Photo of the Week

Red Dunes (Dune 43) of Namib-Naukuft Park, Namibia

Nikon D300, 70-200VR, 95mm @ f9 1/640 sec, -2EV

While shooting in the sand dunes of Namibia, I found myself in an environment that was largely reds and blues.  After looking at the large histogram for general exposure, I always shifted to the RGB histograms for evaluation.  More often than not, I found that I was blowing out the reds.  A simple drop in EV solved the blown channel.  Usually using only a -1/3EV to solve normal exposure problems, I was very surprised by having to drop down into the -2′s for a correct exposure.  While post processing, I was also surprised by the white balance of the camera.  I always shoot in auto WB mode and correct during post processing.  When shooting in extreme conditions, it is not uncommon for me to use either a white balance card or a color checker to help with setting my white balance in post processing.  What surprised be was how far off the color temperature was when I started the post processing.  I am going to attribute this to the high amount of reds from the sand.  The lesson here is to use all of your tools, both in camera and out of camera.  Learn when the in-camera meter is smart, when it is dumb,  and take the necessary actions to get the shot.

Cheers and happy photo’ing