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Jun 07 2014

June is monochrome month

By Mark Beresford | Comments 6

I’ve been reading The Negative by Ansel Adams and it’s inspired me to use monochrome to learn more about exposure.

Here are some digital shots taken on a hike this morning. I used a spot meter with the zone technique to determine the exposure with my digital camera set to manual. Using this technique, I can get the exposure just about right on the first try, but it isn’t for all photos as it takes a little thought before pushing the button.

This petrol pump was at an old farm. I took a meter reading off the bottom of the pump and added two stops to make it zone VII, which is white that retains some detail.

Even though I turned my camera to monochrome, when I imported the photos into Lightroom, they came in as colour. It reminded me that using the RAW format in the camera means that what is shown on the camera display is not transferred to the image because the image is unadulterated data from the sensor, which always sees in colour. So, I had to convert the photos to black and white in Lightroom.

For this photo I took a reading off Kaori’s face and adjusted it to 1/3 stop above zone V. It was taken in a large open barn where the light was really soft and blocked from above, but with back and side light. I’m learning to use more interesting angles for portraits and especially to isolate the subject from a distracting background. Had I not got up high, the photo would have had picnic tables in it.

This one is just a tribute to Adams. There was side light on the trunk which made the texture stand out.

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