Thursday, July 18, 2013

Self Taught Photography: Shutter Speed and Aperture

How to Get Perfect Exposure:


Perfect exposure is the right aperture with the right shutter speed.

To a beginner photographer, such as myself, this can be very confusing. What is aperture and shutter speed? Why are these important? Surely automatic is just as good, right?

Actually, that’s inaccurate. If you want to advance in photography, to get the most out of your Digital SLR camera, and benefit from the creative possibilities, you must take the time to understand these two settings. After you read this and start practicing you will soon wonder why you were ever so intimidated by the manual mode.

Understanding Aperture and Shutter Speed is easier than you think.

Aperture is the hole that light has to pass through to form an image. It helps to control your depth of field and focus in your shot.

Shutter speed is how quickly your shutter closes or the amount of time the light is allowed to pass through the hole.

The faster it closes the sharper your picture will be, allowing you to capture images of fast moving objects. For examples; sports photography, children playing, shots of animals who won’t stay still, etc.

The slower it closes the more blurry it will be. This is because when your shutter is closing slower it gives your object a chance to move slightly in that time, making them appear blurry in your photograph. Perhaps you want an object or motion to appear blurry and so you will choose a slower shutter speed.

The two of them together.

Aperture and Shutter Speed are the two most important functions to learn when first learning photography. Once you have learned to control them, all other aspects of photography will become much easier to understand.

If you adjust either the aperture or shutter speed, you must adjust the other to compensate for the increase or decrease in light. If you don’t your picture may appear either underexposed (too dark), or overexposed (too light).

Here is a simple chart to help get you started:

Shutter Speed      Aperture

100                         F16
125                         F11
250                         F8
500                         F5.6
1000                       F4
2000                       F1.8

This chart is just a simple starting point. To get the right exposure you have to play around with your camera and figure it out yourself. When shooting in different lighting, you have to adjust your shutter speed and aperture to capture enough light.

The best way to learn anything is with practice! As I am currently doing myself!

What advice to you have for using shutter speed and aperture?


P.S. These are lessons that I was taught at D3 Artworks Inc.

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