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Exposure in photography - what is it? Exposure rules in photography
Exposure in photography - what is it? Exposure rules in photography

A digital SLR camera is now in almost every family, but not everyone will bother to figure out how to use it correctly. If you are a beginner photographer, then this article is for you! Exposure in photography is the basics of professional photography. You won't be able to take any good shots if you don't have a clue about it. It's the first thing photographers learn. They just have to know the rules of exposure in photography. The parameters included in this concept only at first glance seem incredibly complex.

So, let's figure out what exposure is in photography. How to avoid mistakes for novice photographers? First of all, you should learn elementary terminology, because without it you will not understand a single instruction and will not be able to put into practice the advice from professional articles.

exposure in photography


Exposure in photography is a list of specific parameters,each of which is adjusted to the situation in which the shooting takes place. Your gadget, acting through the lens, measures the amount of light that enters from the outside, and transmits commands to the settings. Good light is a vital factor for a good photo.

Expo parameters

Let's analyze the value of the exposure parameters.

  • Aperture (f). The lens of your device has thin petals (plastic or iron) that open and close the hole in the lens. The aperture restricts the amount of light that passes through the lens. This value is marked with the letter f, and the number next to it will show a small or large value. There is such a thing as aperture number. It is denoted by F/x. In this fraction, x is the focal length of the lens.
  • Excerpt. This parameter is measured in seconds and fractions of a second. Indicates the time of exposure of the light beam to the sensitive material of the camera.
  • Light sensitivity (ISO) refers to how a film or sensor reacts to light. The higher the ISO number, the lighter the image will be.
exposure in photography how to avoid mistakes

White balance

Another of the most important parameters when shooting is white balance. BB is responsible for the color rendering on your frames. This is a complex setting that can be left untouched during normal shooting. It is enough to auto-tune your gadget.

fundamentals of exposure in photography

It happens that the photographer is not satisfied with the color reproduction in the frames. This means that you should adjust the white balance yourself.To do this, use a special gray card. If not, then just take a picture of a white sheet of paper. Your gadget will take it as a standard. There is another option, in the settings you can choose one of the options: cloudy, incandescent, daylight and so on.

You may also hear the terms "expopara" and "exposure triangle" from professionals.

Expopara is a tandem: aperture and shutter speed. The exposure triangle is all three of the settings discussed above. You should be very careful when shooting in manual mode, since here you can set each parameter separately. You should know: changing each of the parameters will be reflected in the picture.

Let's play with aperture: bokeh effect

What does this funny name mean? This is when a person is depicted in the photo, and around him you see a blurred background, the outlines of colored circles, dots, snowflakes, multi-colored stripes. The background looks exquisite, and nothing distracts the eye from it. The bokeh effect can turn the most boring image into a masterpiece! Let's get down to practice.

Settings for your optics

What, in principle, does the bokeh effect depend on? If you need to specifically get a curly effect, then you can not do without special filters that are simply put on the lens. To make the background just become blurry, you will need to work on the gadget settings.

So, bokeh depends:

  • from the depth of space;
  • degrees of sharpness of subjects.

The degree of blur is determined by the following parameters:

  • Aperture. She plays herethe most important role. The more the petals open, the more blurred the background will become. Advice! Be careful when setting the widest aperture. If one person in such a picture is likely to turn out well, then a group of people or buildings will most likely turn out blurry. Use the bokeh effect wisely, it is not relevant everywhere.
  • Focal length. The larger it is, the more noticeable the effect will be. If your optics has a zoom lens, then just twist its circle.
  • Distance to the subject. The closer you are to the person, the more likely it is to have a nice blurry background. Do not overdo it, because the device still needs to adjust the focus. It is optimal if there is a distance of one meter between the person and the background. Then the background will become a masterpiece.

People for whom photography is their bread, get fast lenses for work. This is expensive professional equipment, but with such lenses, the bokeh effect is amazing.

Macro lenses and blurred portrait lenses are also suitable for blurring. The former are needed for shooting very small objects.

Bokeh effect and scrap materials

To create a blur effect, it is not necessary to buy a lot of expensive filters and torture the camera with complex settings. Many professionals are helped out by improvised means. It could be:

  • plastic film;
  • light fabric (chiffon, organza);
  • shawls with an interesting pattern.

These things can be used as background. Do not forget: it is optimal that betweenthe background and the object were a distance in meters.

There is another option for using a plastic bag. Wind it around the lens so that there is a small gap in which the subject will fit. You can secure the package with small pieces of tape.

