Nikon F100 (F-100) spotmetering (spot metering) - Technique
A reader reviews the book at amazon.com
If you do not want to read
the book titled "The confused photographer's guide to on-camera spotmetering (spot
metering / partial metering) ISBN: 0966081706" simply read the following:
The on-camera spotmeter (spot meter /
partial meter) is the most powerful exposure tool in the world. Read the following page
and decide for yourself if you understand the concept. If you do understand everything
on the next page, and you can apply the technique described and produce correctly exposed
images, then that is all you need! If, however, you even have the slightest doubt about
this technique, or if you are still the least bit confused, this book is for you.
Remember: either you know how to use your on-camera spotmeter effectively or you
dont. There is no in-between! I believe this is the simplest, easiest, best
illustrated, and most practical book about on-camera spotmetering in the world. To see
more of the book and what is covered, please browse:
or send an e-mail to
Cheat sheet: The entire book condensed onto
one page (well almost!)
Put a roll of 100 ISO slide
film in your Nikon F-100 (F100) camera and choose an outdoor subject. Activate the
spotmetering option on your camera and set your cameras mode to manual and the
shutter sped to 1/125 sec. To avoid confusion, in this exercise we will increase and
decrease the exposure by opening-up and closing-down the aperture. The shutter speed will
Observe your subject and break
it down into its simple subject (single tone) components. Choose a Reference Tone. A Reference Tone is a simple tone, usually chosen from the most important
part of the subject. Once you have selected the Reference Tone, point your
spotmeter at this tone and find its normal exposure. If your subject does not have a
distinct single tone and you are using slide film, pick out a tone that is medium gray or
brighter. If you are using a negative film, pick out a tone that is medium gray or darker.
Lets assume the
"normal exposure" indicated by your camera for this Reference Tone is 125@f-8
(i.e., 1/125 sec. at an aperture openning of 8).
As you may know, the spotmeters "normal
exposure" from any
simple (single toned) surface will always provide the photographer with an 18%
gray image tone.
tone that your normal
exposure provides is independent of the original tone of your subject. It is extremely important that you understand this point.
The following is an illustration: