Friday, May 28, 2010

Photography 101

In our May Issue, one of our wonderful photographers wrote a great article on how to make your photography better. Here is an excerpt from her article.

With summer vacation just around the corner, you’ll certainly want to capture those moments on film. Here, Tennessee photographer Sarah Dobbins shares her expert tips on how to get to know your camera and snap the best shot.
Text Sarah Dobbins | PHOTOGRAPHY Sarah Dobbins

Over the past decade, digital photography has slowly begun to eclipse film photography as the medium of choice for beginner and professional photographers alike. One benefit of digital photography to the beginner is the ability to practice, practice, practice—and not pay a fortune for film and developing. Another advantage is the instant-gratification peek at the shot you just took, and the chance to experiment with settings and techniques and see the results right away. Here are some quick tips to get the most out of your digital SLR (single-lens reflex) camera:

Learn the basics. Get a good grasp on the three big settings you can control to change the look of your picture: ISO, shutter speed and aperture.
ISO: Similar to film speed, ISO reflects how sensitive your camera sensor is to light. Just like with film, a lower number is for brighter light. A higher number is for more dim light.
Shutter speed: This number is the length of time your shutter is open to capture your subject. A fast shutter speed will freeze motion; a slow shutter speed will cause any moving object to be blurred.
Aperture: How wide your lens opens affects the amount of light that enters your camera, and also can make your background blurred or sharp. A low number (wide aperture) gives you a lot of blur; a high number (narrow aperture) will cause more things to be in focus.
There are many resources to learn more about ISO, shutter speed and aperture, and how these settings interact with and affect each other; oftentimes your camera’s manual is a great place to start! Even so, one of the best ways to learn how these factors affect your photos is to get some hands-on experimentation. Practice in a controlled setting—in a bright, evenly lit room, for example—and see how changing these settings affects your final photo.

TIP: ISO 100, f/3.5, 1/320s Widening your aperture gives you a blurred background—and a creative kick to the standard portrait!

For more tips and amazing photography from Sarah pick up our May issue, out now!


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