The time in instruction during Ms. King’s photojournalism class, I have learned a good deal about cameras and what situations can occur out in the field while shooting.
The first thing to note would be to always set your ISO first. We were all advised by Ms. King to show up about 15 minutes before whatever event we are attending and prepare our camera to take pictures.
One of the first duties to take care of when we arrive on the scene is to set either the ISO or the aperture. The shutter speed is another camera function that will need to be modified. The shutter speed can be adjusted throughout the shoot based on what shots we are attempting to take. Sports and quick-moving shots will require a faster shutter speed (ex. 1/2000) but it’s the opposite for a shot that the subject will be standing still or slower physical movements (ex. 1/30).
What is a camera’s main function or job? It is not to take pictures, but more specifically it is to capture light. The camera doesn’t know what it is taking a picture of, but it can capture light.
The best cameras will cost more money and that’s just the way it is. If we purchase a camera for $3,000 then we will get the value of a $3,000 camera (more shutter speed and aperture options, depending on the lens). And vice versa if you were to buy a camera for $250 then you are going to get the standardized camera that includes the necessities of a camera. The biggest difference here is the shutter speeds available to you as a photographer.
Exposure is vital to producing a successful photo and there are four factors that control exposure. The amount of light available dictates how much you have to change the aperture based on if you’re outside or inside and what kind of lights are inside.
Second, how sensitive the sensor is to light (also referred to as “film speed”) can control if a photo is underexposed or overexposed.
Third, how much light you let in a camera and that can be controlled by what ISO setting your camera is at. ISO requires a low number if you’re shooting in a brighter lit area and a high number if you’re shooting in a dimly lit area.
Last, for how long you let light into the camera, which can be altered by changing the shutter speed setting. Shutter speed is considered a duration of time, measured in increments of seconds. All these factors play an important role in whether or not your picture is underexposed or overexposed.
White balancing is necessary to attain a successful photo, because it allows your camera to match the light source you are photographing under. White balancing can be done on sight by taking a picture of a solid white image or using one from the saved image menu that is also solid white.
The time I’ve spent in Ms. King’s instruction period, I have learned a handful about camera controls and I am excited to learn more about how photography and journalism blends and helps the world.