Imagine this scenario: You are looking out over absolutely stunning rays of light in Redwood Forest National Park. You are about to press the shutter release in hopes of immortalizing all the grandeur of this location at this very moment. To make matters more complicated, there is a slight breeze that is moving the vegetation. Ideally, you would like to use a high enough shutter speed to get everything sharp.
How do you know if you have the correct exposure with a high enough shutter speed so that when you get back home, you’ll have all the data you need to recreate the scene? Have you faced this situation before?
We use a simple 4-step workflow when using the Histogram on the back of the camera. This workflow allows us to select the three elements (ISO, aperture, and shutter speed) of the exposure triangle to determine the exact exposure. Not only does this workflow allows us to pick the correct exposure, but it also allows us to pick the exact shutter speed, aperture, and ISO values that are needed to produce the desired effects.
For this particular shot, I used F8 @ ISO 400 and bracketed the shutter speed between 1/40s – 1/10s to capture enough details in the highlights and shadows. How did I know that bracketing was needed? Because the histogram told that there was no way I could capture this image using a single exposure (image below).
Using histogram, I was able to determine just how much bracketing was needed and this allowed me to optimize noise levels and lens performance while still keeping the shutter speed high enough to produce a sharp image.
Moments like this one motivated us to create our newest video course called Histograms Exposed. Furthermore, we have partnered with a fantastic professional photographer named Josh Cripps to bring you Adobe Camera Raw tutorials. In this tutorial, Josh demonstrates his simple Camera Raw Workflow as he masterfully processes some of the images in the case study section of our Histogram Exposed course.
Histograms Exposed and Adobe Camera Raw work hand-in-hand to guide you from shooting in the field to creating a finished image. We will start on location and end with a beautiful product, demonstrating an effective workflow as we go. No more guesswork or hoping for the best. No more poorly-exposed or poorly-processed photos. Just the strength of your histogram working with the raw power of Adobe Camera Raw to bring you high quality, professionally-processed images every time.