ES­SEN­TIAL Cam­era set tings

Digital SLR Photography - - The Beginner ’s Guide -

FO­CUS MODE: For fl ower pho­tog­ra­phy, man­ual fo­cus is of­ten the best op­tion. When shoot­ing fl ower close- ups, aut­o­fo­cus can strug­gle to lock- on to nearby ob­jects – frus­trat­ingly hunt­ing back and forth to fi nd fo­cus. Man­ual fo­cus will nor­mally prove a more ac­cu­rate and re­li­able method, al­low­ing you to place your fo­cus with pin­point pre­ci­sion. On some dig­i­tal SLRS, you will need to set man­ual fo­cus on both the cam­era body and lens. WHITE BAL­ANCE: Auto WB is nor­mally re­li­able. How­ever, when you shoot fl ow­ers, the frame will of­ten be dom­i­nated by just one colour – maybe white, blue or yel­low, de­pend­ing on the fl ower. This can fool the cam­era into think­ing it is a colour cast, and the cam­era will in­cor­rectly com­pen­sate, cre­at­ing ugly re­sults. There­fore, your cam­era’s Day­light or Cloudy WB set­ting will be a more re­li­able op­tion. If you are shoot­ing Raw, then WB is less im­por­tant – you can al­ter colour tem­per­a­ture with im­punity dur­ing post- pro­cess­ing. How­ever, if you are shoot­ing JPEGS, it is more im­por­tant to get WB cor­rect in- cam­era. ISO RAT­ING: You can take your time when pho­tograph­ing fl ow­ers – they are not go­ing any­where fast! There­fore, you can set up a tri­pod and do every­thing within your con­trol to max­imise im­age qual­ity. Pre­sum­ing you are us­ing a tri­pod and shut­ter speed is of no great rel­e­vance, select your cam­era’s low­est ISO speed – typ­i­cally in the re­gion of ISO 64- 100. This will keep noise to a min­i­mum and help cre­ate the high­est im­age qual­ity pos­si­ble. If you are shoot­ing hand­held, you may have to con­sider in­creas­ing the ISO rat­ing. SHOOT­ING MODE: Even when us­ing a tri­pod, phys­i­cally press­ing the shut­ter re­lease but­ton can cre­ate a small amount of cam­era move­ment that may soften im­age qual­ity at slower shut­ter speeds. There­fore, select your cam­era’s Self- Timer or Shut­ter De­lay mode to trig­ger the shut­ter with­out phys­i­cally touch­ing the cam­era – elim­i­nat­ing any chance of cam­era mo­tion. A two- sec­ond de­lay is all that is re­quired – long enough for you to move your fi nger away from the cam­era, and for move­ment to stop. LIVE­VIEW: Pre­sum­ing you are us­ing a tri­pod, ac­ti­vate your cam­era's Live­view fa­cil­ity. This al­lows you to use the cam­era’s rear LCD screen as a viewfi nder. You can zoom into the im­age- space and mag­nify your sub­ject in or­der to place your point of fo­cus with un­ri­valled pre­ci­sion. This is par­tic­u­larly use­ful when shoot­ing fl ower close- ups. Many cam­eras now fea­ture an ar­tic­u­lated screen. This facilty makes it more com­fort­able to com­pose low- level shots.

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