Shutter Speed, ISO & Aperture

After our project launch on Monday, Karl gave us a 10 minute tutorial on the basics of using a DSLR camera. Today there was a workshop with Adrain at 1pm on the same topic and once arriving home, I recapped everything by watching these two videos:

  • The ISO is about the sensitivity to light whilst taking the photo. A lower ISO gives you smoothness and richer colours.
  • The aperture is the control over the size of the iris in the lens, and it contributes to the photo’s depth of field. Phone cameras have a wide depth of field, so everything in the background and foreground is in focus.
  • Aperture is controlled by an F-stop number and the lower it is, the more open the iris is. For example, an F-stop of 1 or 1.5. The more open, the more shallow depth of field there is. More light means the background is more blurry. A higher F-stop produces a sharper background.
  • The shutter speed controls how long the film is exposed to light. A longer shutter speed of about 6 seconds is ideal to capture motion over a length of time, like a light trial in traffic overnight. Fast shutter speeds are best in sunny weather.




All three features of the DSLR camera must be used in perfect balance, as depicted in these diagrams, in order to produce the most satisfactory photograph.




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