During and After Shooting

► Check your exposure using the camera's histogram. The most critical part of the histogram is the right-hand (highlight) end of the scale, so always activate your camera's highlight warning system if it has one. This feature displays burned-out highlights as blinking white or red areas in the monitor's preview (view finder).

If your camera can also display RGB histograms, these are preferable to simple luminance histograms, as they give a more detailed overview of which color channels (if any) have been clipped.

► Don't forget to check white balance. If necessary, use a reference photo of a color target shot under the same conditions as the rest of your shoot. You can use a gray card or a color card (such as the X-Rite "Mini Color-Checker"). You can then employ the eyedropper tool for the gray reference (the third box from bottom left in our illustration) and set the white balance for your image. See also the description of this method in section 5.3.1 on page 160.

► Avoid hard or high contrast and take a sequence of differently exposed shots if you are not sure of your lighting. You can then either select your best shot or merge multiple shots into a single well-exposed image (using one of a number of techniques) later. Built-in bracketing functional-

Figure 2-4: If possible, use your camera's histogram to check your exposure.

Figure 2-4: If possible, use your camera's histogram to check your exposure.

Figure 2-5: A test shot of a color reference target (here, the X-Rite Mini ColorChecker).

ity can help here, but it is often better to make your own manual settings in order to keep control of the situation.

► Avoid high ISO values wherever possible, they produce increased image noise. However, a noisy image is always preferable to a blurred one caused by a slow shutter speed.

► Use a tripod whenever possible. This increases your exposure range and allows you to use longer shutter speeds without increasing the ISO value in low light situations.

* These techniques are described in detail ► Take multiple shots if you are planning to merge your photos into a pan-in chapter 9. orama, a high dynamic range (HDR), or super-resolution image.*

> Use Av mode for these types of bracketing sequences. I.e., keep the aperture constant and vary the shutter speed.

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