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Pointing a Light Meter to the Camera or To The Flash?

sathlersathler Member
edited July 2014 in home
HI everyone!

When using a light meter (with a flash off camera) should I meter towards the camera or the flash?

This would be for a fill flash ( around 30% flash ) outdoors for portraits. My light meter is the Sekonic L358.

Thank you,

Sathler,
Australia

Comments

  • TrevTrev Moderator

    To the camera. It's the exposure you want overall from camera position and if you have the light off to one side a fair way, then meter for the flash, you will have 'correct' exposure on that side of face precisely and the remainder will be under-exposed, therefore negating the 'modelling' you were after in the first place.

    It takes a bit to get your head around it, but 99% of the time you want exposure correct from where you are shooting from.

    Exceptions could be a strong side light, with moody under, but generally speaking at the camera's position.

    Especially in your case where it's only fill.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    edited July 2014
    This is a huge debate, but mostly pointless, since the difference in the light-meter readings is usually not that great. Besides, this would be well within what you could adjust for in post-processing, especially if you shoot RAW.

    Even more so that you're thinking here in terms of fill-flash. Then the exact flash exposure is less important. A teensy-tiny less fill-flash won't make a difference.

    But to assuage your concerns - test this, and see how much of a difference there is.
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Neil vN said: This is a huge debate, but mostly pointless, since the difference in the light-meter readings is usually not that great. Besides, this would be well within what you could adjust for in post-processing, especially if you shoot RAW.
    Yes, precisely valid point in post-processing.

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