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Author Topic: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery  (Read 95354 times)

LetTheRightLensIn

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #60 on: April 03, 2013, 09:33:24 PM »
Comparing the door to the wall behind it, yeah, I would in casual discussion say the wall is light gray and the door is dark gray. We can get pedantic and debate how far below photographic middle gray these doors are and if that still allows them to be classified as lighter shadows or darker midtones. But I fail to see how that advances the discussion.

It makes quite a difference to the discussion. There's a huge difference between pushing near-blacks to deep shadows with detail, and pushing near-blacks to midtones. Going from Zone II to Zone III or Zone IV is no big deal. Going from Zone II to Zone VI, which is basically what you've done, is quite extreme.

It is utterly pedantic.

It's only extreme when the camera can't handle it!!





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But if it was for any form of reportage, I'd say you overdid the HDR by making the whole scene perfectly evenly lit.

Even if the HDR looked closer to what the eye saw?

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From your other descriptions, the attached image is closer to how I think the scene would have appeared to somebody standing at the camera position. I'm pretty sure that National Geographic, for example, would reject your rendition in favor of one closer to the one below.

nonsense


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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #60 on: April 03, 2013, 09:33:24 PM »

jrista

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #61 on: April 03, 2013, 10:47:01 PM »
Yes, but don’t you think it would seem a little unprofessional to deliver a disc full of images to a client and then single out one image and tell them “Oh, by the way, image #XXXX might look a little crappy on your monitior but it will be fine as long as you don’t print it bigger than 8x10….”?

Well, now you're talking not about delivering prints, but about delivering images the client expects to pixel peep. In effect, your client is asking you for 38" x 57" prints suitable for viewing at a distance of 12". That's something entirely different, and not generally something one expects to deliver from 135 format, regardless of the brand -- even if you can pull it off.

Honestly, I don't have a lot of sympathy. If your client is expecting shove-your-nose-in-it sharp and clean large gallery prints from every shot, you really should be shooting medium format -- and charging enough to pay for the gear and processing and time and what-not. That would also solve your dynamic range "problems," too.

More likely, you're not properly managing your clients's expectations properly and overselling what is reasonable to offer.

If you're successful at making Mercedes-quality products with Yugo-quality tooling, all the more power to you. But that's generally not how it's done, except perhaps when you're in the starving startup phase or if you're just an enthusiastic amateur. It's generally an unsustainable business model.

(I'll note: I'm right now in that world, myself. I'm doing some very demanding fine art reproduction, and with very good results. I'm pretty sure I'm getting better results than anybody else doing giclee work in the area, and that includes a major metropolitan area art museum. But the time and money it takes me to do what I do and with how long it's taken me to get where I am...well, if I didn't have a day job to pay for the bills along with this hobby, I'd long since have bankrupted myself.)

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The scene does appear evenly lit to the human eye when you are standing there. That’s because of how our brain interprets things for us when we are looking at something with wide variations in dynamic range. Having stood in that very spot, I will tell you that with 100% certainty no one standing there would see the scene in the way you have presented it (which incidentally is not that far off from the lower of the bracketed exposures).

I do believe that your certainty is rather misplaced.

Every trained visual artist I've met would have seen the scene as it was, with comparatively deep shadows on the catwalk and the tables brightly lit by the skylight. And that's because they've learned to see the world around them as it is.

It's the same skill that permits them to paint (or draw, whatever), for example, a 3/4 portrait without painting both ears. Had an inmate been standing in one of the doorways in 3/4 profile to the camera, you would have "seen" both ears in exactly the same way that you "saw" her well-lit.

An artist can, of course, choose how to render the scene. He might paint the inmate exactly as he saw her, with only one ear visible. He might paint the inmate looking straight out of the frame, with both ears visible. He might emulate Picasso and paint a 3/4 profile but with both ears showing. Similarly, he might render the light as it was with the tables much brighter than the catwalk, or he might render it as you "saw" it, as if you allowed your eyes time to adapt from the one illumination to the other.

It's also my experience that photographers tend to see the light the same way, and draw from their own bags of tricks for how to deal with it. Fix the light? Blend exposures? Filters? Digital fill? Regardless, they see that the one area is light and the other dark, even if they can squint at both and make out all the details and imagine what the final blended and equally-lit scene would look like.

