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Expert
Posts: 52
Registered: ‎01-12-2014
Message 1 of 9 (2,820 Views)
Accepted Solution

Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Meanwhile back in the dilema of exposing on the run.

I've just shot a frantic hour of 50fps SLOG2 without access to charts, meter or time to check results. Shooting without a LUT is hard enough to focus, but the high contrast just confused me into over exposing, so i switched it out and trusted my experience.

In the light of this mayhem I sat down and worked out that zebra 2 set tp 45% with the LUT off gives a reasonable match to skin tones and think this could be a good way of getting through a similar situation. Has anyone else tried this?

I have read Alisters extensive input on Log, but its always uses mid grey. Not always to hand in the thick of it.

Also when I have tried some tests, I notice that exposing to these zebras without a LUT is ok, but when off speed using the same guide, the F5 overexposes slightly. Why should a speed change make a difference?

Rambling over. any thoughts?

Expert
Posts: 1,474
Registered: ‎11-20-2012
Message 2 of 9 (2,817 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

[ Edited ]

The answer is much simpler than you think, but first I'm curious to know why you think it is acceptable to judge exposure (regardless of the specific zebra level chosen) on something as variable as human faces. I am often called upon to shoot Africans, asians, latinos, northern Europeans, and sometimes white people who just have a nice summer tan, etc.   How can one zebra number work for all of those people?  A zebra level that gives me a perfect exposre on Jim Gaffigan's pale face can't possible give me the right exposure if I'm shooting Chris Rock.  Think about it. 

 

You need to meausre zebra on a target of known reflectance.  That could be a calibrated 18% gray card, but that is a hassle to use and if you set zebras low enough for a gray card zebras will create a huge mess in your viewfinder.  An easier target is bright reflected white.  It could be a white card, a piece of bright white typing paper, the collar of a bright white dress shirt, etc.   I've found that bright whites are nearly the same reflectance no matter what the material is so they make a very consistent and reliable target for judging exposure almost anyplace and anytime.  If you learn to use zebras properly with white targets you won't need any other exposure tools, you'll be able to nail exposure in a fraction of a second with no second-guessing, and you'll barely even notice zebras in your viewfinder.

Expert
Posts: 52
Registered: ‎01-12-2014
Message 3 of 9 (2,811 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Hey Doug, Thanks for picking this up. I know exactly what you mean. Basically i guess my ultimate reference has usually been my hand! The white reference is interesting, but there is not always something white in the shot as was the case recently. Just pastry and skin. I'll take it on board though. I've only used log when the scene requires it till now, but thought I would try and use it for the entire shoot. Maybe I will go back to, as and when for now.
Expert
Posts: 1,474
Registered: ‎11-20-2012
Message 4 of 9 (2,806 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Sometimes you have to put a white card into the shot or have the talent hold it for a few seconds while you set the exposure and then take it away.  It's the modern equivalent of going over and taking a reading with an incident light meter.  Your hand might make a consistent target for YOU but you have to make sure your hand is under the same lighting as your subject.  That's not going work too well for interviews, product shots, etc. where the lighting is quite different at the camera position.

Expert
Posts: 2,485
Registered: ‎11-21-2012
Message 5 of 9 (2,805 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Although in an ideal world you'd always be able to put a white/grey card in shot to check, I'm with Doug in that using in that the easiest way out here is to set the zebras for white. So, if you're shooting slog2, set the lower level zebra to 59% (and aim to get that on any bright white objects in shot) and set the upper level zebra to the clip point (and aim to never see it).

Use the WFM monitor too: get the bulk of your image in the top half of the lower third.... very roughly speaking.

Of course the best solution is to ditch the Sony EVF and get something like a Gratical: then you can always use a LUT!

It's absolutely comical that Sony haven't added additional LUT support for S&Q to the new DVF-EL200.
Expert
Posts: 1,707
Registered: ‎06-12-2013
Message 6 of 9 (2,798 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

They havnt ? 

 

Expert
Posts: 52
Registered: ‎01-12-2014
Message 7 of 9 (2,796 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Thanks, good points. I will have a bash using the white plan!
Expert
Posts: 2,485
Registered: ‎11-21-2012
Message 8 of 9 (2,769 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

Nope.
Expert
Posts: 1,474
Registered: ‎11-20-2012
Message 9 of 9 (2,746 Views)

Re: Ei exposure zebras and off speed

[ Edited ]

Just for the record, I never gave a zebra number nor do I agree that 59% is best number to use if you want to expose S-LOG correctly.

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