View Full Version : color Vs tone

06-20-2008, 09:52 AM
Dear All,
I have now learned how to meter an object. And I have understood very well how the camera meter works when I use a gray card that means. But I have a problem of translated other colored object especially highely saturated black or deep red and what to do about it. To give an example on a very dark skinned subject I tend to stop down rather than leaving it as it is which could be fine. Or when I want to take a picture of a bright colored mug.
I hope it is clear in short I confuse color or subject with tone or the amount of light on it.

I am here to learn so...

06-20-2008, 10:46 AM

To handle one of your questions, dark skinned people are difficult to shoot correctly as far as exposure and lighting, often because the background is a white building or light sand etc. The meter sets the brightness according to the background rather than the person.

There are a few approaches to solving the problem.

1. Try to shoot a dark skinned person in the shade or against a dark
background. Even lighting is easier for the meter to deal with.

2. Use manual exposure and adjust until you see the detail you want in your
preview LCD screen on the back of your camera.

3. Zoom in tightly on the face, press AEL (automatic exposure lock) on the
camera or hold the shutter button partially down, zoom out and reframe
your photo and then shoot.

4. Use a natural light reflector. For example, have a bright building on the
left or ride side of your subject...but not behind.

5. Experiment with different ISOs and contrast in camera menus to get
maximum detail and accurate colour.

Hope these tips help and have fun experimenting. :)


06-20-2008, 12:54 PM
As to getting other colours correct, that also requires some careful observation and experimentation.

On the end of the camera a neutral density filter, polarizing filter, or enhancement filter can help. An enhanced polarizer is even better. Use a graduated neutral density filter when shooting toward a bright sky.

Software filters allow you to selectively adjust the colour in any number of ways too. They plug in to Photoshop, PaintShop Pro or most other photo editors that you may have.

Many cameras have a spot meter menu option. That is ideal to point toward the example mug you mentioned to get it perfectly exposed and exposure certainly affects colour. Reducing contrast in camera may also be necessary considering the strength of the African sun and its effect on photos. On some cameras you may be able to adjust the colour temperature until you get the colour you want and then set it.

With some cameras taking the photo in RAW format and then doing post editing for colour may also be necessary.


06-25-2008, 06:56 AM
Thanks all,I will try to experiement and share the result