By now, you should have switched from shooting in automatic to shooting in manual mode. Are you ready to master the art of adjusting your exposure?
According to the ever trusted Wikipedia, exposure refers to the amount of light per unit area reaching a photographic film or electronic image sensor, as determined by shutter speed, lens aperture and scene luminance.
In my words, it’s simply the degree of lightness or darkness in an image determined by the shutter speed, ISO and aperture. When an image is too bright, it’s said to be overexposed. When its too dark, it’s underexposed. The shutter speed, ISO, and aperture all change the amount of light let into the camera.
This controls the length of time light enters your camera.
Therefore, the slower your shutter speed, the brighter the image, the faster the shutter speed, the darker the image.
Fast shutter speeds come in handy when you’re taking action pictures such as a golden retriever running across the park or Usain Bolt dashing for the finish line.
Slow shutter speeds are usually used in situations whereby there isn’t enough light in the scene. This is called long exposure – you are exposing your camera to more light. Get it? In order to get clear picture here, your camera has to be mounted on a sturdy tripod. why? Because of the slow shutter speed, you hand will shake, machine the picture blurry.
Look at these 2 images. Which one uses a slow shutter speed? And which one was taken with a fast shutter speed?
Wikipedia says an aperture is a hole or an opening through which light travels. More specifically, the aperture and focal length of an optical system determine the cone angle of a bundle of rays that come to a focus in the image plane.
That’s long. Aperture is the way your camera opens up to more light. It’s usually measured in f stops
There are 2 cool things about your aperture
- Instead of the higher your aperture, the brighter your picture, it’s the higher your aperture, the darker your picture. The lower your aperture, the brighter your picture. Why is it measured like this, I have no damn clue. The inventors were probably confused. To illustrate, an f1.8 would be brighter than an f8.
- The lower your aperture, the shallower your depth of field i.e. there are less objects in focus. Similarly, the higher you aperture, the deeper your depth of field i.e.there are more objects in focus.
This should be your last resort when trying to balance the exposure of your image. I’ll explain.