Apeture and Shutter Speed

Started Mar 1, 2014 | Questions thread
WryCuda Veteran Member • Posts: 8,466
Re: Aperture and Shutter Speed

Aspiringtobe wrote:

The classes harped on full Manual and NO flash. So I have tried my best to stick to them, most of my pictures have been just portraits of my children and such. Which all come out awesome, but if I want to try and charge for photography I need a better understanding. As I said I've taken classes but they seem to confuse me on some points. I am definitely grateful for the advice and I am going to check settings on my camera and read some of the material mentioned.

I haven't been to camera classes, but I have been to quite a few training sessions over the years in connection with my profession. Often, the subject will be approached rather obliquely in an effort to get you thinking along different lies, or to extend your understanding in some way. A popular approach in many areas is to introduce the concept of a triangle to illustrate something. This is almost as irritating as the "Thinking outside the box" exercise, which is another old training stand-by.

"Going Manual" is in this category, and supposedly gives beginners a deeper understanding of exposure. It's rubbish, of course; five minutes should be enough to assimilate that. Add an understanding of ISO and you complete the "triangle" (another two minutes).

There's a carry-over here from learning to drive. It's commonly believed that learning on a manual transmission is the way to go, even if you are planning to drive an automatic. There's some validity in this argument, but it's hardly transferrable to photography. I'm old enough to have learnt on a non-synchro manual, BTW.

When I first handled a DSLR, I tried it on Auto for a while. Needing more control, I went to Program mode (balance between A and SS immediately selectable), where some other customisations were available. I now mostly shoot in A mode (landscape). Note that even in Manual mode, you have an exposure indicator to guide you, so why not set one parameter and let the camera do the rest? For holiday snaps and sports photography, you don't have time for manual.

Program mode adjustment of A and SS tells you a lot about two legs of the "exposure triangle". I'm rather derisive about that concept, because A, SS and ISO are linear functions, and nothing to do with triangles.

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