concert light metering and exposure

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kcf
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concert light metering and exposure

Postby kcf » Thu Dec 15, 2005 7:02 pm

Question for Jon Mided. I was able to incident meter a stage show last night and I was getting 5.6 for 6400, 6.3 for 3200 in the spotlight. Would you expose for that reading, yourself? That is, are concerts a situation where you expose for the highlights and not for the shadows? Or is the spotlight reading just a starting point and then you give it more exposure than that? I have noticed TTL readings give a little blowout.


Digitaltruth
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Postby Digitaltruth » Sat Dec 17, 2005 6:56 pm

This is a difficult question to answer because there are so many variables involved that you need to use some trial and error as well as relying on experience.

Personally, I agree that you should be more concerned about exposing the highlights correctly as this is where most of the usable information will be. Your incident reading should provide a reliable starting point, but the best information you could get would be to spot meter all of the different light values and determine the best overall average. If you could do this, then you would aim to place the highlights in zone 7 and use a compensating developer to develop for the shadows and stop the highlights from getting blown out.

I used to shoot a lot of live events myself, but I took a different approach to metering. My own method was not to meter at all, but to look at the various light levels and make a judgement about what was going to work based on a standardized development technique. If you find a developer that produces good results for you at a certain time, then you can adjust the exposure to produce similar results in the same soup.

I'd recommend shooting some Tri-X alongside Neopan 1600, TMax P3200 and Delta 3200. Treat all of these films as if they are 1600 ASA for metering and development purposes. Rodinal is a good choice, but you will probably get more consistent results with TMax Developer. If you approach the situation this way and treat it as a test shoot, then you will definitely get plenty of usable negatives and will be able to decide which materials you prefer to use and what type of exposure and development adjustments are required. TMax Developer will stop the highlights from being unnecessarily overdeveloped more easily than Rodinal, with which you run the risk of getting very thin negs at the higher dilutions.
--Jon Mided

Digitaltruth Photo
http://www.digitaltruth.com

tornredcarpet
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Re: concert light metering and exposure

Postby tornredcarpet » Sat Dec 24, 2005 6:49 am

kcf wrote:Question for Jon Mided. I was able to incident meter a stage show last night and I was getting 5.6 for 6400, 6.3 for 3200 in the spotlight. Would you expose for that reading, yourself? That is, are concerts a situation where you expose for the highlights and not for the shadows? Or is the spotlight reading just a starting point and then you give it more exposure than that? I have noticed TTL readings give a little blowout.
I'm not jon mided, but I usually bring a spot meter with me to a concert and meter off of a guy's face and set it as zone VI. That's my 2 cents.


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