And that's probably the biggest thing I'm missing from your prison shot: a sense that the lighting isn't equal throughout the whole room. I'd suggest that it's reasonable to lift the shadows to make it easier to see the detail in them -- and, similarly, to tame the highlights. But what you've done is completely equalized the two, giving the sense that the whole room is as well-lit as an art gallery. Some difference in relative illumination would have been nice, but I'm not getting any.

Cheers,

b&

Your fatal flaw, here, Trumpet is that you assume you actually know what the scene looked like to the human eye. Art_d was actually THERE. HE knows. You can only make assumptions, speculate, and hypothesize...but that is no replacement for actually being there. I think Art's rendition of the scene is better...it looks more accurate to me, and I am an artist. I think there is plenty of relative difference in "illumination" throughout the scene. Keep in mind, this is a rather bland, flat room with higher key gray walls. That is a bonanza for diffuse indirect lighting. The bright skylight is pumping in a ton of bright sunlight, which is going to diffuse off the floor and walls and bounce around the room GREATLY affecting the shadows. I wouldn't expect there to be much in the way of deep, dark shadows in such a room...not to the human eye anyway.

I spend a lot of time pondering the eye...its an amazing device, and I frequently am amazed at how much brighter shadows look to my eye than to my camera. There are often times when I'm watching a bird, and the scene looks well lit to me. When I take a photo, I'm sometimes surprised at near-black shadows, which looked nothing of the sort to my eyes. There is no apples to apples comparison of how the eye sees and how a camera sees. Dynamic range with an electronic sensor is RAW "input". What we as humans see is the result of the raw input to the eye being processed by our brains. Ironically, the brain is a high speed, continuous, adapting HDR processor that works off of a circular buffer of around 500 "frames" to produce the amazing DR we can see. Any single one of those frames, if we could see them in isolation, would probably be inferior to anything a modern DSLR could produce, D800 or 5D III. Having more DR means our post processing engines, which might be something like Lightroom or might be DPP + PS6 or something else, have more to work with to reproduce a more "human vision like" result. If replicating what the eye sees in high dynamic range scenes is your goal, then the D800 is a better tool.

If I was standing in that room, I wouldn't expect the shadowed part of the doors to be deeper in shadow. I think they would look very much like Art_d rendered them. The only real difference, I think, would be the skylight. I think my eyes would be more capable of seeing the skylight for what it was, rather than as a blotch of overexposed whites. However, again...it's all just speculation. The only one of us who knows for sure is Art_d, as he is the only one who was actually there and can actually remember what it looked like to the human eye.

I think you are applying an archaic system for evaluating exposure, the Zone system, in an environment when our ability to meter and expose is vastly superior. I have long thought that many of Ansel Adams photos had shadows that were far too deep, contrast that was too stark, which looked unrealistic, more surrealistic, and could have stood to be lightened to bring out some of the detail that most certainly existed there. Ansel's approach to photography, while amazing for his time given the limitations they HAD to deal with back then, no longer really applies these days. We are not working in an analog medium that effectively fixes in an exposure, and we do not have the same kinds of limitations when it came to adjusting and tuning exposure while developing the film that they did. Today, I think exposure has to be treated differently. We need to expose a scene such that we capture as much useful, workable INFORMATION as possible...rather than try to expose the scene correctly without the expectation that we will work it in post. With digital RAW, it is less about getting it right strait out of camera, as it is capturing enough information to make it right in the end. Ultimately, its all about the histogram today, and less about zones. Push the right-hand end of the histogram as far into the right-most end of the histogram display as you can without clipping highlights, then pull back ever so slightly to preserve highlight fidelity...and THAT is a proper exposure with a digital sensor. You are then free to push and pull that exposure as much as you need and as much as you can to replicate the original scene as it appeared to human eyes.

In that respect, any high end DSLR today is an amazing tool that offers astounding dynamic range, while also offering incredible resolution, excellent color reproduction, and amazing flexibility. When it comes to low ISO DR and low ISO shadow noise, the D800 is a better tool than the 5D III. The thing people sometimes forget is that does not make the 5D III a "bad" or "insufficient" tool. Less capable, which sometimes puts an additional burden on the photographer (reducing burden is what technological progress is all about, right), but still paramount to what photographers were working with only a decade ago, and incomparably better compared to what Ansel Adams and Fred Archer had to work with in the 40s.

