6 Tips for Consistent Metering

With so many sources of varying information out there, how do you decipher what the best metering technique is? After hundreds of thousands of rolls, we have learned that keeping it simple is your best bet for consistent, accurate exposures: ⁠

Use a Handheld Meter.

Handheld light meters allow you to accurately read the amount of incoming light hitting your subject.⁠

Bulb + Placement.

Where you place your light meter in relation to your subject is important. Place your meter directly in front of your subject, bulb out, facing directly toward where you will be standing when you shoot.⁠

Stretch Out Your Arm.

And stand to the side of your meter to avoid bouncing any reflective light off of yourself, which would affect the meter reading.⁠

Meter Frequently.

Light changes constantly. Meter frequently to ensure consistent exposures. Consistent exposures leads to consistent scans—and allow your film to move through the lab quicker!⁠

Can't Meter Your Subject Directly?

Is your subject too far away? Not a problem, as long as you and your subject are in the same light, simply reach your meter high above your head pointed bulb out away from your subject and boop take a meter reading.⁠

Test Your Meter.

Did you know most light meters aren't perfectly calibrated correctly? In fact, it's common for them to be off slightly, and you may need to compensate accordingly!

Here's an easy way to test:⁠

💡 Set your ISO to 200. ⁠

💡 On a clear day in the mid to late afternoon, take a reading (bulb out) in open shade.⁠

💡 Your meter should read f/4 at 125. ⁠

💡 If it doesn't, calculate the difference and compensate accordingly for future shoots!⁠

Recommended Light Meters.

We like the Sekonic L-358 or Gossen DigiPro F2.⁠

Do you have questions about metering? Don't hesitate to give us a call (503) 588-3686.