Thursday, September 17, 2009

Getting to Know Your Shooting Modes

Shooting ModesThis probably looks familiar to many of you; the shooting mode dial varies from camera to camera but most of them have the same general settings. I'm sure that some of you undoubtedly know what these settings are, but others just dial in the green rectangle for "Automatic Mode" and call it a day.

The first step to taking better pictures is to get out of the so called "Basic Mode" settings and start using the "Creative Modes." The basic modes include: portrait, landscape, close-up, sports, night, and no-flash. In this blog, we'll usually focus more on the creative modes, but the basic modes deserve an introduction.

There's nothing you can do in the basic modes that you can't do in "Manual Mode." Problem is, manual mode can be pretty daunting. Over the next several lessons, we'll explain what each basic mode is, what it's used for, and why it creates a particular configuration. We'll teach you how to reproduce the same effects in the creative modes.

That's when you can really begin tweaking your photos to get exactly the effect you're looking for. But, not so fast. First, a homework assignment for you.

Take a few pictures in each of the basic shooting modes on your camera. Do some experimenting while you do it.
  • What happens if you use night mode during the day? What about landscape mode when taking a portrait?
  • When you're shooting in portrait mode, is there anything you notice about objects in the background?
  • When shooting in landscape mode, is anything ever out of focus?
  • When you shoot in portrait mode does the flash go off? Even during the day?
  • What happens when you take a picture of a moving object in sport mode? In night mode?

Answer those questions, make some observations of your own, post some pictures on Picasa or Flickr, and come back and leave us a comment. Tell us what you learned. Share some theories with us. Link to your pictures. We're looking forward to hearing from you!

The Photography Professors

No comments:

Post a Comment