As for the ability to print...I think you are gravely underestimating the capabilities of a high resolution digital sensor these days. The D800 could easily be blown up to 40x60 and still look fantastic! No one views anything that large from a foot! That's just more wild speculation and unfounded assumption. You *can* draw viewers in closer with key subject loci, but for the most part, people stand back and view the whole image. You aren't going to have problems with nose grease from people "pixel peeping" a 40x60 print.

As for dynamic range problems in print...well, MFD isn't going to help you much there. I've seen videos where current-generation MFD cameras are pushed and pulled in comparison to a D800. The D800 stomps all over them. Not only that, when you push around the shadows from something like a Hasselblad, you have similar NASTY noise, with FPN and banding, to what you get out of a Canon camera! The once-legendary DR of MFD has also been surpassed by the D800. The only area where they seem to do better is in the color fidelity of the highlights. The D800 starts to break down and you get posterization and a loss of fidelity when recovering extreme near-blown highlights. MFD highlights recover cleanly, without any error, or with so little that you can't see it. However, you can just under-expose a bit with the D800, and pull up those shadows, and you wouldn't have the problem in the first place. Even though color fidelity in the D800 shadows won't be great, it is still a hell of a lot better than either a Canon 5D III or any MFD.

TrumpetPower!

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #62 on: April 03, 2013, 11:18:01 PM »
Your fatal flaw, here, Trumpet is that you assume you actually know what the scene looked like to the human eye. Art_d was actually THERE. HE knows.

Yes. And my assumptions are based solely off of his description. Specifically:

Quote from: art_d
The common area on the first floor is illuminated by a skylight. The dark gray cell doors on the second level have no lighting on them at all. Exposing correctly for the highlights in this scene severly underexposes the doors. There is no way to set up any additional lighting. Lifting the shadows on the doors in post leads to very obvious pattern noise on the doors. The eventual solution is blending multiple exposures. If this had been shot with an Exmor sensor simply lifting the shadows in a single exposure would not have been a problem.

Yet, in Art's rendition, the catwalk appears to have the exact same amount of illumination as the rest of the room.

Quote from: jrista
I think you are applying an archaic system for evaluating exposure, the Zone system, in an environment when our ability to meter and expose is vastly superior.

You apparently completely missed the whole point of the Zone System, which has very little to do with the camera and everything to do with the print.

And today's printing technology, though quite amazing, has basically the same dynamic range as what Adams had to work with, give or take. And I do mean that -- some of the papers I print on have significantly less dynamic range than Adams had available to him, and some a bit more.

The Zone System is all about capturing your image without regard to the capture technology except to maximize the quality in the print. And, yes, if it was your intention to place the frontmost door in Zone IV and the back wall in Zone VII as Art did, then you need an exposure for those parts of the scene that maximizes their image quality. With a modern DSLR -- any modern DSLR -- you're not going to get an optimal exposure for that bright a rendition of that part of the scene that doesn't also completely blow out the near-specular highlights of the metal tables. Similarly, any exposure that will be optimal for those tables will result in a very dark rendition for the catwalk. Even in the film days, if you tried to lift that exposure by that much, the grain would be every bit as distracting as digital noise.

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I have long thought that many of Ansel Adams photos had shadows that were far too deep, contrast that was too stark, which looked unrealistic, more surrealistic, and could have stood to be lightened to bring out some of the detail that most certainly existed there.

Much of his work was done midday. You're used to Golden Hour landscape photography. It's been many years since I've been to Yosemite, but his work certainly to me captures the mood of that valley at midday. Yes, he worked his negatives over with a rubber hose when making prints, but he captured the drama I remember.

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As for the ability to print...I think you are gravely underestimating the capabilities of a high resolution digital sensor these days. The D800 could easily be blown up to 40x60 and still look fantastic!

Of course it could. Duh. Many billboards and tractor-trailer wraps have been shot with less-than-ten megapickle APS-C cameras, and those images look fantastic, too.

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No one views anything that large from a foot!

But there's the rub. When Art delivers his files to his clients and they pixel peep them, that's exactly what they're doing. They're viewing a roughly 12" x 18" crop (give or take) of a five-foot-by-eight-foot print from a foot away. Insane.

Cheers,

b&

jrista

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #63 on: April 03, 2013, 11:46:00 PM »
Your fatal flaw, here, Trumpet is that you assume you actually know what the scene looked like to the human eye. Art_d was actually THERE. HE knows.

