Exposure is subjective.
Overexposure is when your picture seems to bright to you.
Underexposure is when your picture seems to dark to you.
The right exposure is whatever you think the best exposure for your specific picture should be.
I think of overexposure and underexposure as negative terms when describing a picture. It means I missed the mark when [...]
When you work your camera in an automatic exposure mode you are taking pictures.
In an automatic exposure mode your camera picks an aperture, a shutter speed and an ISO for you, so you TAKE what you get as a photograph.
When you work your camera in fully manual exposure mode you are making pictures.
In fully manual [...]
You’ve got to start somewhere.
The place to start is to learn how to work your camera, preferably in manual exposure mode.
Learn to set your exposure by setting your aperture and shutter speed.
Learn to pick the right ISO based on the compositional outcome that you want.
Learn to focus by learning how to use the focusing modes [...]
During the Introduction Photography class we talk about three things that we often do as photographers with our cameras to create a photograph.
Metering: Using a light meter in our camera to measure the brightness of light.
Making An Exposure: Controlling the amount of light that we allow to fall onto light sensitive material.
Focusing: Using our lens [...]
When you make a picture in an auto exposure mode your camera will get you an average exposure based on whatever you are metering. Your picture may be good enough in terms of exposure but is probably lacking in the very thing that takes a picture beyond good enough; you, the photographer, are what’s lacking.
When you make [...]
Your exposure mode dial is usually found on top of your camera and is usually filled with letters and icons that allow you to pick how you want to make an exposure.
On a lot of cameras there are a lot of exposure modes to pick from.
Here are a few modes that I’m familiar with and [...]
If you give your photography the thought process that involves working your camera in fully manual exposure mode you’ll get a photograph that is thoughtfully composed and reflects you, the photographer.
If you give your photography the thought process that involves an automatic exposure mode you’ll get a photograph that lacks thoughtful composition and reflects your camera, a [...]
Your camera primarily does three things to create a photograph
Your camera focuses light (This is really done with your lens).
Your camera measures light.
Your camera exposes light sensitive material to light.
If you’ve been working your camera in an automatic exposure mode your camera has been doing these things for you.
If you want to create photographs that are [...]
What do we need to pay to create GOOD photographs and yet cost us nothing out of our pockets?
I was asked about why I don’t offer darkroom skills, and/or photo editing software, instruction as a part of my workshops. If the topic of photo-editing software or darkroom work comes up, we’ll discuss it, but it is not a main topic.
I think that you can consider photo-editing software a digital darkroom. Whatever I’ve written [...]
Shutter speed is a part of exposure.
You can set your shutter speed to vary the amount of light that falls onto your light sensitive material of choice.
Longer/slower shutter speed = more exposure = brighter picture
Shorter/faster shutter speed = less exposure = darker picture
Sometimes when I give a review during my photography classes, photographers get the shutter speeds [...]
When we begin to learn about the craft of photography we may begin to think that that we are no longer paying attention to composition.
Instead of simply framing what we want in our picture we’re now thinking about focusing, metering, exposure and more.
While attentively framing what we want in our photograph (content) is important, framing and the placement of content [...]
As a photographer I think that there are three things that you mainly do with your camera to create a photograph.
You focus light (focusing), you measure light (metering) and you let a specific amount of light fall onto light sensitive material (making an exposure).
If you’ve been working your camera in an automatic mode your camera has been doing all [...]
Your photograph should be all about what you want as a photographer, not about what you think someone else will like or not like and it is not about what your camera does in auto-mode.
If you’ve been making your pictures from the perspective of what someone will like or not like, then you probably haven’t been making pictures [...]
Your camera meter measures the intensity (brightness) of light. Nothing more, nothing less.
This measurement of light is expressed as…
Our meter allows us evaluate what we’re photographing, while our chosen exposure based on our metering allows us to get the visual information that we want in our picture.
All of these changes have a compositional outcome. If you are changing these things and not…
There are primarily two things to consider.
The light coming from your flash.
The light coming from whatever you are photographing(your subject).
The light coming from your flash is an illuminating or transmitting light source.
The light coming from your subject is a reflective light source and is being illuminated by by whatever transmitting light source is available at the [...]
If you’ve got to “fix” your picture in photo-editing software, you’ve made a mistake.
Have you ever photographed someone in front of a sunrise, sunset or window and the person you’re photographing comes out dark?
The issue is that the person you are photographing is much darker than the brighter area in back of them.
You should base your exposure on the bright area, this is best done working in manual exposure mode in [...]
Bracketing may be fine for static subjects, but if you are photographing things in flux, you’ve got one chance to get the right exposure.
If you own a camera that has a manual exposure mode option, but are using it in auto-exposure mode, you’re not realizing the full potential of your camera or the full potential of you as a photographer.
Getting to know how to use your camera in manual mode opens the door to your full potential as a photographer.
I pose that question a lot to the participants during week four of the Introduction To Photography class that I teach in Washington DC.
Since photography is a thought process that involves decisions of exposure, metering, focusing, framing, etc I want to know the thought process that went into creating the photograph.
It’s good to hear that [...]
You’ve taken an Introduction to Photography class to learn to use your camera and to learn the basics of photography.
You’ve learned to work your camera in manual exposure mode.
You understand how to control basic composition with your aperture, shutter speed and ISO.
You use your camera meter to evaluate your subject to get the exact exposure [...]