Beginner Sun!

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Chris
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#1
So yesterday was scorching and the big bright light was very big and bright. I was practicing with some portraiture and some street style pictures at my nephews youth clubs fete (with permission). So part indoor, part outdoor and trying to keep a wide aperture to give me some dof.
Outdoor, Shooting manual, iso 100, shutter around 1/2000 at f4. Total blow out. My display was showing more over exposure highlights than there was screen space....I ended up with f16 and it was still 50% over exposed area. So against my will to shoot manual I changed to aperture priority.
I ended up at f11 upwards, shot dependant and up to -1 EV and still had overexposed images.
Kit: Nikon D60, Nikon 18 to 55 F4-5.6 / Sigma 17 to 55 f 2.8
So what was I doing wrong or was it the wrong environment for the type of image I was after.
Not sure if this would be relevant but I wasn’t using the lens hood...
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.
P.s. obviously I can’t share the images because of the restrictions given within the authority to shoot...
 
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Clint
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#2
It does sound odd. Is the meter working correctly? Is the shutter working correctly? Was this happening with both lenses?
 
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Alan
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#4
If switching to f16 still lead to over exposure the reason seem to be the shutter speed.

Selecting aperture priority and seeing what shutter speed the camera selects should give a clue. I expect that your maximum shutter speed will be either 1/4000 or possibly 1/8000. If you want to use an aperture that's too wide for your max shutter speed you can use an ND filter to bring the shutter speed down.

All of my cameras have fast max shutter speeds now but when I was limited to 1/4000 I was on the odd occasion limited to f7.x. Mostly though I'd be limited to f2.8 or so without an ND filter.

PS.
When in aperture priority check the metering mode as that could well affect the amount of the shot that's blown.
 
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OP
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Chortes
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Chris
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#5
Thanks for your replies. To answer a few of the question or fill in the blanks...
My max shutter speed is currently 1/4000 but my new D7200 is on the way and that has 1/8000. Both lenses did give the same problem but the Nikon did appear to have slightly less of an issue.
Didn’t think of. The nd filter, which is annoying because I bought a set last year to freeze some waterfall shots and they’ve sat in my bag because I haven’t been to the waterfall yet!!
Cheers guys
 
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Kev
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#7
I assume you are still learning. If so, in situations where your settings are not working, it can help to put the camera on Auto and see what the results are like togeter with the settings the camera has used. You can then tweak these to obtain the effect you want.
In response to your actual query - what ISO settings were used for the blown images?
Just noticed the shot was at ISO 100 :)
 
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Chortes
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Chris
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#8
I assume you are still learning. If so, in situations where your settings are not working, it can help to put the camera on Auto and see what the results are like togeter with the settings the camera has used. You can then tweak these to obtain the effect you want.
In response to your actual query - what ISO settings were used for the blown images?
Just noticed the shot was at ISO 100 :)

Cheers Kev
 
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23,194
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Phil
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#10
Don't get dragged into believing that different metering modes or camera modes are in the least responsible for this - it's pure photography basics.

We have a very old rule known as 'Sunny 16' which is more like sunny 32 on a day like yesterday (rare in the UK.

The rule says that on a sunny day, 'a' correct exposure will be approximately ISO 100, 1/100 sec F16 - as I said we'll move this to F32 for yesterday (F16 would have been fine today).
So to get the aperture open, and maintain the same exposure value - we have to reduce the shutter speed - shot for shot (adjusted shutter speed to a better mathematical value).
1/125 - f32
1/250 - f22
1/500 -f16
1/1000 - f11
1/2000 - f8
1/4000 - f5.6
1/8000 - f4

If you want to shoot at 2.8 or wider you'll need ND filters / lower ISO.
But days like yesterday are very rare and Sunny 16 is rare worst case scenario most years - worth keeping a 3 stop ND though.

And 1/1000, f2.8 and ISO 100 is the same shot whether you've used P or M, Matrix or spot, a hand held meter or the chart out of the film box - don't let anyone tell you different.
 
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Chortes
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Chris
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#11
Don't get dragged into believing that different metering modes or camera modes are in the least responsible for this - it's pure photography basics.