Yes. And my assumptions are based solely off of his description. Specifically:

Quote from: art_d
The common area on the first floor is illuminated by a skylight. The dark gray cell doors on the second level have no lighting on them at all. Exposing correctly for the highlights in this scene severly underexposes the doors. There is no way to set up any additional lighting. Lifting the shadows on the doors in post leads to very obvious pattern noise on the doors. The eventual solution is blending multiple exposures. If this had been shot with an Exmor sensor simply lifting the shadows in a single exposure would not have been a problem.

Yet, in Art's rendition, the catwalk appears to have the exact same amount of illumination as the rest of the room.

He meant no direct lighting. It is not possible to have no lighting of any kind whatsoever on those doors with a room like that. As I said, you are going to have a hell of a lot of diffuse bounce, which is going to GREATLY increase the overall ambient illumination of the room as a whole.

Quote from: jrista
I think you are applying an archaic system for evaluating exposure, the Zone system, in an environment when our ability to meter and expose is vastly superior.

You apparently completely missed the whole point of the Zone System, which has very little to do with the camera and everything to do with the print.

And today's printing technology, though quite amazing, has basically the same dynamic range as what Adams had to work with, give or take. And I do mean that -- some of the papers I print on have significantly less dynamic range than Adams had available to him, and some a bit more.

The Zone System is all about capturing your image without regard to the capture technology except to maximize the quality in the print. And, yes, if it was your intention to place the frontmost door in Zone IV and the back wall in Zone VII as Art did, then you need an exposure for those parts of the scene that maximizes their image quality. With a modern DSLR -- any modern DSLR -- you're not going to get an optimal exposure for that bright a rendition of that part of the scene that doesn't also completely blow out the near-specular highlights of the metal tables. Similarly, any exposure that will be optimal for those tables will result in a very dark rendition for the catwalk. Even in the film days, if you tried to lift that exposure by that much, the grain would be every bit as distracting as digital noise.

Sorry, you are still assuming and still misunderstanding. Your still thinking that what you capture cannot be modified in post, or at least not modified as extensively as we can today with digital and RAW. We don't NEED the zone system to support quality prints. Most of Ansel's prints were CONTACT PRINTS. He didn't do much in the way of "post processing", so he needed a system that would allow him to capture the scene as he intended its final output to look. It's all about final output. In Adam's day, you needed to meter and measure your scene in order to capture something that would contact print appropriately, all in an analog and physical system.

Today, it is not about zones...its about quantity and quality of information. Damn the zones, you can push and pull your exposure, in whole or in part, just the highlights, just the shadows, just the midtones, or any variation thereof, to your hearts content with a digital RAW image. You can put any input level (input zone) at almost any output level (output zone) that you want, and achieve the kind of print you want, with minimal effort relative to what used to be done with chemicals and photographic papers in a darkroom 70 years ago. If you push things around too much, you might encounter noise. Depending on the equipment, that noise might be acceptable or unacceptable. Depending on the software you have at your disposal, it may not matter if the noise is acceptable or not, you might just be able to clean it right up and keep on pushing. Either way...its not about the zone anymore, and not necessarily even about whether the in-camera exposure is correct...its about the quantity and quality of information.

It doesn't even matter if you are printing...DR in any output medium is going to be more limited than the input medium. The "average" print is 5-6 stops of DR. A print on very high quality paper with high dMax and excellent L* might be 7 stops. I've used a couple papers that could probably eek out even more than that with OBAs. The average viewers computer screen is 8 stops. Only the top-end, properly calibrated computer screens with a hardware LUT of at least 12 bits are going to approach the kind of dynamic range and color fidelity we get from our input devices...our digital cameras and RAW images. It is a very rare photographer who has as 12-16 bit screen and the hardware to properly power it, thus enabling them to render their photography as it really is. So it's moot to complain that modern print is still in the same ballpark as photographic prints from 50, 70, even 100 years ago.

One way or another, your still compressing a large quantity of information into a smaller space. Back in the day, that information was largely rigid analog data baked into a physical medium. Today, that information is very fluid, stored in a flexible, virtual medium, and it needs to be treated as such.

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I have long thought that many of Ansel Adams photos had shadows that were far too deep, contrast that was too stark, which looked unrealistic, more surrealistic, and could have stood to be lightened to bring out some of the detail that most certainly existed there.

Much of his work was done midday. You're used to Golden Hour landscape photography. It's been many years since I've been to Yosemite, but his work certainly to me captures the mood of that valley at midday. Yes, he worked his negatives over with a rubber hose when making prints, but he captured the drama I remember.

