Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Understanding exposure basics


From:

Lighting for Photographers: Flash Exposure Fundamentals

with Brent Winebrenner

Video: Understanding exposure basics

As you know, exposure is a delicate balancing act that requires the alignment of four distinctly different yet interrelated variables that include Illumination, Sensor Sensitivity, Shutter Speed, and Aperture. The first factor that we're going to consider is brightness or luminance. Luminance describes how much light--either from a natural source like the sun or an artificial source like a small strobe-- is falling on the subject. The second variable, Sensor Sensitivity, determines how much light is required to record an exposure.
please wait ...
Watch the Online Video Course Lighting for Photographers: Flash Exposure Fundamentals
1h 27m Advanced Mar 04, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Expand your lighting options and get the most out of your flash as photographer and teacher Brent Winebrenner takes a practical, hands-on look at the theory behind exposure, with a special emphasis on electronic flash exposure.

Even with today's automatic flash systems, there are good reasons to understand how flash exposure really works. Brent details these concepts in this course. The course describes how to calculate the true power of your flash and how to modify its output to match your needs, a technique that can extend battery life, reduce recycle time, and provide exposure control that is more predictable than fully automatic modes. The course concludes with several shooting scenarios during which Brent explores the creative use of gels, reflectors, and other light modifiers.

Topics include:
  • Understanding exposure basics
  • Reviewing aperture, ISO, and shutter speed
  • Adjusting strobe power and flash to subject distance
  • Finding the guide number of a strobe
  • Making calculations based on ISO
  • Understanding power ratios
Subject:
Photography
Author:
Brent Winebrenner

Understanding exposure basics

As you know, exposure is a delicate balancing act that requires the alignment of four distinctly different yet interrelated variables that include Illumination, Sensor Sensitivity, Shutter Speed, and Aperture. The first factor that we're going to consider is brightness or luminance. Luminance describes how much light--either from a natural source like the sun or an artificial source like a small strobe-- is falling on the subject. The second variable, Sensor Sensitivity, determines how much light is required to record an exposure.

The ISO setting determines the sensor's sensitivity to light. The setting controls the amount of amplification that is being applied to the digital data that is collected by the sensor. When you are shooting in low light, or with an underpowered flash, you can increase the numerical value of the ISO to increase the gain or amplification. As this gain increases, less illumination is needed to achieve the same exposure. Together, luminance and sensor sensitivity combine to determine what in available light is known as the Exposure Value.

Once you know how much light you have and how much you need, the photometric system identifies a unique number called the Exposure Value. The Exposure Value is linked to all of the combinations of shutter speed and aperture that will create a normally exposed image. A similar process occurs when shooting with flash. But instead of beginning with a continuously burning light source like the sun or a tungsten bulb, all of the light is produced in a very short burst of energy from a flash tube. When we're dealing with small strobes, the power output of the flash unit and the sensor sensitivity combine to determine what is called a Guide Number.

I'll get into this in a lot more detail in a later chapter, but once we know the guide number for any given flash, then we know all of the combinations of flash to subject distance and aperture that will create a normal exposure at any given ISO. Learning the principles behind the guide number is the key to unlocking the mysteries of small strobe flash exposure. That's what I hope to do with you in the rest of this course.

There are currently no FAQs about Lighting for Photographers: Flash Exposure Fundamentals.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Lighting for Photographers: Flash Exposure Fundamentals.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK

Upgrade to View Courses Offline

login

With our new Desktop App, Annual Premium Members can download courses for Internet-free viewing.

Upgrade Now

After upgrading, download Desktop App Here.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your lynda.com subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Start your FREE 10-day trial

Begin learning software, business, and creative skills—anytime,
anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
lynda.com provides
Unlimited access to over 4,000 courses—more than 100,000 video tutorials
Expert-led instruction
On-the-go learning. Watch from your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Switch back and forth as you choose.
Start Your FREE Trial Now
 

A trusted source for knowledge.

 

We provide training to more than 4 million people, and our members tell us that lynda.com helps them stay ahead of software updates, pick up brand-new skills, switch careers, land promotions, and explore new hobbies. What can we help you do?

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.