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The last blog we did was on shutter speeds and the effects you can do by changing the shutter speeds. Now we will talk about what you can do by changing the Aperture setting (commonly called F-Stops, or F-numbers).
When you change the aperture on your lens, you change the depth of field in your photos.
The ideal times to change those to create the effect you want is on close-ups, like the main photo at the top of the page (the flower). Notice how the background is very blurry, and you can see how it makes the main subject stand out more than ever.
To go the other way, and use a higher F-stop number, such as F16, F22, you will primarily use that on photos you want almost everything to look sharp. The ideal time to use that aperture setting is usually for scenery photos:
Notice how the above photo seems to be so sharp from the foreground to the background.
NOTICE HOW THIS IS SOMETHING YOU CANNOT DO WITH YOUR CELL PHONE
Another article on: “Something you can’t do with a cell phone”
If you want to be a serious photographer, this is another series of why you should have a “real camera” instead of doing all your photography with your cell phone.
Controlling your shutter speed on your camera is there for you to seriously give you the control to create something beautiful and exciting. The photo above, for example, is just one great photo that was done by having control of your shutter speed. Simply done by putting your camera on a tripod, and then having your shutter speed set so that the lights on the road become a blur or a long string of color. Judging from how long the lights are streaking there, I would say that shutter speed was around 6 to 10 seconds long. Can your camera do that?
SETTING YOUR CAMERA’S SHUTTER SPEED TO “B”.
One of everyone’s favorite things to do when setting the shutter speed slow is to take a photo of a waterfall. When it is slow it just blurs the water and gives it a dream effect. If someone is in the photo, yes, they will be a blur as well. But, that kind of acts as an effect most people will like with this photo.
The “B” setting on your camera stands for “Bulb”. And back many years ago, the photographer would have his camera set on the tripod, and then use a “bulb-type” plunger that you would screw into the camera’s button. This is where the “B” came from. You can still use a remote trigger on your camera, but, it may not be a “bulb”, but, a “cable release” or even use your self timer, so you don’t touch the camera during a long exposure.
EFFECTS OF A FAST SHUTTER SPEED
Is there something wrong with this helicopter? No, this photographer used a very fast shutter speed, like 1/1000 or 1/2000 of a second to be able to stop the helicopter blades from showing any motion. Totally freezes anything that moves when you use a fast shutter speed.
Here is another photo showing fast shutter speeds:
Of course, changing your shutter speeds, may involve you changing your ISO setting as we mentioned in the previous blog. And your aperture setting may change as well. All 3 of these settings have to work together. You will just need to know what type of effect you are after in order to use the right settings, or making the decision what setting is most important with the type of photo you want to take.
On the next blog, we will go over the results of changing your aperture setting on your camera. What will you create using different aperture settings? See ya then!
ANOTHER ARTICLE ON: “SOMETHING YOU CAN’T DO WITH A CELL PHONE”
Too often in today’s world, it seems that people are thinking that cell phone photography is getting close to everything a regular SLR or DSLR, or even a mirrorless camera can do.
This article will dispel that myth so you can see that cell phone photography is still far away from doing what a good camera can do.
WHAT IS ISO?
ISO refers to your camera’s sensitivity to light. The higher the ISO, the more sensitive your camera sensor becomes, and the brighter your photos appear.
ISO is measured in numbers. Here are a few standard ISO values: 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200.
That said, pretty much every camera offers intermediate ISO values (for instance, ISO 125 and ISO 160 between ISO 100 and ISO 200). And most cameras these days include additional ISOs on the high end of the range, such as ISO 6400, ISO 12800, ISO 25600, and beyond.
WHAT DOES ISO STAND FOR?
ISO is the acronym used by the “International Standards Organization”. This is where the ISO came up with it’s standard across the world.
For the purposes of photography, the name isn’t important. Just think of ISO as your camera’s sensitivity to light, and you’ll do just fine!
ISO AND YOUR EXPOSURE SETTINGS:
By increasing the ISO in your camera, you are making the light meter more sensitive to light. It would allow you to shoot in different types of light, even when light is not good.
The first number that you would use in your ISO setting is usually 100, and is the basis for shooting in good light, such as sun, and bright light. You would then be setting your shutter speed and aperture according to what your desired effect is.
THE HIGHER THE ISO NUMBER, THE BETTER YOUR RESULTS WILL BE IN LOWER LIGHT:
Now if we go from 100 ISO to say 800 ISO, you will now have some control over what is normally not scene in the darker shadows of your photo. Like this:
Both the above pictures have something to be aware of. If shooting at 100 ISO, the photo is usually perfect if shooting outside. Look at the exposure of the outside through the window, with the first picture.
Now, looking at the second exposure, for sure it seems like it’s a better picture. But, now the outside is so washed out, the picture really seems kind of useless, because it is now over exposed. Although it looks perfect inside, where the lighting isn’t so good. So, which one do you like? Either one will work, it just depends on what you want in your photo.
HOW DOES YOUR ISO WORK WITH YOUR SHUTTER SPEED AND APERTURE?
To get the perfect exposure, it is all a combination of ISO, the proper shutter speed, and the best aperture setting. All 3 of these are important. Let’s look at why you would change your ISO setting when you have the perfect light.
A QUICK LESSON ON SHUTTER SPEEDS:
I know this is a lesson on ISO settings, but, let’s look at the other settings it has to work with: The first being the shutter speed.
