Friday, October 28, 2011

Showing Action in your Photographs

They say the best way to really learn something is to teach it. I had been having trouble with the concepts of the Shutter Speed setting and the Aperture Settings. I believe I have finally figured it out.

The facts on which the decisions are made a normal exposure on a sunny day with the film of ISO rating of 100 is f/16 (this is the aperture) and 1/125 (this is the shutter speed). I guess I should have done a previous post to explain this part. This theory was a 'rule' established by the teacher, that didn't make sense to me until I learned what I am about to explain.

To Stop Action in a Photograph you need a faster shutter speed. If  on that sunny day the shutter speeds 'Normal' is 1/125 you would have to increase the shutter speed by 2 or 3 stops, to 1/500 or 1/1000. This increase in shutter speed lessens the amount of time that light is being let in. If you don't adjust the aperture from the normal of f/16 you won't have enough light. You have to adjust the aperture to let in more light in the same amount of stops that you chose to increase your shutter speed. Here is what took me almost 5 weeks to understand. The lower the f-stop number of the aperture, the wider the lens opening. So for the 1/500 the f-stop would come down by two to f/8. For the 1/1000 the f-stop would be f/5.6. Here is my picture to show a Stop Action. My camera settings were 1/1000 and f/5.6 on a sunny day. That little doggie was running really fast.

To Show Action in a Photograph: In order to be able to capture the blurriness in a photograph to denote the action in the shot you have to slow down the shutter speed by 2 or 3 stops from the 'normal' 1/125 at that point you are getting more light to 1/30 or 1/15. If you don't decrease the Aperture you will have to much light. Again something that took me 5 weeks to understand, f/16 is the smallest aperture setting so how can I decrease the light? Dah, you wait until it's darker in the day? Either as the sun is coming up 2 hours before sunrise or 2 hours before sunset. Here is my picture for this assignment, it was 5:45 AM 1/30 f/8. The doggies didn't feel like running at 5:45 AM.

For Extra Credit we could do a Panning shot: Which is when you follow the action while the shutter is open and recording the image so that the subject remains in focus and the objects not moving become blurred. I'm going to be totally honest here, I have no idea how I captured it. I will tell you that this is the only one of 24 shots that worked:

Now that I'm understanding Black and White Photography I think I might begin to like it, never as much as my Digital I don't think, but I have learned lots of key concepts that will enhance my digital shots. I still haven't dared to go Manual on my digital camera I would need to pull out the camera manual and read it to figure out how to set it to the setting I need. 


melissa said...

This is the HARDEST concept to learn, but you got it now!!! woohoo! You go girl!

Sonia Barton said...

Thanks Melissa. It only took me half the semester. Now I need to practice it.

Vivienne @ the V Spot said...

Good for you. I need to learn what's happening with my camera too. :)

Sonia Barton said...

Thank you Vivienne, BTW you are really good at putting together vignette photographs, they are all over your blog, love them.


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