Written by 9:53 am Camera and Photography, Photography Tips

Photography 101 (Basic Photography Tips to Learn By Photography Enthusiastic )

Photography 101 or simply the photography tips are absolutely crucial for those just getting into photography, like myself. When you are going to learn photography then you may feel like learning an entirely foreign language – not simply with terminology such as aperture and shutter speed but with storytelling through pictures as well. Photography tips serve as guides on the journey towards becoming better photographers – let’s discover why these are essential.

Exposure is the amount of light that hits your camera’s sensor. Film and sensors work in a logarithmic way, which means that for every doubling of exposure, the next stop is twice as bright as the previous. If you have ever used a slide projector, you have an idea of how this works. Slide projectors use bulbs to project the images from the film onto a screen. The bulbs get brighter or dimmer depending on how much light they need to produce to make the image look the same. It’s the same with your camera—it adjusts the amount of light that hits the sensor to create the same exposure.

Although your phone’s camera and mostly the latest DSLR cameras have this feature already built in these cameras can not make the artistic decisions that differentiate your photo from the crowd.

To understand in detail we can refer to the exposure triangle in photography;

Which consists of three main Factors

  1. Shutter Speed
  2. Aperture
  3. ISO
Photography 101-Exposure triangle Three factors affecting exposure
Photography 101-Exposure triangle Three factors affecting exposure

Photography 101 : Pillar no 1, Shutter Speed

Shutter speed is the first pillar in the photography 101 basics. It is defined as the length of time image sensor in a camera is exposed to the incoming light. In a standard DSLR When the photo button is pressed a mirror flips up and the light hits the Camera’s Image sensor instead of going into the view finder of the camera, after the light hits the sensor another door closes and the mirror comes back to its position. Faster this mechanism happens faster the shutter speed of the camera slower the mechanism slower the shutter speed of the camera.

Photography 101 : Mirror in front of the image sensor and light going into the view finder
Photography 101 : Mirror in front of the image sensor and light going into the view finder
Photography 101: Mirror in open position exposing the image sensor
Photography 101: Mirror in open position exposing the image sensor

Shutter Speed is measured in the fractions of a second. Means 1/250 shutter speed means the shutter mechanism is run within 250th of a second. There cameras in the market with shutter speed ranging from 30sec (available in bulb mode) to 1/8000.

When your camera is operated on different shutter speeds it gives access to different types of photography. For instance if you are looking for capturing short timed actions like a humming bird’s wings, which flaps its wings at 70 wingbeats per second; or you need to capture a mountain biker splashing through water lake; you need to use your camera at high shutter speeds.

Photography 101: Humming bird captured through high shutter speed camera
Photography 101: Humming bird captured through high shutter speed camera
Photography 101: High Speed Bike Ride Mountain biker Crossing with Huge Water Splash the moment captured through a high shutter speed camera
High Speed Bike Ride Mountain River Crossing with Huge Water Splash. Extreme Mountain Biking

On the other At longer shutter speed we can create some interesting effects where we want to show motion of the objects in the photo for instance we can show streaks of head and tail lights of cars passing through a night in Prague or a train passing at night time. This effect is mostly available in the cameras with bulb mode.

Light streaks created by traffic head and tail lights in Prague. Phot taken at longer shutter speed.
Photography tips. Light streaks created by a bullet train passing at night. Photo taken at longer shutter Speed
Photography tips. Light streaks created by a bullet train passing at night. Photo taken at longer shutter Speed

Photography 101: Pillar no 2 , Aperture

Photography 101: Adjusting Camera Lens aperture

Aperture is the size of the opening through which light comes into the camera and determines how much light comes into the camera and by increasing or decreasing the aperture of the camera we can determine which objects from the scene will be focused. For instance the if the aperture length is larger we can focus on the objects selectively like shown in the image below where just birthday girl and her cake is in focus at f/1.8.

Photography tips: Photograph taken at large aperture. Birthday girl blowing candles out.
Photography tips: Photograph taken at large aperture. Birthday girl blowing candles out.

By controlling the aperture we can control the exposure of the photo first thing is plainly simple is brightness how much wider the aperture is be brighter the photo. Depth of the field helps to create the burr effect, which is very popular among the photographers who love to take photos in portrait mode. We can also take sharp photos by using smaller aperture size.

Photography 101: Pillar no 3, ISO

While we are discussing Photography 101 and basic tips for photography ISO is a major factor to discuss. ISO Acronym stands for International Standards Organization but it does not refer to the organization exactly. Two standards ASA and DIN were merged into ISO standards in 1974. However, camera manufacturers have adapted ISO to a similar brightness level as the technology has changed and evolved. In photography, it means film sensitivity or how much sensitive the image sensor or the film is exposed to the light coming into the camera.

The most common values for ISO Speed are 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, and so on. You will notice each value on the ISO Speed scale is double the previous value. The image brightness also doubles in brightness with each value increase but this brightness comes at the cost of a decrease in the quality of the photograph taken. Sometimes this trade-off must be made when we are taking photos at low light levels and other exposure control methods are not helping For example increasing the aperture may increase the light intake but it will also make objects in depth of the image out of focus.

Otherwise, it is always recommended that you take photos at the Base ISO speed of your camera as at this setting your camera is set to give the best quality of image you can get.

How to select the best exposure setting in photography for beginners?

So what is the best settings for your DSLR when switching to manual settings because changing each settings for each of these three effects the results of other two settings. Best answer is to practice and check the results each time you take a photo you might have seen professional photographers also take many photos of same scene by changing the settings many times. Start by two settings to set at auto and one manual as most of the advanced cameras have this functionality. You will learn by experimenting in this way. Practice makes miracles happen.

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