Friday, October 3, 2014

DigPhotog: Controlling Light (F-Stops, Shutter Speed, ISO, etc.) (U6-P1) [VID] Fa14

As a photographer, your task is to control lightYou are a master of light.

When you turn that dial from "auto" to "manual", you are taking control of the light coming into your camera.  Two key ways of controlling the amount of light coming into your camera are by setting the f-stop and the shutter speed.

For a partial introduction to f-stops and shutter speed, check out the following video excerpt from Brian Ratty's video series (Digital Photography - The Camera (Tutorial DVD)). The videos are now a little dated, but still cover the basics well.

F-stops and shutter speeds are not the only ways you can control light.  You can adjust the ISO settings or use flash, for example.  You can adjust f-stops, shutter speeds, ISO, flash, etc. to get just the right amount of light into your camera -- that perfect exposure.

"Let's Get Techie" does a good job of adding some further details.  Note the exposure triangle.

There are apps that allow you to see the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO settings for your photographs.  If you recall, the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO data and other data (e.g., date, time, GPS location) is what is called EXIF data.  For android devices one EXIF viewer app is Simple Exif Viewer.  For iOS devices an EXIF viewer app is Exif Viewer. A Google search will also show EXIF viewers for laptops and desktops.

Use one of the EXIF viewers and check the f-stop, shutter speed and ISO settings for your photographs. See if the settings or values make sense.  For example, would an ISO setting/value of 800 for an indoor photo make sense?  Why?   Would a shutter speed of 1/2 second for a blurry sports photo make sense?  Why?

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