We have a very old rule known as 'Sunny 16' which is more than sunny 32 on a day like yesterday (rare in the UK.

The rule says that on a sunny day, 'a' correct exposure will be approximately ISO 100, 1/100 sec F16 - as I said we'll move this to F32 for yesterday (F16 would have been fine today).
So to get the aperture open, and maintain the same exposure value - we have to reduce the shutter speed - shot for shot (adjusted shutter speed to a better mathematical value).
1/125 - f32
1/250 - f22
1/500 -f16
1/1000 - f11
1/2000 - f8
1/4000 - f5.6
1/8000 - f4

If you want to shoot at 2.8 or wider you'll need ND filters / lower ISO.
But days like yesterday are very rare and Sunny 16 is rare worst case scenario most years - worth keeping a 3 stop ND though.

And 1/1000, f2.8 and ISO 100 is the same shot whether you've used P or M, Matrix or spot, a hand held meter or the chart out of the film box - don't let anyone tell you different.

This is excellent Phil, thank you. I do have a set of ND filters but never thought to use them. It's safely locked away in the grey matter now though.
 
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1,225
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#12
The corect exposure for full sun outide in the UK is between EV14 and EV15 = 100 ISO at 500th second f5.6 (Slide film always) EV15 for B&W film due to it looks better slightly under exposed and over developed.

Digital cameras for some reason like EV 15 which is a stop higher than the correct exposure for film.

100 ISO 2000th sec at f4 (EV15) is the correct or slightly under exposed for a digital camera. If the photo is blown out something is wrong with the camera.

It does not matter which mode the camer is in.
 
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Phil
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#13
The corect exposure for full sun outide in the UK is between EV14 and EV15 = 100 ISO at 500th second f5.6 (Slide film always) EV15 for B&W film due to it looks better slightly under exposed and over developed.

Digital cameras for some reason like EV 15 which is a stop higher than the correct exposure for film.

100 ISO 2000th sec at f4 (EV15) is the correct or slightly under exposed for a digital camera. If the photo is blown out something is wrong with the camera.

It does not matter which mode the camer is in.
I’d argue that Saturday was a couple of stops brighter than the usual sunny day in Britain.
 
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#14
I’d argue that Saturday was a couple of stops brighter than the usual sunny day in Britain.
I saw what you said, but that's wrong. It's never EV17 never that is double the light required of EV16 which is top end for digital, slide film is EV15. The light source does not move closer to the earth and you being well up on falsh know about the inverse -square of light law.

I have take thousand and thousand of photos all over this country from Plymouth to Inverness in full sun with slide film 100 ISO is always 500th sec f5.6 for correct exposure. Digital about f6.3 as aposed to f5.6. I have even measured using a grey card. The suns intensity is constent on planet earth only the atmospheric conditions change to diffuse or reduce the light transmitted from the sun. And the earth turns round.

For some reason digital cameras are closer to EV16 they are a stop(just) up on film. I think it is to do with highlights blowing out on digital. After all ISO 100 is supposed to be a standard?

Just for clarification because it appears that a lot of people do not understand exposure at all.

If the correct exposure is 500th at f5.6 at 100 ISO (EV15) for a grey card that is also the correct exposure for a black card and a white card in the same light. The meter in your camera will tell you different but the meter is wrong. The meter will say EV17-EV19 for a white card but that will be under exposed and will produce a photo of a white card that is 18% grey.

EV 17 would always be underexposed for light from the sun no matter what, white car, silver foil anything, they all only reflect the light from the sun (incident light).

Full sun light in UK always EV15 colour film /slide EV15.5 /16 for B&W film or digital.
These EV figs are for correct exposure. Which may not be what you want.
 
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John
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#15
It was bright but from memory I was using:

1/125 f10 ISO 50 to 1/160 f4 ISO 50 - the latter with a 3 stop ND filter

Admittedly with flash.
 

StephenM

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Stephen
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#17
Possibly my meter was reading wrongly, but Saturday produced a higher reading than I'd ever had before. It was OK afterwards (based on experience) and before. N.B. As I was metering for film, I don't yet know if I underexposed by 2 stops due to a faulty meter.
 
