These are free photography lessons introducing you to your camera’s settings. They’re at a suitable level for newcomers which cover the technical aspects in the clearest way possible, using notes and videos to explain the essentials of what you need to know. During the eight photography lessons you will learn how to navigate your way around the camera and understand how different terms relate to photographic outcomes. Understanding gained here will set you up for our workshops. Alternatively you can learn these lessons on location at our Summer School.
The lessons include: available shooting modes, exposure control, histograms, auto focus, focus point, depth of field (DOF) ISO, metering, white balance and exposure bracketing. There are also two in depth videos explaining the relationships between ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed – the exposure triangle. Matthew Sergeant here does an excellent job in keeping it non technical using diagrams. You should be able to cover everything in a couple of hours but it will take time afterwards practicing with your camera for everything to sink in.
PHOTOGRAPHY LESSONS: CONTENT
Often you can’t tell if a photograph has camera shake until you enlarge it. So to avoid being disappointed when you get home and review your images, it’s essential in certain conditions such as wind to check for shake, by zooming in on the back of your screen after you’ve taken it.
F stops, Shutter speeds, Metering modes, Program ( Fully Auto Exposure), Manual, AV or A (Aperture priority for maximum depth of field, TV or S (shutter priority for “stop-action” faster shutter speed), Icon modes, ISO, White Balance (WB), Focus, Metering and Flash.
The camera has two methods of controlling the amount of light coming in. The first is via the shutter speed which is how long the shutter (an electronic curtain) is open for. The second is the aperture, which is situated in the lens, which can be opened and closed. A video section explains the exposure relationships between the two.
Still part of exposure control, the histogram is a graphical representation of your exposure tones from darkness on the left to brightness on the right. Photographers use this to ensure their photographs have good detail in both the shadow and highlight areas.
Whilst most digital cameras have auto focus capability, there are options to set your camera’s focus system depending on the type of photographic subject you’re aiming at. In the lessons both video and text, we will run through these features and explain when to use manual focus.
Referred to in shorthand as DOF, depth of field relates to how much of the scene, from immediately in front of the camera to infinity is sharp and in focus. If you’re experienced in using smartphones, then you’ll note how everything is sharp. A by-product of camera phone development is the appearance of a large DOF, through the necessity of a short focal length and small sensor size.