Backcountry Gallery -Stop Struggling With Shadow Recovery!

Ever notice that when you try to preform shadow recovery / pull shadows during post processing that sometimes it works and sometimes it’s a disaster? Did you know your shadow recovery success is directly related to your choices in the field? 

In this video, we’ll talk about what shadow recovery actually does, why those areas get noisier, how to tell how noisy they’ll get, and – most importantly – what you can do in the field that will make a difference back home on the computer. 

This 7 minute video will change how you think about shadows, ISO, and it’ll modify your field technique forever! Jump in!

(Note – at the 3.42 mark there’s a typo in the note above ISO equivalency that says 6000 that should say 16000 – I missed the “1” when I was making the caption.)

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PS – If you enjoyed this post, I think you’ll REALLY like my e-books and video workshops! Thousands of pages and hours of videos filled with tips, tricks, and techniques – all my best content! Check ’em out – click here (hey, it’s free to look).

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Charles AryPierrreMatt AdamsSteve PerryMary Jeanne Tash Recent comment authors
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Charles Ary
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Charles Ary

Thank you for debunking the belief that raising ISO increases the sensitivity of the sensor, when it really just amplifies the base signal.

Pierrre
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Excellent reminders!

Mary Jeanne Tash
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IN this video you made so much sense relating it to static on the radio. Thanks

rudolf
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again I really like your short lessons. Even when working with Nikon since ages I still learn from you. Thanks a bunch, and keep on, your audience is very thankful!

PaulB
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PaulB

Speaking of signal to noise ratio, the new music is a vast improvement.
Oh, yes, and the content remains first rate.
Thanks

PaulB
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PaulB

Speaking of signal to noise ratio, the new music is a vast improvement.
Oh, and the content is first rate, as always.
Thanks

Matt Adams
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Hi Steve, I’ve been watching on YouTube for a few months, your videos are highly informative and enjoyable. thank you for sharing your great knowledge and experience. There was just one thing I didn’t understand in your Stop Struggling with Shadow Recovery video. You made a comment about the Nikon D5 and D6 being different in terms of ISO and shadows than other cameras, I don’t understand what you meant. Could you please expand on that? I have always worked on the theory that most of the data captured by the sensor is in the highlights, and to a lesser… Read more »

Bruce
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Bruce

Excellent video. With the D3 I found that -1.0 EV resulted in the worst image quality but also that more often than I would have expects, a +1.0 EV image provided better color fidelity than a 0.0 EV image. This was with the 13 years old D3 sensor so not directly applicable to newer sensors and AD processors but it is worth testing as the time needed and cost is trivial in the overall scheme of things.

Petit
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Hello Steve ! Here is Francois from France country. Like every one of your videos, this is another brilliant video. Very clear explanations, wonderdul examples with the volume of loudness. every time great to hear you, every time we learn something! thanks !

Joe
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Joe

As always, a great presentation with useable information. Thanks Steve!

Steven Kersting
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Nice Job. Slight error/typo on the backlit bird recovery (it’s ISO 16,000 equiv).

It’s all really just about *light*; because light equals data. Darker shadows contain less light/data, midtones contain more light/data, avoiding shadows means more light/data, and larger image areas/sensors receive/record more light/data. And cropping is detrimental because it is discarding light/image circle/image area… it doesn’t really matter if the cropping is done by using a smaller sensor, or in post.

Lew
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Lew

Great information Steve. Sounds to me like in the field, I should consider bumping up ISO last in the order of ways to obtain correct exposure. Also, how effective would it be in scenarios of back light and/or dark toned subjects to shoot (RAW) a stop or two under correct exposure at the limits of effective shutter speed and aperture when a higher shadow push might be anticipated?