shirt, or white t-shirt. How many stops would you add to the metered value to account for the shirt's being white rather than grey? 2? 3? 4?

    I'm thinking you would place the shirt at zone 7 so you would add 2 stops.
     
  2. david b

    david b Member

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    You would be correct.
     
  3. WGibsonPhotography

    WGibsonPhotography Member

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    I'm thinking zone 7, too :smile:
     
  4. mike c

    mike c Subscriber

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    Depends if the shirt is a important part of picture or if face is or something else.
     
  5. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    With B&W neg film, I'd process for the shirt to be on Zone VII or two stops over middle grey.

    With color slide film, I'd expose for the shirt to be about 1-1/3 or 1-1/2 stops over middle grey.
     
  6. Nikanon

    Nikanon Member

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    It depends, if in sunlight i would make the highest shades of white from the sun zone VIII, and let the lower values fall, in the shade id do about zone VII or VIII, of course i may make it zone III but this is all depending on my visualization, for me zones are never fixed
     
  7. Usagi

    Usagi Member

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    I second what NIKANON wrote. It all depends on visualisation. Perhaps mostly I would use VIII.
     
  8. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    White shirt in sunlight would be further seperated from the subject's skin tone than in shadow. And their skin would be of more import to me.
     
  9. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    so...bright sunlight or harsh stage lighting....zone 8, shade or flatter lighting maybe zone 7. Cool. When I finally get my spotmeter finished I'll be able try it out.
     
  10. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I don't "place" a white shirt, I let it "fall." So, depending on the low areas, it could "fall" on a number of zones under different conditions. (B&W Negative Film)
     
  11. naeroscatu

    naeroscatu Subscriber

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    I voted for zone VII as a general assesment but I always measure both my shadows and highlights and determine what is the contrast range so I know how to develop. Also you need to measure your subject (I doubt that would be a shirt) proably the face so you know where it will fall if you open up two stops to put the shirt on zone VII. It all depends on the existing light.
     
  12. memorris

    memorris Member

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    I agree with ic-racer. Meter and place the skin and let the shirt fall where it may. I would probably meter it and if it was too much, might consider doing a N-1 development.
     
  13. keithwms

    keithwms Member

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    This is (always) a matter of priorities in the scene, but indeed my starting point would be 7.
     
  14. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    of course that would be optimal, but consider a situation where metering the shirt itself would be more practical than metering anything else, because of the distance to the target, the poor angle of your spotmeter, the fact that they are moving etc. The shirt makes a good target.


    If you measured white skin, I supposed you'd only add one stop. The palm of my hand is always exactly 1 stop brighter than a grey card.
     
  15. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

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    I good placement for caucasian skin is zone vi, darker asian skin zone v, african skin zone iv. Has always worked for me.
     
  16. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    VII in the most simple of scenarios. I'm just as likely to place it elsewhere depending on the scene, what film I'm using, and how I intend to develop given the other information.

    At least you are putting your church time to good use!:D
     
  17. Nikanon

    Nikanon Member

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    Get a pentax digital spotmeter, or S.E.I. Exposure meter, again don't set
    yourself up for any zones, let your visualization and technical ability control your tones as well as development, as you visualize
     
  18. Martin Aislabie

    Martin Aislabie Subscriber

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    Yup! - me too

    That’s the trick/skill of zoning

    You can only place a couple of tones, the rest end up where ever they happen to fall.

    Knowing which tones to place and which tones to let fall - that’s the skilful bit - and of course not often discussed as people are usually to busy just applying the mechanism of the Zone System :surprised:

    Martin
     
  19. Mike1234

    Mike1234 Inactive

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    Meter for the Shadows (where detail is needed) and Develop for the Highlights...

    ... (where detail is needed)... unless shooting roll film for which no adjusted development is intended. In that case, meter for the shadows and let the highlights fall where they may... unless shooting chromes, for which you must be more carfeful with the highlights and find a happy balance.

    There's really no correct "all inclusive" answer so I didn't vote.