Old 02-01-2013, 01:29 AM   #1
nsmith8853
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Default Suggestions on Snow Shots

When shooting trains in the snow with some cloud cover, my trains come out dark. Should I be shooting a bit overexposed to compensate for the excessive light from the snow? If so, should i adjust my shutter speed, f-stop, or...etc???

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Old 02-01-2013, 03:11 AM   #2
jdirelan87
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Even relatively high end cameras easily get confused when snow dominates the viewfinder. There is just too much light bouncing around for the sensor to handle, even during cloudy days. Make an effort to note how many steps you're correcting during post processing and adjust according while shooting. Its different for every camera, mine normally underexposes by two steps. As for what adjustments to make for the compensation... it doesn't really matter, just make the same changes you normally would when adjusting for exposer.

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Old 02-01-2013, 03:37 AM   #3
JimThias
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Overexpose by two steps or so...or until the histogram is blinking like crazy.

Also, a good book to pick up to help you understand manual shooting is called "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson. http://www.amazon.com/Understanding-.../dp/0817463003

Last edited by JimThias; 02-01-2013 at 03:39 AM.
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:19 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, I really appreciate the advice.
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdirelan87 View Post
Even relatively high end cameras easily get confused when snow dominates the viewfinder. There is just too much light bouncing around for the sensor to handle, even during cloudy days.
The implications are the same regardless, but I don't think this description of the cause is right. There is not confusion in the camera, at least not by "bouncing" light (and the only thing that comes to mind as analogous to bouncing light, glare, is not present when cloudy). Rather, the camera is designed to achieve a middle-road in exposure in terms of tonality. It is looking to make things grey. The camera does not know that the subject matter is white and so exposes it for gray, which for our purposes means underexposed. The camera is not smart enough to detect snow.
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:38 PM   #6
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Janusz is right. What happens is that the camera's meter thinks the scene is much brighter than it really is.

I usually run aperture-priority and +0.7 or +1.0 EV in snow conditions.
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
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I usually run aperture-priority and +0.7 or +1.0 EV in snow conditions.
Or you could just adjust the shutter speed (or ISO) to expose 1-2 stops over in manual mode.
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