What is you procedure for taking a photograph?

Started 10 months ago | Questions thread
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LSUEngineer New Member • Posts: 2
What is you procedure for taking a photograph?


I'm new to photography and I have been reading about the fundamentals for the past couple weeks. I have a pretty good grasp of aperture, shutter speed, ISO, etc. My problem is that I'm getting mixed results and it feels like it is not only a lack of practice, but I'm also learning the camera and it seems as though I can't settle on a fixed procedure for common scenes. Maybe if I can get some advice about my everyday shooting situation, I can practice the procedure and then modify it for more challenging shots. It seems it would be helpful if you listed specifically what buttons and in what order you would perform them just so I can get a baseline for camera usage.

My camera is a Sony a7ii with 50mm lens. Let's say I'm outside taking a portrait style picture of my dog. I want to use aperture priority mode and keep everything else automatic. The dog is not moving very fast, but might turn it's head often. I also want to focus on the eyes.

1. Get into position and frame the photo the way I would like.

2. Set my aperture using a wheel on the camera while also pre-focusing.

3. Focus - Here is where I run into trouble. I have the options Wide/Zone/Center/Flexible Spot/Lock-on AF. The camera's auto Wide focus might focus on the snout instead of the eyes, so I want to use something else. I set Flexible Spot, but I find that fumbling with the buttons to move the focus area takes too long before the dog has turned its head. So I turn on Center focus, move the frame to the eyes, half-press the shutter to focus, then reframe the scene (is this even correct?).

4. At this point I would check the metering and maybe change this. I have the options Multi/Center/Spot... but at this point my fingers are already half-pressed buttons to lock the focus and I feel like I can't do any more other than to take the picture...

So, in this situation, what would you do/change?

Thanks for your help!

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Sony a7 II Sony FE 50mm F1.8
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