Wednesday, February 5, 2014

DSLR Tips [guest post-Elah Tree]

One goal I would love to accomplish blog-wise is to become better with my photography skills.  To be honest, most of the pictures on this lil ol' blog are straight from my iphone.  It's just easy, ya know?  But for certain posts like recipes or fashion posts it would be great to learn some basic photography tricks to spice things up a bit.
Lucky for us, Samantha is here to teach us a thing or two about our DSLR cameras...
In case you forgot, a few amazing bloggers will be taking over the blog this week while I'm spending quality time with my family on vacation! I hope you enjoy these posts as much as I do! :)
Make sure to check out all the other guest posts by clicking here!

Hi everyone!  I'm Samantha and I blog over at Elah Tree - a lifestyle blog full of creativity and encouragement. I also run a lovely little shop full of fun accessories! There are so many things I wanted to share with you today, but of course I had to narrow it down or we would be here all day. So, I decided to share with you one of my favorite passions; photography.

My journey with photography begun my senior year of college. I had decided I wanted to learn photography so I took "Intro to Photojournalism II." While I did learn some basics of photojournalism what I mostly took away was the basics on how to properly shoot with a DSLR. It was ingrained in me from that moment to always shoot manually, and now I'm not sure I could shoot any other way. For all those that are in the process of learning to shoot with a DSLR I thought it would be helpful to share what I learned. These tips are the very very basics. Everything I am sharing are things I have learned over the years.

When shooting manually there are three things that you will be working with all the time; shutter speed, aperture, and reading your meter. 

Shutter Speed is the rate in which your shutter opens and closes. The larger the number the faster the shutter will open. The smaller the number the slower your shutter will open.

Aperture is how wide your lens will open to let light in. The smaller the number of your aperture the more light will enter. The larger the number of aperture the less light will enter.

Reading your meter is kind of tricky. Each camera meter has a different sensitivity to the light. When you look through the view finder of your camera at the bottom of the screen you'll see a scale with a plus sign on one end, a minus sign on the other end, and a 0 in the middle. When reading your meter you want the scale line to be even with the 0.
 (properly exposed meter reading)

( over exposed meter reading)
 (under exposed meter reading)

When I shoot I set my aperture first and adjust by shutter speed to create a proper exposure. For example the photo below was shot at f/1.8 (aperture), 1/500 (shutter speed), 50mm(lens).

Different lighting, the amount of people, and different events will all require different sittings when shooting manually. Sporting events require a higher shutter speeds. Low lighting requires a lower shutter speed. The more you practice the better you will get at knowing which settings to use.

Remember to Practice, Practice, Practice.

Thank you so much for having me! Stop by and say hi!

Are you interested in photography?! Have any more helpful hints?


  1. This is a great intro to DSLR shooting! Thanks for sharing! I love your use of back light in that shot! :)

  2. I have a dslr camera and don't know how to use it (except for auto) Thanks for sharing!


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