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Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,017
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: photos washed out


@ScottyPwrote:

If the white uniform is close enough to you that the camera exposes for it, shouldn't that be like shooting snow or a brides dress, when the camera tries to make the white look like grey?  (Shot is underexposed by the meter?)  Don't you normally want to dial in a stop or two of positive exposure comp to fix it? 


And/or use center-weighted metering.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
VIP
Posts: 11,358
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: photos washed out

"Don't you normally want to dial in a stop or two of positive exposure comp to fix it?"

 

And if you do, it will wash out the rest of the scene.  It may be a question of one or the other.  There is a tough or war between the highlights and shadows that any DSLR can capture.  Limits. This is what we are discussing.  We need an example.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Reputable Contributor
Posts: 766
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: photos washed out

[ Edited ]

@ebiggs1wrote:

Exactly!  An over exposed shot.  Isn't that what he said?  "Wsahed out" 


Sorry, but no. You've got it backwards.

 

When metering off of unusually bright objects (i.e., a white uniform), the camera will want to UNDER EXPOSE the image and some + Exposure Compensation may be needed (if using any of the auto exposure modes).

 

If images are "washed out", chances are that there's too much + Exposure Compensation. Or some other exposure setting is incorrect and causing the original poster to see a lot of over-exposure. 

 

It's also possibly "glare", which a polarizing filter might reduce. Especially if the grass is "white instead of green". That's quite likely reflections off the grass... a common problem with foliage of all types, that can be bad on a sunny day or even worse when it's overcast.

 

It also may be that it's only their computer monitor... that the images are actually fine. Flat screen monitors can't display the entire dynamic range of digital iamges... tend to clip both highlights and shadows.

 

I also wouldn't trust a computer monitor that hasn't been properly calibrated. At default settings, most tend to be overly bright, causing one to adjust their images way too dark for printing. The only way to get close to correct is to use a calibration device such as an X-Rite or Datacolor Spyder or similar. (If you do much printing, those devices will pay for themselves over time, with savings of wasted paper and ink or the cost of having images reprinted if you send your work out.)

 

The image playback on the LCD screen on the rear of the camera also should be taken with a grain of salt. It's just too small, isn't calibrated very precisely and is always subject to ambient light conditions. The histogram displayed there (and in some post-processing software) is much more informative of the actual exposure condition of an image. If the histogram consistently shows a lot of "data piled up" against the right hand side of the graph, it's probably indicating over exposure (though sometimes even that may be accurate if a scene is very bright overall... for example a snow scene). Likewise, a histogram that's "piled up" on the lefthand side (and falling well short of the RH side), very likely indicates under-exposuer.

 

Other things that can cause washed out images...

 

Lack of a lens hood causing "veiling flare", when the sun is able to strike the front element of the lens (or, especially, an uncoated filter on it). Overall contast is decreased and colors will be desaturated. However, this usually this also causes underexposure (not over).

 

I'd love to see one or more sample images posted, with EXIF still intact. We might be able to help more, if we could see those.

 

Original poster....

 

Why are you using ISO 100 for sports photography? I rarely use less than 400, even on a sunny day. That insures an adequate shutter speed is possible even in shade or if a cloud comes floating by. I also found my 7D images were no more noisy, possilby even less noisy at ISO 400, instead of 100. The 7D Mark IIs I'm useing now are even better.

 

There also was a white paper from Canon about the time the 7D was introduced (2009 or 2010ish?), regarding higher density sensors having greater sensitivity to camera shake blur...That was when the 18MP APS-C cameras were first in use. Today's APS-C models have even higher density (20MP and 24MP that's likely even more susceptible. Canon's suggestion to counteract this potential blurring effect was to use a bit higher ISO to enable slightly faster shutter speeds. I had made a habit of using 1/focal length to determine my min. shutter speed with my earlier, lower resolution cameras... But upped my ISO and shutter speeds after readihng that white paper. Don't know if it's still online anywhere. But now I try to use 1/640 with 400mm, 1/420 with 300mm, etc. (I'm pretty good getting steady shots, so I don't adjust for the 1.6X crop factor of the cameras. But everyone is different and some folks may be able to use slower, while others require faster shutter speeds).

 

***********


Alan Myers
San Jose, Calif., USA
"Walk softly and carry a big lens."
GEAR: 5DII, 7DII (x2), 7D(x2) some other cameras, various lenses & accessories
FLICKR & ZENFOLIO 

VIP
Posts: 11,358
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: photos washed out

"Sorry, but no. You've got it backwards."

     "An over exposed shot.  Isn't that what he said?  "Wsahed out""

 

If you overexpose for any part of the scene the entire scene will be overexposed.  Washed out in other words.  The camera doesn't know you want only a white wedding dress, for example, overexposed and leave the rest alone.

 

Of course PS does and that is where it needs to be.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,017
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: photos washed out


@ebiggs1wrote:

"Sorry, but no. You've got it backwards."

     "An over exposed shot.  Isn't that what he said?  "Wsahed out""

 

If you overexpose for any part of the scene the entire scene will be overexposed.  Washed out in other words.  The camera doesn't know you want only a white wedding dress, for example, overexposed and leave the rest alone.

 

Of course PS does and that is where it needs to be.


If one part of the scene is overexposed, that tells you nothing about the rest of the scene. It depends entirely on the dynamic range of the scene. In flat lighting with little variation in the intensity of the colors in the scene, what you say is true. Otherwise it may not be.

 

Any photo editor that supports RAW mode should be able to bring up shadows and tone down unblown highlights. The capability is not unique to PS.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
Reputable Contributor
Posts: 766
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: photos washed out

I don't understand what the dispute is here....

 

Cameras use a reflective metering system that can be heavily influenced by subject tonality and original poster stated that "uniforms are white". If, for example, spot metering off the player's uniform, or to a lesser degree if using other metering patterns, the camera SHOULD want to under-expose. Normally this would call for some + Exposure Compensation.

 

HOWEVER, as I noted this is just the opposite of what the original poster is seeing in their images. That suggests that either too much + Exposure Compensation is dialed in or some other exposure setting is incorrect. Or  they are actually seeing something else such as reflections that might be reduced with a circular polarizing filter... Or the image appears  wahed out due to lack of a lens hood and strong light striking the front of the lens (or possibly a filter that's on there)  although in this situation I'd also expect to see under, rather than over-exposure. 

 

It also could be that the images are actually fine, but the display of them on the original poster's computer monitor is washed out due to an overly bright, uncalibrated monitor.

 

We'll never really know for sure unless we see the original images and their respective EXIF data. If we had that to look at, we could probably narrow it down a lot more.

 

***********


Alan Myers
San Jose, Calif., USA
"Walk softly and carry a big lens."
GEAR: 5DII, 7DII (x2), 7D(x2) some other cameras, various lenses & accessories
FLICKR & ZENFOLIO 

 

 

Occasional Contributor
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎01-10-2018

Re: photos washed out

Thanks for the wonderful and informative comments. I apologize for not responding or posting pictures. I have been traveling on business for a week and just back.  I will read thru all this and certainly get a few pictures posted as examples.  Just wanted to thank everyone for their time.

Debbie

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