What settings do you use on your camera??
There I asked it.... Phew...
© Corrie M Avila
I don't know why, but for some reason this seems to be such a personal question. When I first started taking photos I used the presets. I would move my little dial around to match the icon with what I was taking a photo of. This wasn't because I was super happy with the results.... it was because I didn't understand the technical part of the camera. I was overwhelmed with the settings and it all seemed to be in another language. I read books, watched tutorials, had my husband explain it to me with drawings and everything... but I still could not figure it out. I became REALLY frustrated because I knew what I wanted to do composition wise, but I never EVER was able to achieve the results I wanted.
Then one day I meet a photographer who offers to help (insert angels singing and rays of light shining down on this moment :). Little did she know I would take her up on it (buahahaha). Seriously though, she has been a God-send. We planned a photo day and I remember sitting together on a rock near a river. We both had our cameras out.... she would tell me what settings she was using and then I put my camera to the same settings. She walked me through it step by step and showed the patience of a saint. I would not be where I am today if it were not for her. So now I am paying it forward.
I will be starting a series of tutorials on how to shoot in "M" (manual) mode. I personally use a Canon, but the basics are the same whether you have a Canon, a Nikon, or something else. I hope to explain the basics of your camera to you in an easy to understand way.
I did not get the full concept immediately. I took what I learned that day home with me and practiced. I remember the exact moment I took a photo completely in manual mode. I was sitting on my couch watching my son play with his toy truck on the coffee table. The light was shining though the window on the truck and was creating a reflection on the table. I grabbed my camera, gritted my teeth, and gave it a whirl. It took a few shots to achieve the look I was going for, but I did it :) I'm not gonna lie, I did a little dance! And just like that... everything clicked and I had my lightbulb moment. My hope is that you will have yours as well.
My Son's Toy Truck and My FIRST Manually Exposed Photograph :)
ISO 2500 ~ 75mm ~ f/11 ~ 1/20 sec
© Corrie M Avila
If you don't know what those settings mean now, you will by the time we finish the tutorials. Basically, I still had no idea what my ISO should be (so I left it in automatic ~ hence the number of 2500). It should really be no higher than 200 in this situation. And my aperture (f-stop) should be a much smaller number... This photograph is raw in it's chemical make-up ~ with a high ISO, a too small aperture, and highlights that are blown out... but it is mine :) Everyone has to start somewhere and this is my pride and glory.
Now it's time to buckle up, sit back, put your feet up, and enjoy the ride! I look forward to starting this journey with you all <3
Capturing the Moment