Using Backlight Correction

Dec 30, 2011

Spring is finally here, bringing spring flowers with it. Many of you would love to shoot these attractive flowers. When using a camcorder to film spring flowers, especially blossom on cherry trees, for example, your lens will often be facing the sky.

Jan 12, 2011

A home camcorder is usually set to auto exposure and when its lens faces the sky it automatically reduces exposure to an appropriate level. When this happens, the flowers or blossom you wanted to film will come out too dark, resulting in images that are completely different from those seen with the naked eye.

The video above shows the cherry blossom and scenery in the Children’s Grand Park in Seoul, taken with an HMX-H300. You can see that the video includes the sky without becoming too dark. This was not done by manually adjusting the exposure. All we did was use the backlight correction button as necessary.

The backlight correction button is useful when the background is brighter than the subject. Use this button when the subject is standing under a bright sky or in front of a window. It can also be used when there is a bright light or a reflective material such as snow is in the background behind the subject. If you filmed scenes like these with the camera in auto mode, either the subjects would come out very dark or the whole frame would be dark. Using the backlight correction button enables you to get brighter images. To help you understand this, the video footage and stills below show the results when the HMX-H300 backlight correction function was on and off.

Backlight Correction Function Off

Backlight Correction Function On

They show that the spring flowers and sky look very different depending on whether the backlight correction function is on or off. Please note that if you use the backlight correction function when there is no backlight, the camera’s exposure will be higher than necessary and subjects will look too pale. When shooting in normal conditions after using the backlight correction function, always check its icon is no longer displayed on the LCD screen. In addition to shooting spring flowers, the backlight correction button is useful for shooting people outdoors. Try experimenting with it, depending how intense the light is behind the subject, to improve your photography.