This is the brightness range the camera can capture before starting to lose detail in bright areas (like the sky) and dense, dark shadows. Generally, the larger the camera’s sensor, the better its dynamic range. RAW files capture a slightly wider dynamic range than JPEGs.
Exposure is a big, BIG subject. Even today, getting the exposure right is both an art and a skill, and however sophisticated the in-camera metering systems become, the photographer is still the only one who knows what the picture needs to look like.
Essentially, you control the exposure using shutter speed (the length of the exposure), the lens aperture (how much light it lets through) and the ISO setting (the sensor's sensitivity setting). Each of these is a subject in its own right.
Cameras offer a variety of metering systems to measure the light, and you can choose how to control the shutter speed and lens aperture – or let the camera set them both – using the camera's exposure modes.
So here's a selection of articles about everything related to exposure – how it works, the tools available, and why the camera won't always get it right.
The difference in brightness between the darkest and lightest parts of an image, though it can also be used to describe ‘midtone’ contrast, for example. Increasing contrast is a good way to make a picture more dramatic, though it can also lead to ‘clipped’ highlight and shadow detail. The scenes you photograph may have inherently […]
For photographers, ‘clipping’ is where the image histogram is cut off abruptly at one or both edges. It means that some image detail is completely lost in solid black shadows (shadow clipping) or completely white highlights (highlight clipping). Some shadow clipping can be acceptable, but highlight clipping usually looks bad. For videographers, it can also […]
This is where the lighting for the scene shines directly towards the camera and through or around the subject. It can make the exposure difficult to work out because the camera’s light meter needs to work out whether to set the exposure for the bright background or your subject, but it produces striking lighting effects. […]
This is where the camera measures the light levels in the scene using its in-built light meter, works out the exposure value and then sets a shutter speed and lens aperture to give the correct exposure. Practically all cameras have auto exposure systems and its only the more advanced models which offer manual exposure.