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If you read the write up i completed about lighting I mentioned the use of the camera metering system and it’s problems there in. As I mentioned the light meter within the camera is known as an illumination light meter, meaning it measures the light being reflected from a subject.
The problem of using your metering on your camera is the fact that it meters the light being reflected from a surface. The reading you get will meter anything you point it at as 18% gray. If you point your camera at a white wall, your camera will render that white wall18% gray. if you point the camera at a black wall, your camera will render that black wall 18% gray. Where as if you used a incident light meter, which meters the light from the light source instead of the reflected light.

Now you properly use a built in camera light meter you must learn how to read that meter and know how to adjust for that.

Here we must know the zoning system:

Zone 0 - Pure black
Zone I - Black
Zone II - Black with detail andNO texture
Zone III - Black with detail and texture
Zone IV - Dark Gray
Zone V - Middle gray (18% gray)
Zone VI - Light gray
Zone VII - White with detail and texture
Zone VIII - White with detail and NO texture
Zone IX - White
ZoneX - Paperbase


Now we look at a simple problem to work out in your head.

If you point your camera at a white wall and get a meter reading through your camera. Your camera immediatly renders that walls 18% gray

remember 18% gray = Zone V

Now, in order for you to render that wall white with detail and texture, you want to move from Zone V to Zone VII

you must consider the different from one zone to another as 1stop of light.

so in order to move from Zone V to Zone VII you are moving 2 stops (or two zones).

so once you find that meter reading on your camera you will want to OVER EXPOSE the scene by 2 stops.

Now you have taken a photograph that is rendered properly...easy huh?

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i’ll leave you something to do on your own just so you can try it out

Now consider that you are photographing a black wall. When you point your camera at that wall your camera renders that wall 18% gray.

18% gray is what zone? _____

Now you want to render that wall black w/ detail and texture from 18% gray.

According to the zones you would be moving 2 zones.
So you would want to under expose the scene by how many stops? _______

There you go if you understood that then you now know how to properly use your built in light meter in your camera.

The answers are below.








































Answers:

Q. 18% gray is what zone?
A. Zone V (5)

Q. According to the zones you would be moving 2 zones.
So you would want to under expose the scene by how many stops?
A. 2 stops
 
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