Exposure isn’t an easy part of photography, especially if you’re just starting to learn about it. Your camera has dozens of buttons and hundreds of menu options — how do you even begin to set everything correctly? But it’s not as bad as you might think. There are only two camera settings that affect exposure: shutter speed and aperture. These are also the two most important settings in all of photography. In this article, I’ll introduce shutter speed and aperture (as well as a third variable, ISO) and explain in depth how to use them properly. Once you master exposure, your photos will skyrocket in quality.
Everywhere in the world, across the course of a year, the sun will be below the horizon just about 50% of the time. Although it can take a while for sunset to fade away completely, it’s safe to say that we spend a huge portion of our lives under dark skies. Normally, nighttime isn’t something that people equate with being awake, of course, but landscape photographers are strange people. In fact, moonlight and the Milky Way can lead to some of the best photos you’ll take, and they are well worth exploring with your camera. In this article, I’ll go through the characteristics that make some lenses better than others for star and nighttime landscape photography.
As a photographer and a photography business owner, I go through a number of activities at the end of each year to close it out, just like many businesses do when performing year-end activities. These activities have become an essential part of my photography workflow, allowing me to continue using a very consistent and reliable method to not only store and archive my images, but also to be ready for future data growth and potential hardware changes. If you have not yet considered year-end activities for your photography, I would recommend to give the below article a read and see if it would suit your workflow. Basically, I have developed a set of procedures that I run on either December 31st, or the first few days of each new year to ensure that my data stays consistent, secure and fully backed up. Most of these procedures highlighted below are related to my current post-processing software of choice, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, but if you run any other software, you should be able to run through similar steps to make sure that you are set for another year of successful shooting.
Depth of field (DoF) is one of the most important concepts in photography. Understanding what DoF is, and knowing what factors affect it, are things all photographers should master. Many photographers know that you can control DoF by adjusting aperture. But did you know that DoF is influenced by other factors too? In this article, I want to explain in simple terms what depth of field is and talk about the ways you can control it.
Light, shapes, lines, forms — the foundations of photography. No matter what subjects you shoot, you’ll end up working with these features for every photo that you take. Architectural photography, though, takes it to another level, with its perfect geometrical lines and shapes that are hard to find anywhere else in the world. In this article, I will cover everything from indoor architectural photography to outdoor “urban landscapes” and cityscapes, including some tips and tricks that I use all the time in my own photos.
A quick note: Apologies that we have not posted an article this past week. Nasim and I have been in New Zealand since the beginning of December, and it has not been possible to publish anything without a reliable Internet connection. Our articles may still be sporadic until we get home at the end of December, so we appreciate your patience. For now, we have published our backlogged articles from recent days. Hopefully, the photos we bring back from this trip will be worth it!
There are many combinations of aperture, shutter speed, and ISO that will correctly expose an image. With all those combinations, which one is the right one? If you leave your camera in full program mode, your camera will pick a combination for you. However, letting your camera have complete control is not why you bought an expensive DSLR or mirrorless camera! Learning how to adjust the settings and modes on your camera before you click the shutter will give you the upper hand. You will end up capturing images creatively, rather than by chance. Read on to find out how aperture, shutter speed, and ISO affect the look and feel of a photograph and how to choose the best camera settings to take creative control of your images.
For many starting out in photography, the relationship between aperture, shutter speed, and ISO can be confusing. To further muddy the water, the terms ‘stop’ and ‘f-stop’ are often used interchangeably but refer to different things. In this article, I would like to take some of the mystery out of these concepts by talking about the exposure triangle and why it is important to understand for those who are starting out. Please keep in mind that the concepts in this article are oversimplified to make it easy for beginners to understand, especially when it comes to ISO.
With the arrival of the much-anticipated Canon 5D Mark IV, many photographers might be either moving up to, or upgrading their existing Canon 5D-line cameras to this latest and greatest tool. The 5D line has always been Canon’s stronghold for most types of photography, particularly because of its amazing low-light performance, reliable autofocus, superb ergonomics, solid build and overall stability, making it a preferred DSLR among most professionals. Due to the numerous buttons and the sophisticated menu system of the camera, understanding the functionality of the camera can be rather overwhelming for even intermediate-level photographers. To help guide our readers through these features and menus, we decided to share the settings our team has been using on the camera during the past 2 months while testing out the camera. Please keep in mind that the below information is provided as a guide for those that struggle with the camera. While this particular configuration has been working great for our needs, it does not mean that it is the only way to properly setup and configure the camera.
A lot of landscape photographers are interested in focus stacking — combining multiple images of the same scene, each focused at different distances, into a single photo. This is a useful tool to have at your disposal, since it lets you take pictures in more situations than you otherwise could. For example, if elements of your photo are very close to your camera, focus stacking may be the only way to get a sharp shot. Although I don’t use this technique for every photo, it’s something that I keep in mind when I’m taking pictures in challenging conditions. This article gives an overview of focus stacking for landscape photography, including step-by-step instructions on how to focus stack photos in Photoshop. All of these tips are also relevant for other types of photography, not just landscapes.
Landscape photographers often deal with the dilemma of choosing between different types and brands of neutral density and graduated neutral density filters for use in high-contrast situations such as sunrise and sunset, where their cameras might not have enough dynamic range to be able to capture the entire scene. While we are not going to go over each and every brand to see which one performs better, we do want to show the difference in sharpness between glass and resin filters. For this particular test, we used three 0.6 (2 stop) filters from three different manufacturers – NiSi (glass filter), Lee (resin) and HiTech (resin). The latter two are probably the two brands that are used the most among photographers in the field.