If you set your camera at ISO 100, the perfect exposure outside will probably be: 1/125 second, and the aperture or F Stop will be F16. Perfect exposure. If you will recall, the faster the shutter speed, you can now stop action:
If you want to stop action, then your shutter speed will need to be close to 1/1000 second. To get the proper picture then, the easiest thing to do is to raise your ISO from 100 to 800 ISO to get the proper exposure. (That is as long as the aperture stays the same).
You see that changing your shutter speed, you will need to change your ISO to keep things in proper exposure.
CHANGING YOUR APERTURE WILL ALSO GIVE YOU THE NEED TO CHANGE YOUR ISO:
Now let’s see what can happen if you want to change your aperture setting to get a shallow depth of field, like the above photo.
If you change your setting on your aperture to F2.8, there may be the need to change your ISO, but it can’t go lower than 100, right? (Most newer cameras will only go as low as ISO 100). So, the only thing you can do here again, is to change your shutter speed, to match the ISO of 100. Changing it to F2.8 would mean you would need to change your shutter speed to 1/2000 second. That will allow you to get the exposure you need.
DIFFERENT SCENARIOS YOU WOULD USE TO CHANGE YOUR ISO SETTINGS:
* WHEN TO RAISE YOUR ISO:
You’re shooting at an indoor sports event, especially if your subject is moving fast
You’re shooting a landscape without a tripod and you need a deep depth of field
You’re shooting a landscape at night (or doing astrophotography) and you need a reasonable shutter speed to freeze the stars
You’re photographing portraits in a dark room or in the evening/night
You’re shooting an event indoors with limited window light (such as a party)
You’re photographing a dark concert
You’re photographing an art gallery, a church, or a building interior (you might also consider using a tripod, but this is against the rules in a lot of spaces)
You’re photographing wildlife in the early morning or evening (especially if you need a fast shutter speed)
You’re photographing fast-moving subjects and you need an ultra-fast shutter speed
* WHEN TO LOWER YOUR ISO:
You’re shooting motionless landscapes and your camera is mounted on a tripod
You’re photographing portraits in good light
You’re photographing an event, and you have plenty of window light or you’re using flash
You’re photographing products with a powerful artificial lighting setup
ISO and shutter speeds and aperture settings all work together. It just depends on what you want to achieve in your photo, that will be what you need to set for ISO, Shutter speed, and F Stops. We will go into why you would change your shutter speeds and the effects you can get with changing it. And then we will get into why you would change your aperture setting as well. Keep with me…….
This new space telescope should show us what the universe looked like as a baby
Imagine knowing nothing about your childhood, nothing about where you came from, and spending years hunting for the answers. Then someone hands you a just-discovered trove of photographs of yourself as an infant. You’d finally be able to scrutinize every detail, searching for clues about yourself and how you came to be the way you are.
That’s just what it will be like for astronomers once a long-anticipated, $10 billion telescope finally blasts off into space in the coming days. If all goes well, it will soon show them what the universe looked like as a newborn, nearly 14 billion years ago.
NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, the most powerful space telescope ever, is waiting at a launch site in French Guiana. It should be able to detect infrared light from galaxies that are so far away that the light from them has been traveling through space for almost the entire history of the universe.
A telescope, or a time machine?
Using telescopes, astronomers have been able to see far more distant galaxies, which means they’ve been able to see farther back into the universe’s history. So far, the most distant galaxy ever discovered, GN-z11, was spotted by the Hubble Space Telescope.
To the untrained eye, it looks like a red blob, but “it’s basically like looking back in time about 13.3, 13.4 billion years ago,” says Charlotte Mason, associate professor at the Cosmic Dawn Center of the Niels Bohr Institute and the University of Copenhagen. “That’s just 300, 400 million years after the Big Bang.”
Hubble is limited in how far back in time it can look, so finding this galaxy was kind of a lucky break. Astronomers only spotted it because decades of using Hubble have let them scour much of the sky, and this particular early galaxy is surprisingly bright.
The James Webb Space Telescope should be able to provide more information about lots of additional galaxies this old and even older, which will help researchers understand how galaxies formed and changed into the familiar shapes and structures seen today.
The James Webb Space Telescope has technology that should let it see back to 100 million to 200 million years after the Big Bang.
“So really, the period when we think the very first galaxies formed,” says Mason.
This telescope, which took decades to design and build, also has instruments that will let scientists probe the chemical make-up of the galaxies.
A churning mix of excitement and anxious dread has taken hold of astronomers around the world as they wait for the launch of the most powerful telescope ever, planned for the morning of Christmas Eve.
The James Webb Space Telescope has been in the works for decades, and its gold-plated, 21-foot mirror will see much farther out into space than the venerable Hubble Space Telescope. Its launch has been delayed so many times over the years that, for many, it seems almost unbelievable that it’s finally about to happen.
The three-story-tall telescope, with its heat shield the size of a tennis court, is all folded up and crammed inside a rocket. It will have to unfold itself and travel about a million miles away from Earth, cooling down to temperatures around minus 370 degrees Fahrenheit.
Before all that can happen, it has to get safely off the planet. Astronomers can’t help but imagine this $10 billion telescope getting obliterated in an instant by an unlikely, but still possible, rocket explosion. But Faherty, who will be using the telescope for her research, thinks her anxiety will actually lessen on launch day.