Again, assumptions. How the hell do you know WHAT I'm "used to"? You don't know anything about me, nor my work, or the times of day I tend to photograph, or even what subjects I tend to photograph! You don't just assume...you FRICKIN ASSUME, and make a wild A*S*S of yourself in the process. You really gotta stop assuming you know things about people you know nothing about! :P

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No one views anything that large from a foot!

But there's the rub. When Art delivers his files to his clients and they pixel peep them, that's exactly what they're doing. They're viewing a roughly 12" x 18" crop (give or take) of a five-foot-by-eight-foot print from a foot away. Insane.

Cheers,

b&

Again, your assuming here... How do you know what kind of crop they are viewing? You have no idea what they are viewing, or how they might view it! Pure assumption! And thus, pure balderdash!

I don't know about your clients, but the people who view my photography, in print or on a computer screen, tend to stand or sit back and take it all in as a whole...not stand within inches and "peep". Even those who are buying my work...its about the scene, not the pixels. It's about the subject, not the pixels. Even the keen eye of other artists have never complained about my pixels.

TrumpetPower!

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #64 on: April 04, 2013, 12:41:30 AM »
Most of Ansel's prints were CONTACT PRINTS.

I'm sorry, but I can't have a polite discussion with somebody so brazenly misinformed about the life's work of the most famous landscape photographer of all time. Your statement is as insanely ludicrous as if you had written something about Ford's dedication to himself personally handcrafting each Model A his company made.

Perhaps unsurprising, the rest of your post is just as off-the-wall. Right there at the end, for example, you demonstrate that you know nothing of the dimensions of a computer display -- a device that you were presumably looking at as you typed the post.

There's nothing left to be productive of this conversation. Have the last word, if you like.

Cheers,

b&

jrista

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #65 on: April 04, 2013, 11:03:06 AM »
Most of Ansel's prints were CONTACT PRINTS.

I'm sorry, but I can't have a polite discussion with somebody so brazenly misinformed about the life's work of the most famous landscape photographer of all time. Your statement is as insanely ludicrous as if you had written something about Ford's dedication to himself personally handcrafting each Model A his company made.

Perhaps unsurprising, the rest of your post is just as off-the-wall. Right there at the end, for example, you demonstrate that you know nothing of the dimensions of a computer display -- a device that you were presumably looking at as you typed the post.

There's nothing left to be productive of this conversation. Have the last word, if you like.

Cheers,

b&

You'll have to do better than tell me I don't know what I'm talking about. I know Ansel did print enlargements, but he also frequently shot with an 8x10 large format camera off the top of his car, and contact printed the film.

Computer display dimensions and densities are arbitrary. I have a 30" screen with 103ppi, a tablet with 190ppi, and a phone with 330ppi. I have friends with 10" and 7" tablet screens, ranging from anywhere from 140ppi to 260ppi. There are thousands of computer displays, ranging in size and pixel density from 13" to 30" and 72ppi to ~110ppi (or even more, in the case of Retina displays). You want to make some more assumptions about what Art_d's customer used to view and critique his work? Was it a large computer display with a hardware LUT? Or was it on an iPad with a Retina display? Would it matter from a pixel peeping standpoint? What exactly am I missing when it comes to "knowing nothing of the dimensions of a computer display"?

The productivity in the conversation was lost when you started making wild assumptions about everyone involved or peripherally related. You assume you know what the actual scene looked like in person. You assumed you understood the nature of the lighting in the room. You assumed you knew what Art_d's customers wanted, expected, or even how they would preview and nit-pick his work! You assume a lot! There is still plenty of valid points to discuss involving human perception, dynamic range, the application of the Zone System to modern digital photography, etc. and the discussion could be had if you based your points on facts and logic rather than assumption.

art_d

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #66 on: April 04, 2013, 11:26:04 AM »
Well, now you're talking not about delivering prints, but about delivering images the client expects to pixel peep. In effect, your client is asking you for 38" x 57" prints suitable for viewing at a distance of 12".
No. I am talking about delivering files for the client with a uniformity of quality.

I have no idea where you have pulled this crazy number from. I deliver files to the clients at native resolution of the camera. I would remind you that at 300ppi, the native resolution of an uncropped  5DII image prints at 12.48x18.72 inches.

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More likely, you're not properly managing your clients's expectations properly and overselling what is reasonable to offer.
Neither. I explain to the client what they can expect, and then I meet those expectations.

