Question: Dark dog in the snow
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Thread: Question: Dark dog in the snow

  1. #1
    HersheyK's Dad's Avatar
    HersheyK's Dad is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultQuestion: Dark dog in the snow

    Fact: I am an amateur with more camera than I know how to use.

    I use a Pentax K10D camera. When I take shots of HK in the snow the camera exposes for the snow and HK ends up very dark with little discerable detail. The brighter the sun the worse it gets. Will pushing the ev setting help? How far should I push it. How many fstops should I push it, if the is a better approach? Will pushing the ASA help? Suggestions?

    She is usually far enough away and not taking up much of the frame so I don't think center monitoring would help and she is usually moving.

    Okay, ready for suggestions.
    PS: I know the camera does not make the photographer, but the photographer may make the camera.
    Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.

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  3. #2
    Linda1's Avatar
    Linda1 is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Question: Dark dog in the snow

    Good question. I have the same problem with Jazzy. I don't know what the right answer is. I sometimes get a great picture and other times Jazzy is a brown blob. Today I was able to get this shot. The snow is blown, but at least I can see Jazzy's features. The snow was bright, but over cast sky.
    Canon EOS 350D
    1/800s f/6.3 at 48.0mm iso400


    I decided to research a little. One place said: Winter offers some fabulous light, especially in the morning and late afternoon. But it's tricky, too. The bright white of snow and ice reflects sunlight, and you end up with too much light in your pictures. This means less detail, less contrast, and washed-out colors. Here is one way to handle all that light: Turn on your flash: More light may seem like the last thing you need, but the flash actually balances out the light off the snow, filling in darker areas, so you get the picture you want.

    Here is a link to a good article. I'll have to try some of these ideas when I get the time.
    http://www.digicamhelp.com/learn/nature/snow.php

    Brookville, Pa.

  4. #3
    HersheyK's Dad's Avatar
    HersheyK's Dad is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Question: Dark dog in the snow

    Thanks Linda. I have heard the flash technique before. Just need to remember to do it. When out in the snow, I often have the 70-300mm lens on and HK is not exactly close. Not sure if the flash has 30-100 foot effectiveness. Might try it.

    I think I might have to get disciplined and experiment with ev settings, and then forcing the aperature maybe.
    Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.

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  6. #4
    LabEh is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultRe: Question: Dark dog in the snow

    A flash that acts like a "fill light" will work. The challenge with a flash is the dog has to be close enough for the flash to work. One thing to do adjust how your camera meters the photo. Some modes will look at the overall light in the scene and set the shot based on a bright setting (snow) which won't help at all with the dark dog. If you can change your camera to meter off the middle of the focus point then meter off your dog's coat you'll get a better shot.

    Bring sunny days can be a challenge, but just remember light bounces off snow so get down to your knees or sit down and shot up using the bounced light. (example in photo below).

    I'll let you in on a secret some pet photographers use... spray the dog with water first... water shines



    Gary

  7. #5
    3TailsWaggin's Avatar
    3TailsWaggin is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Question: Dark dog in the snow

    Shoot in manual mode and expose for the dog and then you can slighty overexpose for the snow but still have enough light for your dogs features, etc.

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