I'm making headway with photography in general and specifically with my D100. I still have a long way to go thought. Anyway, I'm starting to use the "M" to set my exposure and I have a question.
Most of them time, I'm in a situation where my subject lighting is different than the surounding areas. What I just figured out is this. What if I change to "Spot" metering and then adjusting A and S so that the graph is at "0" in my view. Once that is set, I can simply point and shoot at will, almost. Obviously, as I redirect the camera my metering graph will change + or -, but I do not care because I alreayd set my exposure based on my subject. I guess I'm just looking for some feedback on this technique. I need to experiment in the field but also wanted to hear from the community. Any other thoughts.
#1. "RE: Metering Question" | In response to Reply # 0BartY Registered since 03rd Aug 2002Fri 23-Jan-04 04:08 PM
If you were metering off of an object of average luminosity, then you're basically applying the zone system without realizing it. It is natural for the meter to indicate some overexposure when moving to an area containing highlights, and underexposure when you move to an area containing shadows. Because the spot meter measures such a small area of the frame, it allows you to ensure that the shadows contain the level of detail you require without blowing out the highlights. As you discovered, you can more or less set your exposure once and leave it as long as what you shoot next is lit the same way as what you metered origionally. Otherwise, small adjustments may be necessary.
The great thing about this method is you can expose the subject in such a way that it looks the way YOU want it. Obviously it is better suited when shooting scenes that allow you to slow down and contemplate exposure; action shots are still generally better left to matrix metering and an auto-exposure mode because of the rapidly changing conditions.
If you've never read "The Negative" by Ansel Adams, I'd highly reccomend it if you'd like to learn more about the Zone System.