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  1. #11
    roteague's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    Both work just fine. I use both for color and BW negative and color transparency. But you have to realize that where I live and photograph, plus what I tend to photograph means I never really have extremes in lighting. On those rare times when I am faced with extremes I resort to my 5 degree spotmeter attachment.
    Good point Mark. snegron needs to determine what type of lighting he will encounter most of the time. In my case, I tend to shoot very early or late in the day, rarely in the middle of the day. This means that the light is much more variable, and in 30+ years of doing this, I find I still can't determine by sight what exposure to use.
    Robert M. Teague
    www.visionlandscapes.com
    www.apug.org/forums/portfolios.php?u=2235

    "A man who works with his hands is a laborer; a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist" -- Louis Nizer

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by roteague
    Good point Mark. snegron needs to determine what type of lighting he will encounter most of the time. In my case, I tend to shoot very early or late in the day, rarely in the middle of the day. This means that the light is much more variable, and in 30+ years of doing this, I find I still can't determine by sight what exposure to use.
    I often play a little game with myself where I guess the exposure by eye, then meter it to see if I am right. I'm pretty good at it these days, meaning I'm right or close enough for negative film more than half the time, but I'm wrong enough that it would be allot more expensive than a good spotmeter, not to mention blowing a great shot.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by JBrunner
    I often play a little game with myself where I guess the exposure by eye, then meter it to see if I am right.
    Dear Jason,

    Absolutely! Practice may not make perfect, but it sure as hell improves the odds.

    Cheers,

    R.

  4. #14
    OldBikerPete's Avatar
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    I would have to agree with Robert and others in that a spotmeter is best for landscapes. In Australia we often have harsh lighting having a dynamic range greater than the capability of the film to render. Shooting large format, one can not afford to waste frames on the guesstimate that the range is not too large, so one needs a meter which can read highlights and shadows separately so that one can measure the range of lighting in the scene as well as the exposure required. Averaging meters just give a fairly good estimate of the exposure required which will be good enough in relatively 'flat' lighting conditions - or where one absolutely MUST operate quickly.

  5. #15
    Helen B's Avatar
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    Well, you can also use incident measurements to establish the scene brightness range, as described by Minor White in the Zone System Manual, for example. It can be a quick and accurate method once you have a little experience with it. I'm not saying that it's better or worse than spot metering, it's just another method, with its own advantages and disadvantages.

    Best,
    Helen

  6. #16
    snegron's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the input, however, I am still a bit confused! Let's use an example:

    Let's say I am using Porta VC, ISO 160 film outside and I want to photograph a tree and the surrounding landscape. The tree will be on the left of my frame and the rest of the scene will be on the right. There is more light on the right side of the frame, the tree has more shadows. I want to have as much detail from the tree as well as the background. It is late afternoon/early evening and my "tree" reading indicates 125 sec at F5.6, but my background reading indicates 125 sec at F16. Now what? Do I average it all out to 125 at F8, maybe F11? Will a spot meter give me the readings of the tree and the background and then I have to do the math and come up with the average reading on my own?

    Let's say we have the same readings for the same scenario as above, only this time I am using slide film. Would this change my average meter reading?

    Also, does subject distance influence the reading in a spot meter? Will I still get 125 at 5.6 from the tree at 10 feet away vs. 1000 feet away?

  7. #17
    roteague's Avatar
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    Shooting negative film is different from shooting transparencies. With transparencies, if you burn out the highlights, you aren't going to get it back, you can get the shadows back much easier.

    If I was shooting this, with transparency film, I would take a spot meter reading from the hightlight on the right side, another from the shadow on the left side. If the range is greater than 2 or 3 stops I would probably choose to put a 1 or 2 stop split neutral densitity filter, with the dark area over the highlight. Keep in mind, it would depend how deep I would want my shadows to go. The detail you say you want, could only come by using a split neutral density filter.
    Robert M. Teague
    www.visionlandscapes.com
    www.apug.org/forums/portfolios.php?u=2235

    "A man who works with his hands is a laborer; a man who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman; a man who works with his hands and his brain and his heart is an artist" -- Louis Nizer

  8. #18
    JBrunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roteague
    Shooting negative film is different from shooting transparencies. With transparencies, if you burn out the highlights, you aren't going to get it back, you can get the shadows back much easier.

    If I was shooting this, with transparency film, I would take a spot meter reading from the hightlight on the right side, another from the shadow on the left side. If the range is greater than 2 or 3 stops I would probably choose to put a 1 or 2 stop split neutral densitity filter, with the dark area over the highlight. Keep in mind, it would depend how deep I would want my shadows to go. The detail you say you want, could only come by using a split neutral density filter.
    For black and white film, I would expose into the shadows, and burn down the bright part when I printed it because negative film will hold into highlights better than shadows, so a little overexposure can be dealt with.

  9. #19
    snegron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roteague
    Shooting negative film is different from shooting transparencies. With transparencies, if you burn out the highlights, you aren't going to get it back, you can get the shadows back much easier.

    If I was shooting this, with transparency film, I would take a spot meter reading from the hightlight on the right side, another from the shadow on the left side. If the range is greater than 2 or 3 stops I would probably choose to put a 1 or 2 stop split neutral densitity filter, with the dark area over the highlight. Keep in mind, it would depend how deep I would want my shadows to go. The detail you say you want, could only come by using a split neutral density filter.

    Would using an ND filter work for color film and transparency?

  10. #20
    naturephoto1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snegron
    Would using an ND filter work for color film and transparency?
    Yes, the Grad ND filters will work with color negative film as well, but they are a more important part of the filter arsenal for outdoor color transparency shooters. A 1 stop Grad ND filter would not probably be of that much value to color negative film. Additionally some including myself also use 3 stop Grad ND filters for transparencies. The 2 and 3 stop Grad ND filters would be of more value for color negatives.

    Rich
    Richard A. Nelridge
    http://www.nelridge.com

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