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I do believe that your certainty is rather misplaced.
I am really baffled that you want to keep debating me on this point given that you weren’t there and I was. Do you think I am lying, or that my eyes just operate differently from normal human eyes?

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Every trained visual artist I've met would have seen the scene as it was, with comparatively deep shadows on the catwalk and the tables brightly lit by the skylight. And that's because they've learned to see the world around them as it is.
This statement makes no sense. Everyone sees the world around them as it is (presuming they don’t have the misfortune of impaired vision). A visual artist does not perceive black shadows where none exist…which is what you seem to be saying they would see here.

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An artist can, of course, choose how to render the scene. He might paint the inmate exactly as he saw her, with only one ear visible. He might paint the inmate looking straight out of the frame, with both ears visible. He might emulate Picasso and paint a 3/4 profile but with both ears showing. Similarly, he might render the light as it was with the tables much brighter than the catwalk, or he might render it as you "saw" it, as if you allowed your eyes time to adapt from the one illumination to the other.
There is not a time gap to adapt from one illumination to the next. Your eyes and brain are doing this instantly. We are not talking about walking out of a pitch black room into bright sunlight.

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It's also my experience that photographers tend to see the light the same way, and draw from their own bags of tricks for how to deal with it. Fix the light? Blend exposures? Filters? Digital fill? Regardless, they see that the one area is light and the other dark, even if they can squint at both and make out all the details and imagine what the final blended and equally-lit scene would look like.
Squint? There was no need to squint in this scene. There is no need to “imagine” it because the eyes are already seeing it as it needs to be.

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And that's probably the biggest thing I'm missing from your prison shot: a sense that the lighting isn't equal throughout the whole room. I'd suggest that it's reasonable to lift the shadows to make it easier to see the detail in them -- and, similarly, to tame the highlights. But what you've done is completely equalized the two, giving the sense that the whole room is as well-lit as an art gallery. Some difference in relative illumination would have been nice, but I'm not getting any.
That’s because this photograph is not supposed to show a difference in illumination, because the eye dos not perceive it. Since the invention of photography, photographers have been using different methods to manipulate exposures and equalize illumination in a scene so it looks natural. Yes, they have even been doing this in National Geographic. Because the thing that photographers understand is there is the inherent inability of a camera to capture illumination differences the way the human eye perceives them. In other words, the camera has a dynamic range limitation. Which is what we’ve been talking about all along. You seem to be quite insistent that the human eye has the same dynamic range limitations as a camera.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2013, 11:29:00 AM by art_d »

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #66 on: April 04, 2013, 11:26:04 AM »

art_d

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #67 on: April 04, 2013, 11:50:32 AM »
Yes. And my assumptions are based solely off of his description. Specifically:

Quote from: art_d
The common area on the first floor is illuminated by a skylight. The dark gray cell doors on the second level have no lighting on them at all. Exposing correctly for the highlights in this scene severly underexposes the doors. There is no way to set up any additional lighting. Lifting the shadows on the doors in post leads to very obvious pattern noise on the doors. The eventual solution is blending multiple exposures. If this had been shot with an Exmor sensor simply lifting the shadows in a single exposure would not have been a problem.

Yet, in Art's rendition, the catwalk appears to have the exact same amount of illumination as the rest of the room.

TrumptPower, here are the issues you keep conflating:

The illumination description of mine you have quoted is relevant to how the camera records the scene due to dynamic range limitations of the sensor.

That is different from how an actual person standing in that spot perceives the illumination of the scene.

Because the human eye does not perceive dynamic range limitations the way the camera does.

If you still don’t believe me, do this experiment:

On a sunny day, look out a window. Does the inside of your room suddenly go black?

Now try taking a picture with a camera. Tell me if in a single exposure you are able to not blow out the highlights in the window, and not have everything in the room severely underexposed. Tell me if that photo comes out the way your eye perceives the scene.

If human vision perceived dynamic range limitations the way you are suggesting, we would not be able to walk around in rooms with windows because we wouldn’t be able to see the furniture in front of us.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2013, 11:54:31 AM by art_d »

TrumpetPower!

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #68 on: April 04, 2013, 12:25:12 PM »
On a sunny day, look out a window. Does the inside of your room suddenly go black?

Have you ever done that experiment, yourself?

Really done it?

