Starting to use a DSLR #photography

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When you first start to use a DSLR all the settings can be confusing and you have to get used to them slowly so you set the camera quickly without thinking too much about it.

The first thing to learn is how to arrange your shot to get a nicely composed shot with lots of interest and depth.


In this shot I have the canal going away from us and the tree provides some perspective when compared to the building in the background.

In this shot, I have a clear subject with a nice backdrop to it. It was very bright sunshine in the early afternoon. This shot would have been better later in the afternoon for a warmer light. I often prefer a white cloudy sky for a diffused light with fewer shadows.

Why choose a DSLR?


Why use the manual settings?

You can start off using the 'scene' modes such as landscape and portrait and they will give you good pictures. However to get sharp images with a wide aperture it is a better idea to select a lens with a wide aperture and set the aperture manually. The widest aperture on a lens is usually printed on the lens itself. The widest aperture changes as you zoom in on zoom lenses but is fixed on a prime lens.

This image was shot with an aperture of F 3.2 and this side of the plate is more in focus than the far side. Wide apertures are good for food photography and macro photography generally. I shot this with a 35 mm prime lens.


Low light

Using manual settings can also help you in low light. Try using shutter priority and set your shutter speed on 1/100 of a second and allow the camera to set the aperture. If the aperture is really wide, say wider than F8 then you can compensate for the low light by increasing your ISO.

It can be fun learning to use a DSLR and they are the cameras favoured by professionals.

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