Nighttime meter reading for 8x10's : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Hello- This is going to be a very general question, but I'll try make it easy. I have been shooting many large format night shots and the question I have is for meter readings for far away shots using an 8x10. How can I get an accurate meter reading of a landscape far away(200-300yds) or across the river and it be the correct reading that I need? I have had my meter for a few years and it works perfectly with my 35mm's, but have never really used it for large format photography, plus for photographs that were centered far away. I do have three different pieces that fit on the meter, but am not sure what they are for. Does anyone know? If this is too general, just ask me any of the information that you need and I will try to fill you in better. Thank You

-- Sean McDonough (, May 12, 2002


Sean, i am not really sure what kind of meter you have , but seems like what you need is a spot meter. The spot meter will give you a 1 degree angle reading , allowing you to achieve a selective reading troghout the entire image. Seems like your meter attachments might have the capabilities to transform you meter in a spot meter, but of course this is only a wild guess.

If time is not an issue , i would also prepare for the shot by going phisically in the far away area of the image and having a thorough reading up close , then going back to the camera and taking the shot. Being nightime you probably won't have shifting of intensity in light .

-- domenico (, May 13, 2002.

Any kind of metering at night is difficult. You might see if you can find a Harris Photoguide for Xisting Light (copyright 1982, revised 1989). I don't know if they make them anymore. I bought mine in the 80's, but I still find it useful for difficult exposure situations. I would also recommend bracketing exposures, with a bias toward overexposure. You might consider learning how to develop by inspection.

-- Ed Buffaloe (, May 13, 2002.

Try this:

Any method that worked for you in 35mm should work in LF as well ... film is film. The above link is specific to night photography. Hope this helps.

-- Michael Mahoney (, May 13, 2002.

I'll agree with Mike; Just be aware of any reciprocity differences between films you haven't shot and those that you want to.

-- Wayne Crider (, May 13, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