Because what you'd know if you had is that, yes, when you're intently looking out the window well enough to see all the detail out there, if you keep your eyes pointed in that same direction and observe your room with your peripheral vision, yes, your room is very dark indeed. And when you move your gaze back to the inside of the room, it takes a moment for your eyes to adjust. After they adjust, the room looks very normal, but it's impossible to perceive anything but a lot of brightness out the window. And if you keep switching your perception from the one to the other, you'll see that the room is quite dark but you have a good idea of what it looks like, and that the outside is quite bright but you still have a good idea of what it looks like.

I'm sitting inside right now. The lights are off but I've got a lot of windows and a skylight, so the illumination is pretty good and even inside. Not bright, but it has a feeling of very comfortable open shade. One far corner isn't quite as well lit. Plenty of light to read comfortably, but noticeably darker. Right next to it is a window. There's a thin high overcast, so the sky is a very bright white.

And it's exactly as I just described.

If I was going to photograph the scene, I'd render the room a bit on the dim side -- no more than a stop underexposed, probably just a half a stop. I'd let the far corner go on the dark side, probably about two stops underexposed. And I'd tame the outside to the bottom end of Zone VIII -- it'd be very bright, but not so bright that all detail was lost (though certainly a fair amount would go to not much more than slightly textured tone). And I'd let some of the blacks in that far corner block up -- even when I'm looking directly at them from where I'm sitting with the bright window blocked from view, I still can't see anything more than a suggestion of texture in, say, the underside of a Canon battery charger.

If it was the other way 'round, if I was outside looking in, I'd turn all that upside-down. The outside I'd render basically normally but maybe a touch on the bright side, and I wouldn't try to lift the inside above Zone III.

That's if I was going for a documentary type of rendition.

If I wanted something for a real estate agent's brochure to sell the place...well, then I'd probably be fixing the light, first. I'd probably start by actually turning on the lights, for one, and maybe add some strategic flash. Only if that wasn't an option or still not enough would I start mucking around with digital fill flash -- and, even then, the goal would be compression of dynamic range, not the elimination of it.

That's probably my biggest pet peeve with a lot of the HDR photography I see out there today. Even the stuff that's not tonemapped tends to be so heavy-handed as to make it look like there were invisible floating softboxes everywhere. Your prison scene is a perfect example.

The world doesn't look like there are invisible floating softboxes everywhere. And, yes -- there is a time and a place where it's most appropriate to turn a photographic representation of a scene into a magical faeryland with invisible floating softboxes everywhere. But why does every photo have to look like that? What's worng with simply and accurately representing what you actually saw? Why can't our photographs have the well-lit areas be brighter and the shadowed areas be darker?

And, you know, there's another advantage to a light touch with the reprocessing. When the light is magical, the results from a light touch are far more wonderful to what you get from digitally fiddling with a scene with bad light.

Cheers,

b&

art_d

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #69 on: April 04, 2013, 01:08:02 PM »
On a sunny day, look out a window. Does the inside of your room suddenly go black?

Have you ever done that experiment, yourself?

Really done it?
Really done it? As opposed to fake done it?

Sure. I did it just now. I am happy to report that when I looked out the window my room DID NOT go black.

I am not talking about staring out a window into brightness and only being able to see anything in the room with peripheral vision. I am talking about direct line of sight. Looking outside a window, you can still see stuff in the room. That is not how a camera would reproduce the scene. I am easily able to perceive what is going on outside my window and still be able to walk around inside without bumping into any furniture. In my house, my door is right next to my window. I can look out my window, see someone coming up to my door, and I can walk over to the door and see the doorknob just fine without having to wait around for my eyes to adjust.
 
Here’s another example. Say you are driving your car on a bright sunny day. Have you never glanced down at your speedometer? Or your fuel gauge? Or you radio? By your suggestion, we should not be to read our gauges without waiting. In reality, our vision compensates and we can switch between looking out the windshield and looking at our gauges with no problems.

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That's probably my biggest pet peeve with a lot of the HDR photography I see out there today. Even the stuff that's not tonemapped tends to be so heavy-handed as to make it look like there were invisible floating softboxes everywhere. Your prison scene is a perfect example.
That’s a first. Up until this day I have never heard a commercial photo of mine referred to as “heavy handed.”