Cut a piece of plexiglass, cardboard, orgalipt into a circle or other desired shape. Such a homemade filter will allow you to take unique photos, just fix it properly on the lens. Cloth or handkerchiefs can also be placed around the edge of the lens for a unique effect.

photographs with different exposures

Exposure setting

Exposure in photography is very important. So let's talk about setting it up. Each camera has its own subtleties in building exposure. In the instructions you will find how to properly use the "hot keys" on the case. For example, in Nikon SLR cameras, you can adjust the ISO using the Fn button. The wheel next to the screen will allow you to adjust the shutter speed. To adjust the aperture, you need to press the small button next to the shutter button.

Semi-auto modes of SLR cameras

To get photos with different exposures, you can choose one of the gadget's semi-automatic modes. This is a great option for beginners. By changing only one of the three most important parameters, you will get the correct exposure in digital photography.

On a Canon professional SLR camera, the icon on the tv wheel indicates shutter priority; av - aperture priority.

Creative ModesNicon:

  • M - manual mode.
  • P - semi-automatic mode.

Advice! Beginners should use semi-automatic mode, focusing on aperture or shutter priority. Manual mode will be difficult at first. Do not simplify your life and use automatic and settings. As practice shows, this is convenient, but over time you will just be too lazy to understand the settings and you will lose the opportunity to engage in creative photography.

Professional advice in this matter is very important, but you will get great photos only after gaining practice. Shoot as many as possible, write down the values ​​of the parameters that are successfully set, as well as indicators that should be avoided.

Advice! Do not ignore the instructions for the gadget. This knowledge will fully enable you to take great shots.

Exposure bar

Exposure scale - a parameter that will tell you how correctly you have set the values ​​of the triangle. Find the exposure level indicator on your camera using the instructions. Look at him. Are the values ​​skewed to the right? The photo will be too light. When deviating to the left - overexposed. Proper exposure in a photograph is when the mark is at zero.

The exposure scale can also be adjusted manually. If the exposure compensation is set to zero, and the photo is not bright or dark enough, then play with the indicator slider.

exposure in digital photography

Photo metering (modes)

There are three exposure modes inPhoto. These are matrix, dot and weighted average. Consider each of them:

  • Matrix is ​​also called multi-valued, evaluative or multi-valued. In this mode, the camera itself measures the exposure in the photo. To work, you need uniform lighting. This is the most hassle-free mode.
  • Center-weighted. The mode takes a measurement in the center. The edges of the image are left out. Great mode for working on portraits.
  • Point. The hardest mode. A beginner can't handle it. Similar to the previous one, but only 5% of the image is measured. To work, you need the subject to be well lit and contrast.

Metering methods

The types of metering were listed above, but all of them have a significant drawback. The result does not depend much on the illumination, it is affected only by the subject. For example, let's take two plates of vegetables. One of them will be orange, the other blue. The lighting in the room is the same, and the light falls evenly on the dishes. With the help of spot metering, we find out the exposure value of each object. Interestingly, the blue plate has a lower brightness, and the yellow one has a higher one. But if you figure it out, it shouldn't be like that, because the lighting conditions of objects are the same.

exposure metering in photography

How light affects metering

The reason for such differences in exposure under the same lighting conditions is the reflectivity of different colors. You can continue the study and change the dishes to white and black. The illumination should not change.Naturally, the exposure for a black plate is needed more than for snow-white dishes. Conclusion: metering does not take into account the illumination of the subject, but its reflective characteristics.

correct exposure in photography

Exposure in the smartphone camera

Understanding exposure in photography means getting great shots on any gadget! Modern smartphones are equipped with an excellent camera, and the pictures often turn out no worse than with a professional camera. And the mobility of the device is a huge plus, because it is not always possible to carry a voluminous mirror gadget with you.

Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to influence the exposure in the built-in camera. The built-in function itself takes measurements and distributes the flow of light.

Gaunt L. "Exposition in photography"

The book deals with setting exposure as a creative process. The author enthusiastically tells how this process is close to art, because this is far from a boring collection of measurement indicators!

In the book “Exposure in Photography” by Gonta, it is said that with the right parameters, the main thing is that the tonality in the picture is observed. White and black colors should be pure, and intermediate shades should not be distorted.

What will the book teach? The author will tell you that the correct exposure in photography is the decision on what tone will be given to the picture. This book will help you understand the importance of exposure in photography. How to avoid mistakes in this matter, tell the famousbook author.

Know the capabilities of your camera. When a person first picks up a SLR camera and begins to understand the settings, the most difficult stage is learning the basics of exposure in photography. Having de alt with this issue, you will become one step closer to the art of professional photography.

In this article, you learned what information can be seen in the camera's viewfinder and how to use it correctly to take pictures with the correct exposure. Having bought sophisticated equipment, which is a SLR camera, you must learn the instructions like a mantra. If you do not know what most of the buttons on the gadget are for, then by going into the settings, you will only get confused. So study and your family albums will be filled with exceptionally high-quality pictures.

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