At the time of this photograph, I had just started using my new camera, the Nikon D7000. Even though I had been shooting with the Nikon D50, purchased 5-6 years before, the new features and additional dials and buttons on this camera had me slightly confused. What I didn’t realize until later was that the “new” front dial adjusted exposure compensation. So while I was busy trying to use the dial to adjust shutter speed (back dial I eventually remembered), I fiddled with the front dial and had in some negative exposure compensation and everything came out darker than intended. Fortunately, since I shoot in RAW format, not all was lost as compared to shooting in JPG with most point-and-shoot cameras. While you can recover some dark areas in JPG file photos in post, some data is lost and cannot be recovered as the photo has already been compressed and some data “thrown away” in the process.
I had planned on skipping this year’s California State Fair because the fair just feels like a giant As-Seen-on-TV convention. The parts of the fair that I enjoy, such as checking out the livestock (especially the llamas!), trying to gauge when my photography will stack up to the jury-accepted photographs in the Fine Art competition, and being intrigued by the orderly rows of agriculture on display, are usually not as appreciated by the people I go with. I feel bad wasting their time spending what seems to be an inordinate amount of time staring at and photographing rows of lettuce, for instance.
Anyhow, this sunflower and bee photograph was too dark when shot due to my accidental setting of negative compensation. I was able to bring back the exposure in post.
EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center weighted avg metering mode, 135mm, ISO 800, 1/200 sec, f/5.6
Sunflower, Bee. California State Fair, Cal Expo, Sacramento, California. July 30, 2011. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.