There is a paper zone dial you can make in here: http://www.waybeyondmonochrome.com/W...mplatesEd2.pdf. This may help you with the calculations. Just place the camera's exposure combo on the dial and you can read off other equivalent combos. You will still need to adjust for the film speed, but it will be a simple adjustment based on moving a set number of stops up or down to match the S90.
Originally Posted by mingaun
Thanks Jerry, Mark for those very good advice.
Gebhardt thats a very good link. Thanks.
I went down the same road you have mingaun. I recently bought a spot meter 2 days ago; however in my defense, I am a 4x5 shooter and only an occassional RF shooter.
Before you think about buying a spot meter, use your S90. You can take it off matrix metering and put it on a spot meter.
Next, think about taking copius notes. Consider how your S90 meter responds in comparison to your negatives. (I used my DSLR with a 24mm lens). I just copied the exposure reading on the camera.
Example of my notes:
Sky +1 1/3
After some tries I began to realize the differences between the dynamic range of film and digital. Over time, I also realized that the DSLR is not always consistent because of the wide lens I'm using and the large spot metering camera. (Note: I am shooting 4x5 film that allows me to be a little more anal).
This is a good way to get started with a spot meter. If this satisfies you, keep doing it. For 35mm film, it ought to be more than enough. For me, I realized I might get up to 1 stop of a difference in inconsistencies. The final advantage of using a spot meter (i'm using a sekonic 758D), is that I can plot all of my exposure points on the scale of the meter. It makes it really easy to read and adjust exposure.
I would not have been able to learn all these lesons, and appreciate the spot meter I have now without going through this process.
I just picked up a spot meter recently, but It only gives me a 5 degree spot. Ive been shooting street a lot and I think its slowing me down. =[
Should I even be using one? I usually guesstimate the exposure and Its been working ok, esp when sunny outside.
Newt_on_Swings, spot metering is the good thing when you can study the scene, isolate key shadows and key highlights, take separate measures of those, make some reasoning regarding how to set the exposure, i.e. "placing" those points, and where they may fall on film, maybe take a measure of some other important part to see where it would fall given the calculated exposure, visualize the final picture, imagine how would you place the dynamic range of the negative on paper, figuring out if you want to compress tones, or expand contast etc. So it's the typical tool for tripod use in daylight work.
I suppose you don't want to go through all that reasoning for street photography. In that case I would suggest to strictly use the camera in manual mode and use an incident light meter and, if possible, B&W negative.
FIRST SCENARIO. You want to expose "right".
You measure the typical two scenarios (sunlight and shade) of the street. You see that it is, let's say, EV 14 for sunlight and EV 12 for shade. That's let's say 1/500@11 and 1/125@11 at 400 ISO.
You prefocus your camera using either hyperfocal distance or a closer interval. You walk. When the "likely subject" is in the sun, you use 1/500 and when you go in the shade or the likely subject is in the shade, you switch to 1/125, that's before the subject comes in front of you.
When you see a situation you want to take a picture of, you just frame and shoot. In street photography you don't want to focus, and you don't want to calculate exposure. You should be able to set time from 1/500 to 1/125 and vice versa without looking at the camera. It should become some sort of a habit.
I also suggest to never use autoexposure in street photography as you would typically not have the time to analyse whether exposure compensation should be applied.
SECOND SCENARIO: "READINESS IS ALL"
In the light situation shown above, you just use 1/125@11, hyperfocal distance, and just concentrate on photographic occasions that may arise. If it is in the shade, exposure will be right. If it is in the sun, exposure will be 2EV overexposed but a B&W negative will allow you that kind of overexposure without damage.
This operation will in any case more reliable than auto exposure, autofocus etc.
That's IMHO and anybody's mileage may vary :-)
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I think spot meters are best for when you want to highly manipulate a picture. If you just want a "plain-ol' good exposure," like most people, incident meters are more ideal, as they automatically place a middle tone as a middle tone.
However, even with an incident meter, spot meters are also good for simply measuring brightness range, so you know how much to alter your exposure and development to get the scene to fit onto the paper the way you want it to. If I have the time, I use both together.
"Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."
- Rob Tyner (1944 - 1991)
Lately Ive been shooting with an Olympus OMPC that I scored off craigslist with a 50mm 1.4 for $50 bucks. Its off the film metering makes it's aperture priority mode pretty accurate, and I do use B&W film which is fairly forgiving with over exposure. Im actually exposing the film I use at +1/3 stop and it works better (shooting iso 250 @ 200).
I usually set my aperture when walking around outside depending on bright sun or shade at f11 or f8, and I do prefocus using the scale on lenses. But most of the time I have it set at infinity, as my snap focusing speed is pretty fast (you only have to focus in 1 direction).
I will be shooting with a completely manual rangefinder soon once I get it CLA'ed and will try your tips on just changing the shutter speed. Ill probably carry the light meter more then to check my exposures. thanks!
Hey, that's handy! Thanks!
Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac
A few quick tried and proven words for use with a spotmeter:
On the proviso that you know your subject and lighting (and very importantly, the dynamic range of your chosen film), measure highlight, shadow, mid-tone and average all. Generally about 4-5 readings taking in all of that. Sorted.
BUT, this is only true for spot meters that can accumulate several readings e.g. the Olympus OM4, or hand-held spot meters. What is the case with the S90 (which I think is Nikon's F90X in southern hemisphere markets?).
The above is all I do now with transparency film from Velvia to Provia, in pinhole, including accounting for reciprocity. Negs of course will allow you a lot of latitude; more precise metering along ZS foundations is best left for sheet film where further individual controls can be introduced.
Last edited by Poisson Du Jour; 05-09-2011 at 02:11 AM. Click to view previous post history.
.::Gary Rowan Higgins
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