52 Project-2016-The Zone System

This week’s assignment was to take photos using the Zone System scale; a system formulated by Ansel Adams and Fred Archer. The scale divides white, gray and black tones in between 11 Zones, with the middle – Zone V – as its neutral gray.  If used correctly, the scale ensures correct exposure every time in every situation!

The photos selected below provide a few examples of what happens when you spot meter off of different Zones and how I should have adjusted my exposure.  All are SOOC.

52 Project-Zone System 1 52 Project-Zone System 2
Left photo:  I metered off of the dark brown fur, which was too dark, and the result was an overexposed photo.  Solution – increase f stop 2 stops towards Zone V.

Right photo: I metered off of the sky, which was too bright, and that caused an underexposed photo.  Solution – decrease f stop 2 stops towards Zone V.

Below photo: The final photo metered off of the lightest gray in the cement, closest to Zone V.

52 Project-Zone System 3

Go out this weekend and experiment with the Zone System; you’ll enjoy the results.  Now, visit the the next photographer in the project blog circle, Carol Locey Photography serving the Greater Cincinnati, OH area.

January 29, 2016 - 8:43 am

Susannah - Great job! I love the execution of the Zone System!

January 29, 2016 - 2:16 pm

KellyM - Your images are perfect for explaining the process. :O)

January 30, 2016 - 3:23 am

Jodie - perfect image for explaining process, such a happy face

January 30, 2016 - 5:44 pm

Trina - What a happy dog!

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