No matter if you are just starting out or if you are a long-time veteran of taking photos — you are probably glued to the meter that’s typically at the bottom-center of your camera’s display screen. Hey, this thing was pretty good to get some aspects of exposure right, but its not the best tool you have in your camera (most likely).

What I use is a histogram, which most cameras have built in but not enabled by default. A histogram has specific strengths over your meter. First, there’s no guesswork as to where the data in your image is. You know whether your image has any blown out or total black portions. Second, a histogram will allow you to control your image better in camera. It seems funny to say, but having your image’s data look the same in the camera and in the editing booth is a great way to be.

For post-processing your images, having all of your data workable and also having your exposure just right will mean your images only turn out better.