Understanding to read an image histogram is a crucial skill in digital photography. It will not only help you capture better exposed images, but also correct badly exposed ones in Photoshop, Lightroom and other similar software. If you feel its complicated don’t just dive in and soon you will have a deeper understanding of what histograms are all about and how you can use them. (**article updated on 12/9/13**)
Before you start watching the videos let’s first get a clear idea of what histograms represent. Wikipedia has a very clear definition for that:
“An image histogram is a type of histogram that acts as a graphical representation of the tonal distribution in a digital image. It plots the number of pixels for each tonal value. By looking at the histogram for a specific image a viewer will be able to judge the entire tonal distribution at a glance.
Image histograms are present on many modern digital cameras. Photographers can use them as an aid to show the distribution of tones captured, and whether image detail has been lost to blown-out highlights or blacked-out shadows.
The horizontal axis of the graph represents the tonal variations, while the vertical axis represents the number of pixels in that particular tone. The left side of the horizontal axis represents the black and dark areas, the middle represents medium grey and the right hand side represents light and pure white areas. The vertical axis represents the size of the area that is captured in each one of these zones. Thus, the histogram for a very dark image will have the majority of its data points on the left side and center of the graph. Conversely, the histogram for a very bright image with few dark areas and/or shadows will have most of its data points on the right side and center of the graph.”
Let’s get started!
Exposure – Let’s Get it Right!
Photography is fun, but getting the correct exposure sometimes can be challenging. Without correct exposure, the photos may be either too dark or too bright, and may fail to present the desirable depth of field to viewers. Setting the correct exposure for your camera should not be a daunting task. There are several useful tips mentioned in our video clip that will assist you in finding the desirable exposure settings on filmmaking or still photography.
Photography Histograms Explained
Histograms are the only way when shooting to get an accurate representation of your exposure. Without it, you could look at your screen and think your photo is exposed properly but then look at them on your computer later and realize everything was underexposed or overexposed.
How to Use The Histogram
Photoshop Histogram and Exposure by Jonathan Kingston
Photoshop – Levels And Histogram
In this tutorial we will be explaining what a Histogram is and how to use the Levels adjustment option. With Levels, you can adjust the highlights, midtones, and shadows of the image. By understanding how to read the Histogram, you will be able to make the correct adjustments to either all 3 primary colors (RGB) or to only the reds, greens or blues. Along the way we will be showing you some important tips and tricks on how to make your image look great.
Color Correction Using Photoshop Levels
How to easily do color correction using the Photoshop Levels command in 1 minute or less. How to improve color contrast for all color channels separately. Easy to understand Photoshop tutorial.
Hope you enjoyed this article and the videos, and now have a better understanding of histograms and how to use photoshop levels for basic image corrections! If you have any questions feel free to comment below!