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Alan
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#18
If you want to shoot at 2.8 or wider you'll need ND filters / lower ISO.
But days like yesterday are very rare and Sunny 16 is rare worst case scenario most years - worth keeping a 3 stop ND though.

And 1/1000, f2.8 and ISO 100 is the same shot whether you've used P or M, Matrix or spot, a hand held meter or the chart out of the film box - don't let anyone tell you different.
If you spot meter off a relatively dark thing (like a person...) with a relatively bright background (the sun) you're much more likely to blow your highlights than if you use evaluative... surely... although with evaluative although you may save the highlights the subject will be under exposed.
 
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Alan
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#19
Possibly my meter was reading wrongly, but Saturday produced a higher reading than I'd ever had before. It was OK afterwards (based on experience) and before. N.B. As I was metering for film, I don't yet know if I underexposed by 2 stops due to a faulty meter.
On 27th the light here was very harsh, surprisingly so but I'll not complain as who knows when we'll next get days like these.
 
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Phil
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#20
If you spot meter off a relatively dark thing (like a person...) with a relatively bright background (the sun) you're much more likely to blow your highlights than if you use evaluative... surely... although with evaluative although you may save the highlights the subject will be under exposed.
Are you suggesting that they'd give the same settings but a different result?
If not - re read what you quoted
 
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#21
If struggling! buy a small grey card and meter of that. Or buy a light meter with an invercone and take incident light readings.
 
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Alan
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#22
Are you suggesting that they'd give the same settings but a different result?
If not - re read what you quoted
You did mention metering modes being nothing to do with this didn't you? I didn't imagine that bit did I? Of course they wouldn't give the same settings but if that's the cause of this I don't know. I'm just suggesting something to check and watch for.

I'm just guessing here as I don't know the OP's settings and I haven't seen the results and unlikely though it may be one thing I'd do if getting large proportions of the frame blown in a semi auto mode (the op also used aperture priority) or even in manual with some of my cameras with auto ISO would be to check if I'd left it in spot metering. I only ever use spot or evaluative but it's a mistake I occasionally make and of course if you spot meter off something that's relatively dark like a person when shooting portraits or "street" with the light source behind them and then something that's relatively light like the same person but this time facing the sun you wont get the same settings and they wont be the same picture. That's sort of the point of the different metering modes. Metering modes may not be the issue here but it's something that will take the OP just a few seconds to check.

But of course we could ignore all that and checks that would take seconds to carry out and just post another (vaguely) snotty response eh Phil :D

When blowing large areas of the frame the cause should be pretty obvious but seeing the pictures and the settings would be nice.
 
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23,194
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Phil
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#23
You did mention metering modes being nothing to do with this didn't you?
Read it again, you’re a bright bloke. :)
My point was the ‘right settings’ are the right settings no matter what mode they’re achieved with.
Different people prefer different ways of working.
The only ‘right’ way is to understand what your meter is reading and override as necessary.

We could have a p***ing contest coming up with elaborate scenarios where our ‘chosen’ way wins, but as I said it’s irrelevant.

If we understand our meter, we can work however we choose.
 
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Chortes
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Chris
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#24
Ah, metering, yes, erm need to check what is was set too. SO much to remember, run before you can walk and all that
 
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Andrew
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#25
Is auto-iso enabled? If so the camera will compensate for the shutter speed and aperture settings by boosting the iso to reach your exposure setting. The pictures you took will have their actual iso setting on them.
 
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Chortes
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Chris
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#26
Is auto-iso enabled? If so the camera will compensate for the shutter speed and aperture settings by boosting the iso to reach your exposure setting. The pictures you took will have their actual iso setting on them.
When it’s in manual, no but when it’s in ap mode, I’m not sure, I would believe so, because I only have control of the aperture.
 
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Andrew
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#27
From memory the auto-iso will be superimposed over whatever mode you put it on. It is a bit complicated but worth experimenting with it on/off.
 

