Quick Tip: Remember Exposure Values in Different Lighting Situations

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Back when I still had my photography training wheels and still mostly shot film, I developed this instinct to always change my aperture and shutter speed based on the environment. In New York, it’s not uncommon to walk from a building’s shadow to bright sunlight within a couple of feet. So instead of constantly relying on my metering then changing the settings, I would remember approximate values. This lead to me actually losing less opportunities to get the shot that I wanted instead of fumbling with my metering.

For a long time, I thought I was the only one who did it and I instilled that value into the rest of the site’s staff. But a video that I found on YouTube seems to reiterate exactly what I learned. A photographer wanted to use an old film camera that didn’t have a light meter. So what we had to do was learn the differences in the shadows and lighting then adapted his settings to the situation and location.

This is the simple concept behind the Sunny 16 rule, but it isn’t as exacting. Instead, you’ll get estimated values and you can then fix all the rest in post-production.

Check out the video after the jump.