A beginner’s guide to DSLR settings

If you are a beginner photographer who wants to buy an DSLR camera or already has one, you can be confused by the wide array of settings that you can adjust as you take your photos. On the other hand however, you definitely want to grasp them, as adjusting them correctly will give the amount of control over the images you take that you have always wanted. What is more, they might actually be difficult to understand than they initially appear. Below, we will try to explain them in a way that even a newcomer can understand.

One of the most important aspects connected with the usage of a DSLR camera is definitely aperture. Basically, aperture is the amount of light let into the lens of your camera, which is why depending on the aperture settings, the lens might become bigger or smaller to let in more or less light. The reason why sometimes photographers choose narrow aperture is that in this way, a larger part of the photograph appears to be in focus. Therefore, the size of the aperture should depend on the desired effect.

Shutter speed is the amount of time the aperture blades take to close after you press to shutter button on your camera. You should set the shutter speed to be as fast as possible when taking fast-motion shots. However, sometimes it is recommended to set the shutter speed to be slower, as it means that the camera’s sensor can be exposed to light for a longer time and thus allows the camera to perform better in low-light situations. What is more, a slower shutter speed can produce images with the motion blur effect, which can sometimes look quite artistic.

Last but not least, there is the ISO setting, which is an approximation of film speed for the purposes of a digital camera. The higher the film speed, the more sensitive to light the camera becomes. You can set the ISO setting to high if you want good low-light performance without lowering the shutter speed, but it comes with a risk of making the light in the picture unrealistically bright.