Exercise 3: HISTOGRAM

The purpose of this exercise is to increase your familiarity with histograms. However the exercise does not require doing in-depth analysis at this stage.

I have to confess; I do not check histogram on regular intervals. Normally I like taking some test shots and that is the time I check the histogram. However I am very much aware of its importance. It is possibly one of the most useful tools available in digital photography.

Histogram represents a tonal range of your particular image.

grey-band-explain

To fulfil the exercise requirement, I have used 2-stop exposure bracketing to take 3 images with varying exposure for all the three scenarios (Low contrast, Average contrast, High contrast). To explain the histogram with the corresponding image I have taken a screen shot. I have also left the highlights and shadow clipping on to show the details correctly. Overexposed highlights are red and underexposed shadows are blue.

1. Low Contrast:

For low contrast scenario, I have chosen a cobbled stone.
Low-contrast

Fig:1 (For this image exposure setting was -2/3EV)

Low-contrast-1

Fig:2 (For this image exposure setting was 0EV)

Low-contrast-2

Fig:3 (For this image exposure setting was 2/3EV)

Here according to the histogram, Fig:2 is technically more sound, however I still prefer Fig:1 which is comparatively underexpose. The reason is, the first image brings out the contrast of the textures, and because of the darker shadows the image does not look flat.

2. Average Contrast:

For average contrast scenario, I have chosen a shopping mall environment.
Average-contrast

Fig:4 (For this image exposure setting was -2/3EV)

Average-contrast-1

Fig:5 (For this image exposure setting was 0EV)

Average-contrast-2

Fig:6 (For this image exposure setting was 2/3EV)

3. Average Contrast:

For high contrast scenario, I have chosen an egg served in a white plate and kept against a black background.

High-contrast

Fig:7 (For this image exposure setting was -2/3EV)

High-contrast-1

Fig:8 (For this image exposure setting was 0EV)

High-contrast-2

Fig:9 (For this image exposure setting was 2/3EV)

As my OCA tutor John Todd mentioned correctly, “Although an excellent guide to tones a histogram has no way of including any emotional responses, so if you shot an image in a dark and moody wood the histogram would probably indicate to you that your image was too dark. If you followed this advice you would end up with an image lacking atmosphere and mood. So subjectivity and experience in interpretation comes into play as well”.

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