When viewing a film or television production, it is often easy to assume that the two-dimensional images are a faithful reproduction of the original scene. There are many productions (e.g. news, current affairs, sports coverage, etc.) where the audience’s belief that they are watching a truthful representation unmediated by technical manipulation or distortion is essential to the credibility of the programme. But many decisions concerning exposure involve some degree of compromise as to what can be depicted even in ‘factual’ programmes. In productions that seek to interpret rather than to record an event, manipulating the exposure to control the look of a shot is an important technique.

As we have discussed in Colour temperature (page ...

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