Asha

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Asha
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#28
Possibly my meter was reading wrongly, but Saturday produced a higher reading than I'd ever had before. It was OK afterwards (based on experience) and before. N.B. As I was metering for film, I don't yet know if I underexposed by 2 stops due to a faulty meter.
Well if your film shots are stuffed then so are mine as I was in the UK last saturday ( as you know) shooting LF film and I regularly had "sunny F/22 and on one occasion sunny F/32

Where I live in France, that isn't uncommon, in fact I've had to deal with even brighter scenes with high reflection ( snow, sea etc) , however I can understand how UK based togs may have believed that their meters were adrift.
 
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Phil
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#29
Well if your film shots are stuffed then so are mine as I was in the UK last saturday ( as you know) shooting LF film and I regularly had "sunny F/22 and on one occasion sunny F/32

Where I live in France, that isn't uncommon, in fact I've had to deal with even brighter scenes with high reflection ( snow, sea etc) , however I can understand how UK based togs may have believed that their meters were adrift.
That can't be true - because I was told that was impossible by some bloke who doesn't know the difference between light intensity and sensitivity ;)

OTOH - it probably is true, because he's wrong about most things he makes a lot of noise about.:p
 
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Asha

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Asha
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#30
I’d argue that Saturday was a couple of stops brighter than the usual sunny day in Britain.
I saw what you said, but that's wrong. It's never EV17 never
I metered (incident) an EV17 ( 125 asa, F/22, 1/250 ) in the UK ( south coast) on saturday on a couple of occasions, so I'm sorry to say that to state that it is never EV17 in the UK is incorrect!
I'm no "expert" when it comes to metering but I do know what I'm talking about when it comes to metering for b&w negative film…..When one shoots Large Format film, getting the exposure correct with one frame is important unless you have endless funds to be able to waste film!

This of course doesn't mean to say that I actually exposed my shot based on that intense light as the reading related to the highlights of the scene and I needed to ensure that some detail was kept in the shadows.

I appreciate that there are some differences when metering for film as opposed to digital but the actual strength of light that is shining on or being reflected off a given subject remains exactly the same regardless as to which medium is used.
 
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#31
I metered (incident) an EV17 ( 125 asa, F/22, 1/250 ) in the UK ( south coast) on saturday on a couple of occasions, so I'm sorry to say that to state that it is never EV17 in the UK is incorrect!
I'm no "expert" when it comes to metering but I do know what I'm talking about when it comes to metering for b&w negative film…..When one shoots Large Format film, getting the exposure correct with one frame is important unless you have endless funds to be able to waste film!

This of course doesn't mean to say that I actually exposed my shot based on that intense light as the reading related to the highlights of the scene and I needed to ensure that some detail was kept in the shadows.

I appreciate that there are some differences when metering for film as opposed to digital but the actual strength of light that is shining on or being reflected off a given subject remains exactly the same regardless as to which medium is used.
Thats 125 asa(ISO) not 100 and meter off a grey card. The sun does not move. That or get a new light meter.


Ansel Adams must be turning in his grave.
 
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droj
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#32
I appreciate that there are some differences when metering for film as opposed to digital but the actual strength of light that is shining on or being reflected off a given subject remains exactly the same regardless as to which medium is used.
Mostly correct, but you forgot that there were and are at least two types of film - negative and positive (reversal). And the exposure techniques are opposite.

Digital is its own animal, but it's more closely akin to colour reversal film, where exposure for mid-tones is a generality, but you must protect your highlights at all costs.

With neg film, you can be as anal as Ansel, or just wing it and meter off the shadows ...
 
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Asha

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Asha
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#33
but you forgot that there were and are at least two types of film
Sorry but you are incorrect! I did not forget that there are/ were at least two types of film!

If you were to read my post correctly, it clearly states that I referred to b&w negative film!
'm no "expert" when it comes to metering but I do know what I'm talking about when it comes to metering for b&w negative film
 

Asha

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Asha
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#34
Thats 125 asa(ISO) not 100
and you feel the need state that with b&w neg film a quarter of a stop is REALLY so important:thinking:

get a new light meter
My light meter( works just fine thank you as does my ability to be able to shoot correctly exposed shots with it or indeed, often without it ( simply through experience and good judgement of light levels!)
 
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droj
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#35
If you were to read my post correctly, it clearly states that I referred to b&w negative film!
Sorry, Asha, I'd seized on a sentence - you know how fast life is these days? But the general principles stated remain true ...
 
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