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SunsetCorrectExposureUncorrected.jpg
31-Oct-2013 Tom Brown

SunsetCorrectExposureUncorrected.jpg

Nikon D800
1/320s f/9.0 at 50.0mm iso100 full exif

other sizes: small medium large original
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Lensrentals01-Nov-2013 14:21
This is the description for all 4 images in this series. But first, I must add that only a true geek would call an image "correct exposure corrected" -- roger

Since I had my D800 with me for the kids, I decided to take a few pretty pictures. Needless to say, I underexposed the sunset by five stops in Program Mode. Since I was taking RAW files as well as JPEGs, I decided to see if the image was salvageable.

Also, matrix metering aimed directly at the sun will already under-expose the scene by three stops - at least the photo of the sunset at correct exposure with the camera required a three stop equivalent boost in Light Room to boost the rest of the image. That means the majority of the image is boosted by about eight stops using all of the tricks in Light Room and Photoshop. At least all of the tricks I know since this is the first time I've done this.

Included in this series are four images:
First is the sunset metered at correct exposure by what the D800 matrix metering says.
Second is the above image with the dark areas boosted by about three stops to show how much is required to bring out a properly exposed image.
Third is the sunset metered five stops below correct exposure.
Fourth is the attempt to salvage what is basically a black image based on the JPEG output from the camera, shown as third.

This, I believe demonstrates the dynamic range of the Nikon D800 at ISO 100, implying that if one so choose, the could probably expose an image and make all of the highlights and shadows and the entire gamut of light a plain boring gray, which just gave me an idea for another entry.
While it won't win any contests, it appears one can underexpose most of an image by about eight stops and still print a decent 5x7 or 8x10, and you could probably get away with saying you "Instagram'ed" it.

For anyone whose actually curious about the photo - that's the new 49'ers stadium, Levi's Stadium, or as I call it, the Death Star (a large swath of steel blotting out the horizon), that is getting built off to the right.

FYI: I brought two speedlights as well with me because while the ISO and dynamic range is great, kids running for candy at night still requires a good blast of light since I'm not artsy (practiced?) enough to get those slow-panned blurry-except-for-the-face shots.
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