1. Unit 57: Photography and Photographic Practice Terminology (P1, P2, M1, M2)Term Explanation of term e.g. what it is usedfor / the effect it has on your imagesExamplesShutter Speed In photography and digital photography theshutter speed is the unit of measurementwhich determines how long shutter remainsopen as the picture is taken. The slower theshutter speed, the longer the exposure time.The shutter speed and aperture togethercontrol the total amount of light reachingthe sensor. Shutter speeds are expressed inseconds or fractions of a second. Forexample 2, 1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60,1/125, 1/250, 1/500, 1/1000, 1/2000,1/4000, 1/8000. Each speed incrementhalves the amount of light.ISO In Digital Photography ISO measures thesensitivity of the image sensor. The sameprinciples apply as in film photography – thelower the number the less sensitive yourcamera is to light and the finer the grain.Higher ISO settings are generally used indarker situations to get faster shutter speeds(for example an indoor sports event whenyou want to freeze the action in lower light)– however the cost is noisier shots. I’llillustrate this below with two enlargementsof shots that I just took – the one on the leftis taken at 100 ISO and the one of the rightat 3200 ISO (click to enlarge to see the fulleffect).
2. Aperture & Depth offield (F stop)The depth of field does not abruptlychange from sharp to unsharp, butinstead occurs as a gradual transition. Infact, everything immediately in front ofor in back of the focusing distancebegins to lose sharpness — even if thisis not perceived by our eyes or by theresolution of the camera.Aperture is referred to the lensdiaphragm opening inside aphotographic lens. The size of thediaphragm opening in a camera lensREGULATES amount of light passesthrough onto the film inside the camerathe moment when the shutter curtain incamera opens during an exposureprocess. The size of an aperture in a lenscan either be a fixed or the mostpopular form in an adjustable type (likean SLR camera). Aperture size is usuallycalibrated in f-numbers or f-stops.Automatic Exposure Automatic exposure is an automateddigital camera system that sets theaperture and/or shutter speed, basedon the external lighting conditions forthe photo. With beginner-level digitalcameras, photographers usually canselect one of three different AE modes.Aperture priority allows thephotographer to set the aperture value,and the digital camera then determinesthe shutter speed. This is called a semi-automatic exposure. Shutter priority
3. allows the photographer to set theshutter speed, and the digital camerathen determines the aperture setting.This also is called a semi-automaticexposure. Program mode is a fullyautomatic mode, where the camera setsshutter speed and aperture. This modesometimes is called Program AE.
4. Manual Exposure This is the cool kid’s manual setting, as it gives you100% control of all three functions, shutter speed,aperture and ISO. There are no set rules with howyou adjust these settings, but here’s how I do it.First, I set the ISO. Typically, you can set your ISOand leave it for an entire shoot. Unless there’s adramatic change in the available light, (you goinside, or step outside) you can set it and forget it.Like I said earlier, you typically want your ISO aslow as possible. If you’re outside in the sun,there’s no reason to go above the lowest setting.This will keep the noise to a minimum within yourshots.This leaves shutter speed and aperture for you toadjust from shot to shot. Typically I set these twoin a somewhat middle of the road position just sothe shot is exposed properly. I then set either myaperture or shutter speed to where I want it andadjust back the other to maintain properexposure.How I determine shutter speed and aperturedepend on what I’m shooting, and what I want toget out of the shot. If I’m shooting a waterfall, Illwants a longer shutter speed to smooth out thefalling water, so Ill compensate by decreasing theaperture. If I’m shooting a football game, Ill wantsto freeze the action. I can do this by opening theaperture as wide as possible, and decreasing theshutter speed as low as I can.Now, if you don’t want to take the completeplunge to full manual, most cameras come withtwo other partial manual modes, which allow youto adjust two of the three settings, and thecamera will automatically determine the optimumsetting for the third depending on the light. Whilethese work, it still requires the camera guess whatyou want out of your image, and it may not resultin the exact exposure you’re looking for.
5. Colour Balance Getting the color right can be the most difficultpart of photo editing but a little knowledge of howthe colors are made will make this much easier.On the right we have a color wheel to helpillustrate the concepts that you need to grasp.All colors are made from three primary colors -red, blue and green. Forget what you learned inArt at school we are now dealing with light notpigments.Where the three colors overlap in the middle ofthe color wheel we get a neutral gray (somewherebetween black and white depending on theintensity of the colors). I have faked it here slightlyfor the purpose of illustration.Where two of the colors overlap they form othercolors known as subtractive primary colorsAnother way of looking at it is that if you removeone color from the middle of the wheel you willget a new color For example, if you remove redfrom gray you will be left with a mixture of blueand green, this color is called cyan. If you removeor subtract green from neutral gray you are leftwith a mixture of red and blue known asmagenta. Red and green combine to make thethird subtractive primary color - yellow.Knowledge of these six colors and how they relateto each other will enable you to correct any colorcast in a picture.
6. CompositionImage composition describes how differentsubjects and visual elements are arranged insideof the image frame. The purpose of imagecomposition is to create a visually compellingpicture, a picture that evokes the interest of theviewer. A successful shot attracts the eye for awhile. Visual elements that a photographer uses inthe composition are for example lines, forms,textures, balance, symmetry, depth, colours,perspective, scale, and lighting. A picture can tell athousand words but how to create such a photo?
7. Rule of thirds The Rule of Thirds means that the framecan be divided into three horizontalsections and three vertical sections andtherefore, where the horizontal andvertical lines intersect makes an ideallocation for the more important parts ofyour picture. Using the rule of thirdsdoesn’t mean you have to put the pointof interest on the right hand side andthe bottom of the image.
8. ComplementaryColoursComplementary Colours are thosewhich are opposite to each other on thecolour wheel. Complements are red andgreen, blue and orange, or yellow andviolet.Complementary colours neutralize eachother when mixed together in equalamounts - making a neutral grey. Whena small amount of one colour is mixedinto its complement, the resultingcolour is a less intense, more pleasingversion of that colour.Analogous coloursAnalogous colors are colors that areadjacent or next to one another on acolor wheel. An analogous color schemeis one in which only three adjacentcolors are used. The theory is that colorswork well or harmonize together.Usually one of these colors is dominantor used more than the other two, in thepainting.
9. Macro Macro photography (orphotomacrograph or macrography, andsometimes macrophotograph) isextreme close-up photography, usuallyof very small subjects, in which the sizeof the subject in the photograph isgreater than life size (thoughmacrophotography technically refers tothe art of making very largephotographs) By some definitions, amacro photograph is one in which thesize of the subject on the negative orimage sensor is life size or greater.However in other uses it refers to afinished photograph of a subject atgreater than life size
10. Macro Macro photography (orphotomacrograph or macrography, andsometimes macrophotograph) isextreme close-up photography, usuallyof very small subjects, in which the sizeof the subject in the photograph isgreater than life size (thoughmacrophotography technically refers tothe art of making very largephotographs) By some definitions, amacro photograph is one in which thesize of the subject on the negative orimage sensor is life size or greater.However in other uses it refers to afinished photograph of a subject atgreater than life size