Posts Tagged ‘exposure’

When Using Your Flash

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 [...]

“I’ll Fix It In…”

If you’ve got to “fix” your picture in photo-editing software, you’ve made a mistake.

Sunrises, Sunsets, Windows And Adding Light

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 [...]

A Better Way Than Bracketing

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.

Do You Own A Good Camera But Using It Badly?

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.
Introduction [...]

What Were You Thinking?

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 [...]

Now What?

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 [...]

Do You Know How To Meter?

You use your camera meter to evaluate the intensity, or brightness, of light.
You meter is located in your camera and chances are good that you have few metering patterns, or modes, to choose from.
Your metering mode has an area of influence that drives your exposure.
You meter is an evaluation tool while your exposure is used [...]

The “Priority” Exposure Modes

On your exposure mode dial there is an aperture priority mode and a shutter priority mode.
In aperture priority mode, you pick the aperture (f-stop) and your camera picks the shutter speed.
In shutter priority mode, you pick the shutter speed and your camera picks the aperture.
The problem with these modes is that, in terms of exposure, you wind [...]

You Can Work Any Camera

What if you were to borrow someone’s camera because you didn’t bring your camera to an event.
Could you work the camera to make the photographs that you wanted?
You could if you had a good foundation in the basics of photography.
You would dig into the camera settings and change the settings to suit your way of [...]

Night Photography Classes

I was recently asked if I teach night photography classes and I answered “yes, the classes that I teach in the evening start  at 6:30 pm and usually end at 9:30pm.”
I misunderstood the question. The question was about whether I taught a class that specialized in creating photographs at night.
Do you really need a special [...]

The Intentional Photograph

The composition of your photograph should be filled with intent.
If you, or your camera, are picking exposure settings in a haphazard manner, or based solely on the amount of light that you are working with, the composition of your photograph is lacking the visual depth that can only come with intent.
Everything from the choice of your lens to the  the exposure [...]

Night And Day And Flash

At night you may need a flash because you do not have enough available light to make a good exposure of your subject.
During the day you may need a flash  to add light to the darker areas of your subject.
Night or day, your flash is a valuable tool that can add light whenever and wherever you need [...]

Photography Is Hard Because It Is Easy

Photography is probably the easiest medium in which anyone can be competent.
Anyone can be a marginally capable photographer and produce a decent photograph.
The hard part of photography is developing a personal vision that is idiosyncratic.
The hard part of photography is separating yourself visually from the rest of the photographers who are making decent photographs.
Your photography has to become more than decent and has [...]

Just You And Your Camera Are Enough

You: A thoughtful and creative being looking for a way to express itself.
A Camera: A tool that records light that can be used as a means of personal expression.
When you learn the craft of photography and learn to use the camera in manual exposure mode you have all you need to create expressive photographs.
Sure, you might need a flash [...]

More Or Less

Photography is a thought process.
As a photographer you can think more or you can think less while creating your picture.
Put your camera in an automatic exposure mode and you think less.
Put your camera in a manual exposure mode and you think more.
You get out of your photography what you put into your photography. In this case more is more.
Make [...]

Staute of Liberty, Close-up, Up, Side-view, Liberty Island, New Jersey

Side-view, close up of the Statue of Liberty showing the book, crown and torch, Liberty Island, New York Harbor, Liberty Island, New Jersey. Liberty Island, once known as Bedloe’s Island is located on the New Jersey side of New York Harbor. (Sam D’Amico)
Click on image to:
View a larger version
License Use (Rights Managed Stock Photography)
Buy a [...]

Shedding Some Light On Metering And Exposure

The light meter on your camera measures the brightness of light.
Metering is an evaluation.
Exposure is how much light you allow to fall onto light sensitive material.
Exposure is a decision.
Metering and exposure are essential to getting the photograph that you want.
If your pictures are coming out to dark or too bright this indicates you should probably devote some time to [...]

Your Prescription For Better Photography

If I were to give you a prescription to improve your photography, and for you to improve as a photographer, here’s what it would be:

To make better pictures and to be a better photographer take at least one picture a day in fully manual exposure mode.
Take the recommended dose  at varying times of the day, in different locations and [...]

The Pop-Up Flash On Your Camera

The pop-up flash on your camera will help you to make better photographs and can be used by you to learn the basics of flash photography.
Just keep in mind a couple of things.

You need to be close enough to the subject that you want to light, but not too close or you’ll wash out your [...]

Backyard Fireworks, Sewell NJ

A daytime display of fireworks in the backyard of a home, Sewell, New Jersey. (Sam D’Amico)
Click on image to:
View a larger version
License Use (Rights Managed Stock Photography)
Buy a print

Want To make Better Pictures? Be Aware

At the core of of what you do as a photographer there are three things that need to be done to make a photograph.

Meter – Measure the brightness of light.
Make an exposure – Allow a specific amount of light to fall onto light sensitive material.
Focus – Focus light onto light sensitive material.

The first two you [...]

Are You Ready For The Darkroom?

My personal experience in learning photography has led me to believe that, before you venture into the darkroom, it makes more sense to learn the basics of photography first so you could produce properly exposed negatives. Without properly exposed negatives you’ve got nothing, to work with in the darkroom.

Same Picture, Different Photographers

Believe it or not this scenario isn’t as far fetched as you may think.
Imagine that you and a bunch of other photographers were standing side by side and were photographing the same thing.
You all had DSLR cameras. You all had your cameras set to the same auto-exposure mode and you all pressed your shutter at the same [...]