Manual Photography

So, I’m sorry to those of you who really have no interest in photography, but this week’s post is going to be a rundown on how to use manual on your camera. Hopefully these tips are helpful to those of you who are interested in knowing more about your camera. We are also going to include some of our favorite equipment and resources of photography!

There are three aspects of manual. ISO. Shutter speed. Aperture (AKA F/stop). It will take a little to understand how to use these aspects together to create better pictures, but in the end you will be happier! Since I have learned how to use manual, my camera almost never changes off of the “M” on the dial. If I do switch it back to automatic I am always disappointed. So we will dive into these definitions and how they work together.
If you aren’t sure how to adjust the settings, consult your camera’s manual.

ISO- the sensitivity to light of the film in a camera.

I kind of think of ISO as less important than the other two, but it is still very key to getting a great picture. You have probably seen the ISO on your camera. You can choose from a series of numbers. Most camera’s start at 100 and have a variety of ranges. Mine goes up to 25600. Basically, the brighter your surroundings, the lower your ISO should be. Indoors I usually have mine around 400, depending on how well lit the house is. Outside I generally keep it at 100 unless it’s evening and getting dark. Always opt for a lower ISO. If it’s too high, the picture could get grainy. But I have had times when I had to jack it up to 6400 or higher.

Shutter Speed- speed at which the shutter of the camera closes.

Shutter speed is in fractions, like 1/80, 1/200 etc. If your shutter speed is set high, like 1/1600, the shutter will close really fast, not letting much light in. If it’s low, like 1/25, the shutter closes slowly, allowing a lot of light in. You should be able to tell that in a dark setting, the shutter speed should be low, and in a bright setting, it should be high. This is the setting I change the most. I generally set my ISO and f/stop and then adjust the shutter speed so the picture looks like I want it to.

Aperture (f/stop.)- opening of a lens through which light passes.

The aperture is expressed in numbers like F3.2, F8, etc. The lower your f/stop the less of your image is in focus. So if you are taking portraits, and just want your subject in focus, but the background blurry, take your f/stop down. Just be sure you don’t leave important details out of focus. A lot of portrait lenses have the ability to have the aperture as low as F1.8. This will not leave much in focus. But if you are taking pictures of a landscape, you will want the entire picture in focus, so go with a higher aperture.

A Few of our Favorite Things:

Favorite Lenses:
Both Damarus and I totally love our 50mm lenses and highly recommend them if you are into portraits. It has a really low f/stop and does really well at getting a great bokeh effect. Recently I invested in a 17-50mm lens and am very impressed! It is categorized as a wide-angle lens, but it also works great for portraits, having a low f/stop as well. So now I have some competition for my 50mm!

Favorite Developer:
Definitely Mpix. They have super high quality prints for a very reasonable price!

We like making photography fun, so here are some things we like to use to add glamour to our hobby!
Backpack camera bag. Neither of us actually have one of these, but a great friend of mine does and she loves it! It is definitely on my wishlist!
Lace camera strap. I was gifted one of these and love it! There are also lots of more Practical straps for everyday use.
Camera tshirt. Super cute and perfect for gifts for photographer friends!
Lens Thermos. Another wonderful gift idea for photographers!

Written by Ginger

Published by Pursuing Our Purpose

Welcome! We are two sets of sisters that are best friends; longing to live the purpose and design that God has specially planned for every one of us. We would love to have you come along with us as we learn what it looks like to be a true woman glowing with an inward beauty that comes from our Heavenly Father.

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