Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Judging Exposure

In a recent comment, one reader wrote:

"A lot of my pictures look well exposed on the screen of my camera, but when downloaded to the computer - they are way too dark!!!???"

Let me encourage all of you to trust your DSLR more than your computer screen when it comes to exposure. Your camera might not be perfect, but newer cameras (including the Nikon D40) have great displays. Your computer screen, on the other hand, probably won't be accurate. It may be older and dim, making your pictures look dark. Or the brightness value may be adjusted either way to change how your pictures look. Have you ever seen one of your images on someone else's computer and thought, "That's not what it looked like on my screen." Who's screen is right? Probably neither. Unless you have an expensive display that is calibrated regularly your computer screen is giving you a pretty arbitrary view of your pictures. It's not a good way to judge exposure or color. Sorry.
I'll explain how to judge your pictures' exposure from an objective point of view next time. In the meantime, don't trust your computer display.