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07-27-2016, 05:13 PM   #1
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Dapples dapples everywhere and they annoy me so.

So I went to a botanical garden today to take some photos and now I look at my results and what I have is all kinds of crazy dappling. No wonder the exposure metering was so well everywhere. And way I look at some of the pics now and I am not sure what to do with them or how to post process. There are spots that are over exposed spots that under exposed and barely anything in-between. Honestly, I may just toss them. All I know is dappling kinda sucks at least for me since I have no idea how to handle it........


Ok breathe, and rant over.


Last edited by W.j.christy; 07-27-2016 at 05:20 PM.
07-27-2016, 05:23 PM   #2
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If the "dappling" is a result of highlight reflection form leaf surfaces, a polarising filter may assist. Else abandon in-camera metering and meter off a grey card or similar. Some images may help.
07-27-2016, 05:30 PM   #3
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Don't throw them out yet. You might find useful ways of dealing with this kind of situation by learning about techniques such as ETTL (Expose To The Left) and HDR, or photo styles that intentionally over- or under-expose scene (high-key and low-key).

The dappling only sucks if you hold on to preconceptions that a good photo requires uniform and correct exposure in all areas.

Good luck!
07-27-2016, 05:39 PM   #4
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An example image would really help us to help you.

07-27-2016, 05:52 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies! I will upload some photos soon.
07-27-2016, 06:41 PM   #6
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Let's see the pics, but in some scenes, you may reduce the contrast a bit by raising the shadows and lowering the highlights.


I think portraits in dappled light are disasters, BTW - there may be individual exceptions.
07-27-2016, 06:55 PM   #7
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Luckily I was not doing portraits. I was mainly just out for a walk about. These are some examples. though I will say they looked a lot worse on the first monitor I used to review them as well as on the lcd the camera. these are strait OOC with no corrections and the color profile set to natural.
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07-27-2016, 07:55 PM   #8
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Terrific pix. They should be OK in post processing. Just drop down highlights should do it.

I think you were let down using spot metering mode, especially if the spot was on one of the shadowy areas.

.

07-27-2016, 08:46 PM   #9
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With film, I generally followed the rule: Expose for the shadows; print for the highlights. With digital, that doesnʻt work as there just isnʻt enough dynamic range to get detail out of blown out highlights.

So when Iʻm in the forest or jungle with bright sun coming through a dark canopy, I either:
a) Tripod, RAW and HDR with constant aperture and just vary the shutter speeds. Manual WB for consistent color rendering.
or
b) Take a risk and expose for the highlights. Yes the mid values and shadows will go very, very dark, but it can create some beautiful images as a sort of extreme chiaroscuro. Iʻd also probably go to grey scale in PP.
07-27-2016, 09:07 PM   #10
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Well, doesn't seem to be a lot wrong with the examples posted, WJ.


The top one has details in the bright and dark dapples and is only blown in the central patch and the little bit of sky. Almost no clipping at the dark end, perhaps some blue. And you'd get more out of the RAW than the JPG.


The other two are okay. You left your camera on Spot metering, but got away with it because those scenes are in flat shade. No clipping. I'd brighten and increase contrast in post to compensate, but that's just me. Everyone's aesthetics are different.
07-27-2016, 09:13 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bruce Clark Quote
Else abandon in-camera metering and meter off a grey card or similar.
A gray card is equivalent to an incident light measurement and is often a good option when lighting is difficult.

QuoteOriginally posted by johnhilvert Quote
I think you were let down using spot metering mode
Spot metering can be useful in this setting, but probably not in conjunction with any of the auto-exposure modes.* If you want use the spot metering, use it to pick a portion of the frame that you want to have a middle value (think 18% gray) and meter to that spot in manual mode. Using that exposure setting, frame as usual and take the photo. The shadows and highlights will "fall" to either side of what you picked. If you want to place exposure other than middle, adjust up or down from the spot reading. This process is essentially the same as using a hand-held meter, though with the advantage of taking the measurement through the lens.

If the dynamic range is too wide, use the camera's built-in HDR feature or do a set of bracketed exposures to be merged in post-processing.


Steve

* I cannot over-emphasize that spot metering is usually not a good choice for general shooting in any of the auto-exposure modes. Proper use is an advanced technique and requires some degree of user intervention.

Last edited by stevebrot; 07-27-2016 at 09:28 PM.
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