Developing For A Foggy Scene

Discussion in 'Talk About Techniques' started by Ian-Barber, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. Ian-Barber

    Ian-Barber Admin Staff Member Registered User

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    Scenario
    Very foggy conditions with a subject brightness range of 5 stops.

    Question:

    In development, to keep the mood of the foggy conditions, would you...
    1. Would you develop as N ?
    2. Would you develop to maybe N+1 to increase contrast?
     
  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Active Member Registered User

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    I've done a lot of shots on really foggy days and found just shooting normally works perfectly, N+1 will kill the atmosphere.

    I remember back in the early 1990's my then girlfriend also a photographer telling me I was wasting my time, ***ing stupid, going out shooting in the fog, in fact I made some of my best images and they are very easy to print.

    Just go for it.

    Ian
     
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  3. David M

    David M Active Member Registered User

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    Five stops seems reasonable for a foggy scene; it could even be less with dense fog, depending on what you saw at the time. You might take advantage of the narrow tonal range to give a bit more exposure, to move the shadows off the toe. Many foggy pictures have some objects closer to the camera that retain some contrast, which helps with aerial perspective.
    On the other hand, if you are developing for scanning, you may prefer to stretch out the histogram by using N+X and make your adjustments on screen. I think you may well know more about scanning than I do.
     
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  4. Ian-Barber

    Ian-Barber Admin Staff Member Registered User

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    Did you try any with N+ Ian out of interest
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Active Member Registered User

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    Yes I have tried N+1 in fog Ian, but it killed the atmosphere, my experience is there's more micro contrast in fog than on a dull dank day like today.

    If the fog is an integral part of the image then you really don't want to go boosting contrast, either at the taking stage or in printing/scanning.

    [​IMG]

    A very foggy day in the Blue Hills (Cornwall),

    [​IMG]

    my experience is that the camera (film and digital) sees better through fog than we do. I hadn't noticed the woman and dog :D

    If I was honing in on a small area I might want to ignore the fog and get that contrast boost from N+1 exposure/development.

    Ian
     
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  6. Ian-Barber

    Ian-Barber Admin Staff Member Registered User

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    Thanks Ian, I will take this on board and try it
     
  7. David M

    David M Active Member Registered User

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    Very nice illustrations. On my screen, they could easily be printed with even less contrast. I believe that, as a red filter helps to penetrate haze, a blue one will emphasise it. Is this true?
     
  8. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Active Member Registered User

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    The prints are almost certainly a bit lighter and less contrasty, computer screens vary.

    Yes orange or red filter helps cut through haze and light fog blue will emphasise slightly, I rarely use filters though the exception being a green filter.

    Ian
     
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