Hello Thursday!! How about some more photography tips?
Here is a picture right out of my camera.
Camera Settings (in manual): 1/200 f 2.5 ISO 1600 50 mm.
Why those settings? So glad you asked!
- ISO: 1600. It was inside, I was not very close to a window. So the ISO is on the high side. (and that is OK)
- f-stop 2.5…. normally I linger around 2.8 but I drop down a stop. You can see that Zooey’s face is in focus but her dress is not. If there would have been more background in the picture, instead of filling up the frame with he face, the background would have been blurry.
- Shutter Speed 1/200. Right before I snap my picture I use my Light Meter to pick my shutter speed. With an ISO of 1600 and f-stop of 2.5 my light meter was showing me that to be in the middle of the light meter, I needed my shutter speed to be on 1/200. That was an acceptable shutter speed to me. So I snapped the picture. If I didn’t like where the light meter was telling me to have my shutter, I would have gone back and adjusted my ISO. If I was at the top my ISO could go up, then I would have adjusted my f-stop down. The trick is to just travel around the triangle from ISO to f-stop to shutter until you find the right balance for the picture you are trying to take.
More on ISO. I adjust my ISO first before anything else. Why??? Because to me it is the easiest to guess what my setting should be. Memorize this:
- ISO 100 – outside and sunny
- ISO 200 – outside shade
- ISO 400 – outside deep shade or inside bright room (natural light. a.k.a windows)
- ISO 800 – inside not so bright
- ISO 1600 + – inside not much natural light at all.
In the picture above, I could have dropped my ISO down a bit, and had a slower shutter speed (although be aware of too slow of a shutter speed, it can cause blur if the subject or photographer moves!) The thing to remember the higher your ISO the more likely you are going to get grain/noise in your picture. Now sometimes you don’t have a choice (its either grain, or blur, or using the flash. I would rather have grain before blur. And I don’t use my flash) Sometimes you can fix that grain/noise during editing. Don’t be scared to up your ISO, but be aware of what a high ISO can do to quality of a picture.
Many times I will adjust my ISO as I carry my camera from inside to outside. Even when I am not actually shooting, but there might be the potential to shoot. That way it is ready to go when I want to snap a picture. I think ISO is the easiest manual setting to learn because you can just look around your environment and take an educated guess and most of the time you will guess right. Now, you might have to adjust it again before you snap the picture. But, follow the guide above and you will at least be in the ballpark before shooting.
Here is what the picture looked like with a little editing:
I added some exposure, black, clarity and vibrance in Lightroom to achieve the picture above.
For fun I also did a black and white version of the picture:
In this picture I also adjust the exposure slightly and clarity up. But I also adjusted the Fill Light setting to 39 and the Blacks setting to 18. (Also in Lightroom)
I would love to help you get better pictures with your DSLR! If you are local, I have started a Photo Coaching one-on-ones sessions under my photography business. If you are not local – well I have been kicking around the idea of an online type of workshop or coaching, I would love to know if there is any interest (leave me a comment). But until then, just leave questions for me in the comments section and I will try to answer them in my next photo tip post.
Happy Picture Taking!
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