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The world doesn't look like there are invisible floating softboxes everywhere. And, yes -- there is a time and a place where it's most appropriate to turn a photographic representation of a scene into a magical faeryland with invisible floating softboxes everywhere. But why does every photo have to look like that? What's worng with simply and accurately representing what you actually saw? Why can't our photographs have the well-lit areas be brighter and the shadowed areas be darker?
In order to accurately represent what was seen, you have to compensate for the fact that the camera doesn’t see it that way. The camera sensor has limitations that human perception doesn’t. How many more ways can this be explained?

What you are proposing is that photos should be presented the way the sensor records it, not the way a person actually perceives it.

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And, you know, there's another advantage to a light touch with the reprocessing. When the light is magical, the results from a light touch are far more wonderful to what you get from digitally fiddling with a scene with bad light.
 
There is no such thing as bad light. Just bad exposure.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2013, 01:10:41 PM by art_d »

Sporgon

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #70 on: April 04, 2013, 02:42:14 PM »
Oooooh, art_d, that last paragraph of yours is sooooooo wrong.

From a picture point of view, not just photography, the lighting is a fundamental part of the picture, irrespective of how you might expose it in photography.

Go and look at some paintings produced by really great artist and then tell me they are not all about the light.

And by the way, your eyes don't see, your brain does.


« Last Edit: April 04, 2013, 02:46:18 PM by Sporgon »

art_d

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #71 on: April 04, 2013, 02:49:45 PM »
Oooooh, art_d, that last paragraph of yours is sooooooo wrong.

From a picture point of view, not just photography, the lighting is a fundamental part of the picture, irrespective of how you might expose it in photography.

Go and look at some paintings produced by really great artist and then tell me they are not all about the light.
Of course it is fundamental. You can't make a picture without it.

Light is light. There can be a little or a lot of it. But neither is good or bad. It is how we utilize it that is good or bad.

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And by the way, your eyes don't see, your brain does.
Yes. I said that at the beginning of this part of the dialogue (somewhere around page 4).
« Last Edit: April 04, 2013, 02:57:22 PM by art_d »

TrumpetPower!

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #72 on: April 04, 2013, 04:47:31 PM »
Oooooh, art_d, that last paragraph of yours is sooooooo wrong.

From a picture point of view, not just photography, the lighting is a fundamental part of the picture, irrespective of how you might expose it in photography.

Go and look at some paintings produced by really great artist and then tell me they are not all about the light.

And by the way, your eyes don't see, your brain does.

I gotta agree with Sporgon here, and it really goes to the heart of the matter.

It's all about the light.

Period, full stop, end of story.

The scene is irrelevant; it's all about the light. Great light in a junkyard will make for awesome art. Bad light in formal gardens will generally make for bad art, unless you work with it to paint a picture of contrasts. And trying to shoot anything in bad light but make it look like good light? That way Elvis portraits on black velvet lies.

Cheers,

b&

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #72 on: April 04, 2013, 04:47:31 PM »

art_d

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #73 on: April 04, 2013, 05:02:16 PM »
The scene is irrelevant; it's all about the light. Great light in a junkyard will make for awesome art. Bad light in formal gardens will generally make for bad art, unless you work with it to paint a picture of contrasts. And trying to shoot anything in bad light but make it look like good light?
Ok. Define "bad light" then.


TrumpetPower!

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #74 on: April 04, 2013, 05:04:52 PM »
Looking outside a window, you can still see stuff in the room.

Actually, you can't. I do believe it's a common undergraduate psychology lab experiment to have a subject close her eyes, have the experimenter re-arrange the scene, have the subject open her eyes and look straight ahead at a well-lit scene, and be utterly unable to even vaguely describe what's off to the sides and not directly lit (but by no means in the dark) without directly looking at them.

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Say you are driving your car on a bright sunny day. Have you never glanced down at your speedometer? Or your fuel gauge? Or you radio? By your suggestion, we should not be to read our gauges without waiting.

First, they're typically rather well lit. Second, they're very high contrast. Third, they're very simple. Fourth, you know exactly what to expect.

Add that all up and it takes basically nothing to gather enough photons from the scene to interpret what's there.

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There is no such thing as bad light. Just bad exposure.

Well, at least you've managed to clearly explain why you're not understanding anything I've been typing...not sure I can help you to understand, though, except to urge you to carefully and critically look at your surroundings and see what's there. Don't know what's there. See what's there.

You might also take some drawing and / or painting classes. A good teacher will truly open your eyes, and you'll never see the world the same way again.

Cheers,

b&

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Re: Canon 5d Mark III Shadow recovery
« Reply #74 on: April 04, 2013, 05:04:52 PM »