Exposure Reference Sheets

A feature designed to close the gap between exposures and scans.

When shooting film, your negatives are your road map to understanding the relationship between your exposures and your scan results. Our goal? To provide a tool to help you better understand why you got the scans you did and how you might shoot differently (or the same) in the future to get different (or similar) results.

Paige Mercer Portra 400 Exposure Reference Sheet
Matoli Keely Portra 400 Exposure Reference Sheet

What are Exposure Reference Sheets?

Exposure Reference Sheets provide a thumbnail of each frame, allowing you to clearly and easily see how you exposed your film. They tell you what you need to know about your shooting to help you understand why you are getting the results you are.

Not only can they give you a heads up about possible issues like sticky shutters or base fog, but depending on the camera you are shooting, you might even be able to read each frame’s exposure data on 120!

How to Read Your Exposure Reference Sheets

Exposure reference sheet guide. Once you download your exposure reference sheets, zoom in to read exposure data (On PC logo key and plus sign (+). OR On Mac command key and plus sign (+))

Download our Exposure Reference Sheet Guide for Portra400

Exposure Reference Sheets show a variety of information from exposures to camera issues.

The exposure of each frame can be seen in its density level:

  • Frames that appear light represent overexposure.
  • Frames that appear dark represent underexposure.

To help you further understand your exposures, refer to the exposure data (if your camera imprints it). Your Exposure Data includes information such as:

  • Shutter speed
  • Aperture value
  • Exposure mode
  • Exposure compensation
  • Lens type
  • Film size: 120 or 220
  • Film Stock

Exposure data imprint

Cameras that imprint exposure data include

  • Contax645
  • Pentax645Nii
  • Pentax645N
  • Mamiya 645AF(D) series

The next thing to look for is any camera or film issues including:

  • Advancement issues
  • Light leaks
  • Sticking shutter
  • Base fog

Where do I find my Exposure Reference Sheets?

  • Exposure Reference Sheets are provided for every roll for Signature Process + Scan and can be found within your order’s Box.com folder.

Exposure Reference Sheets Help You Shoot Smarter

...but don't just take our word for it.

“When I first started shooting film I didn't like my results. But thanks to PhotoVision’s Exposure Reference Sheets, I soon realized that I was not exposing my film properly. What a game changer this tool has been.”

“One of my favorite things about PhotoVision is that they truly want to help you learn + master your craft. With every order, they always include Exposure Reference Sheets, which is a game changer for me! No longer do I have to question what happened when a film scan comes back . . . I can easily look at the Exposure Reference Sheet of my negatives and see my exposures, what film stock I used, my aperture and my shutter speed—which is extremely helpful!”

“One of the reasons why I absolutely love PhotoVision is because they give you Exposure Reference Sheets with your scans so you can see the data and settings of your exposures. Having my Exposure Reference Sheets when I receive my scans allows me to answer a lot of questions instead of having to call the lab every time. When you are learning film photography you will realize that looking at your negatives will tell you so much information and will really help you understand film.”

Level up in your photography.

Give our Exposure Reference Sheets a try when you order Signature Process + Scan.

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