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Thread: Incident Metering Question

  1. #11

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    Re: Incident Metering Question

    Spot meter and base your exposure on a shadow value just like you do for 4x5. Especially since you already have a spot meter and know how to use it. Film size has no affect on metering technique.

    If you use an incident meter, the best approach is to learn to use it like a Zone System user would (or a BTZS user). Meter in the shadow and find a base exposure for how you want to render the shaded values. Then meter the lit areas and find your SBR and whatever development scheme you like. This takes a little reading, but there's plenty of information out there to be had.

    Personally, I'd rather have an averaging reflected meter or in-camera meter than an incident meter in the field any day...

    Best,

    Doremus

  2. #12

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    Re: Incident Metering Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Doremus Scudder View Post

    If you use an incident meter, the best approach is to learn to use it like a Zone System user would (or a BTZS user). Meter in the shadow and find a base exposure for how you want to render the shaded values. Then meter the lit areas and find your SBR and whatever development scheme you like.

    Doremus
    I have the Phil Davis BTZS and keep going back to it as it doesn't always sink in.
    From what I have read if I have it right is to meter in the open shade and then close down +1 stop.

    My interporation of this is because with the dome of the meter is going to give a reading based on (middle gray) which could be to light for the shadows. Do I have this right.

  3. #13

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    Re: Incident Metering Question

    I'm not that familiar with BTZS, but the principle, when you meter the shadow area, is to give less exposure that the meter reads since you're judging light falling on the shaded areas of the scene. I imagine that how much you deviate from the meter reading depends on where you want your shadow values and what the SBR is.

    So, basically, you're right. I'd consult the book though...

  4. #14
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Re: Incident Metering Question

    If the barn you've attached is your scene, and you want texture in the shadowed barn walls and sunny white clouds, you're up for a challenge, no matter the meter!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Since you're shooting a b/w film roll, the good news is your light is unchanging (except for the few moments when a cloud might pass overhead). This makes film roll development choices easier.

    Setting aside incident meters for a moment, one strategy might be to spot-meter the shadowed wall for zone 3 to ensure texture, take notes on where your clouds fall, do some bracketing as you consume the roll, then select the best development method to bring those highlights down. Maybe N-2 or N-3? Or compensation development? If you're working in a print darkroom, I think I also see some burning/dodging in your future.

    An alternative … speaking of passing clouds, maybe wait for a large one to pass overhead, bathing your scene in flatter light, then use your incident meter (if you insist on using one), and shoot your roll during these moments.

    Maybe even bring two film rolls for the two lighting conditions. ;^)

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