3 Digital Camera Settings to Take Better Photos

How do I take better photos…

with my DSLR camera? You might be surprised to hear the answer. Do you want to create beautiful, lasting memories of family functions, sporting events and other meaningful events in your family’s life? Simply knowing the tools at your disposal will help you take high-quality photos with that DSLR you’re keeping on auto. Here are 3 settings you need to know to take better photos.

1) What is aperture?

To put it simply, the aperture setting controls the amount of light being let into the image sensor of the camera. Think of it like your pupil, the bigger it gets the more light it lets in (that’s while when it’s bright out, your pupils get small, and when it’s dark, they appear much bigger.) Unlike your pupils, which automatically adjust to the light, you can manually control the aperture of your camera by changing what’s known as the f-stop. A low f-stop like 3.5 lets in more light, and a high f-stop like 22 lets in less. In addition, the aperture controls the depth of field of your image (how in-focus certain parts are). A low f-stop will produce a higher depth of field (great for close-ups of flowers!), and a higher f-stop will produce a crisper image (great for awesome landscapes!) See the examples below:

Low f-stop | Photo by H K on Unsplash

High f-stop | Photo by Rob Morton on Unsplash

Photo Experiment #1: 

Try turning your camera to aperture priority mode (A). This will allow you to test different f-stop settings without having to worry about anything else. With the camera on aperture priority mode, the other settings on the camera will auto-adjust. Give it a try and let us know how it goes in the comments!

2) What is shutter speed?

Shutter speed is the speed at which the shutter passes in front of the image sensor, thus determining how long the image sensor is exposed to light, measured in fractions of a second. A slow shutter speed lets in more light and allows for more motion blur. Sometimes this can have a cool effect like in the photo below.

Photo by Denys Argyriou on Unsplash

But, if you’d prefer to have a less blurred image, try using a faster shutter speed.

Photo by Mitchell Orr on Unsplash

For more tips, visit the B.Britnell Blog.

Photo Experiment #2: 

Turn your camera to shutter speed priority (S). Experiment with photographing moving objects. What happens when you change the speed?

3) What is ISO?

ISO is a digital setting that uses the camera’s software to boost the light in the image. And while lots of light is good, it’s important to use a high ISO sparingly, as it can cause the image to look grainy.

 

Read more and check out other educational images at ExposureGuide.com!

Photo Tip #3: 

Turn your camera to manual (or M). Experiment with all 3 of these settings at once and let us know what you came up with in the comments!

Looking to further your skills?

ENROLL NOW or LEARN MORE

in our Adult DSLR Photography class beginning October 14th!

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New Year’s 2017: Photography Classes for Adults, Programming and Web Design Classes in Westchester, NY

Adult classes in photography, website design using WordPress and computer programming are just a few of the classes offered at the Digital Arts Experience beginning in January 2017. The DAE is proud and excited to offer fun, engaging classes for adults as well as kids this year! Visit us for more info: thedae.com/adultclasses.

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