Tuesday’s tip – Aperture

Here is part one of the technical stuff from last week’s tip about photographing kids in low light. In order to properly answer any question in photography you have to know about aperture, shutter speed, ISO and available light.

Today’s post is about aperture.

Every time you take a photograph light has to come through your lens and hit the sensor in your camera. How does that light get through? It comes in through a very small hole called an aperture. Your camera has the ability to change the size of the hole. This is called the aperture value. Katrina and I use the term “F number” when we talk about the aperture size. F2.8, F16 are examples of common F numbers. If you want to make photographs in low light, you need a small number. F1.4 is the largest opening that we have in our camera bag.

For you point and shoot folks, your cameras work the same way. In the point and shoot world instead of F numbers you get scene modes. For instance, Portrait mode is a large opening and landscape mode is a small opening.

To make things slightly more confusing, the aperture is also one of the things that controls your depth of field, or how fuzzy your background is. So you might get lots of light through that opening, but you will only have a little bit in focus.

So back to the question. If you are in a low light situation, try F1.4 or portrait mode for a better image.

Here is the visual difference between F4
Screen Shot 2013-04-08 at 11.43.57 PM

and F22.
Screen Shot 2013-04-08 at 11.23.12 PM

Hope it helps! We’ll be back next week with the next installment.

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3 Responses to Tuesday’s tip – Aperture

  1. Pingback: Tuesday's Tip - Shutter Speed | Kalem Photography

  2. Pingback: Tuesday's Tip - ISO or Sensitivity | Kalem Photography

  3. Pingback: Tuesday's Tip - Add More Light | Kalem Photography

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