Sunday, November 27, 2011

ISO bracketing with the Olympus Pen

John Neel has an interesting piece on Pixiq about using the ISO bracketing feature in the Olympus Pen cameras. I'm using an E-PL2 and learning something new almost every time it's in my hands.

Neel pointed out that unlike many other digital cameras, the Pen can take a single RAW image, then automatically make three JPEGs with as much as 1 stop of over and under exposure. Assuming the original is properly exposed, the three images can be combined for a high dynamic range photo, or the RAW files can be processed for an even wider exposure latitude. One big advantage is that this process can be used for action shots unlike some other exposure bracketing methods since it relies on a single shot, not consecutive ones.

Now, that Camaro Z28 up above is an HDR image from a single RAW file. Believe me, the car is pretty ratty and the photo makes it look better than it is. I made one JPEG that was 3 stops over exposed in order to get some shadow detail. The under exposure was just one stop. I tried to keep it looking natural rather than cartoonish.

This is a DC-10 that's being stripped at Tulsa International. I worked on DC-10 avionics for years but never managed to ride on one. Chances are I never will. This image is cartoonish, and shows what happens when being overly-enthusiastic while playing with the HDR sliders. Still, I like it for the stark look of an airliner on its way to the graveyard.

I haven't forgotten my old rangefinder cameras, though I'll admit to using the Olympus Pen almost exclusively for a while. But I just finished running a roll through the Konica Auto S2, and started another one in the Canon Canonet. Also, I was surprised to find there's a roll in the Nikon N6006, so it went back into my camera bag to be used in the following couple of weeks. The Konica photos should be ready tomorrow.

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