What Is a Light Meter and How Is It Used When Taking Photographs?

A ‘light meter’ is a handheld device that used measure or ‘meter’ light. A light meter can read the ambient light in a scene, or the direct light from a light source and calculate the correct shutter speed and aperture values required to capture an accurate exposure. These days nearly all cameras have built in light meters and a number of metering ‘modes’  to calculate exposure settings. A handheld light meter might be used when shooting with older photography equipment or when scouting a location before shooting to plan what lighting equipment will be needed for a photoshoot.