Using Your DSLR Camera Aperture Setting As A Creative Tool

It is difficult to choose the correct aperture setting for each picture, but it is also one of the most important aspects of photography. Many amateur photographers choose to use the default settings, regardless of the shot sequences or surroundings. However, this is not the best way to use the aperture setting on a DSLR camera as a creative tool.

Understanding Your Shot

Before clicking the button, any photographer must first understand the shot before they can take it. The best aperture depends on the composition of the shot, the distance to you and other objects, as well as what your artistic goals are. If you’re looking at a beautiful waterfall, consider what you wish to accomplish with your photograph.

You can choose to have a soft, blurred image or one that captures every drop of water. It is more difficult to choose the right settings if you don’t know what to do. This is also related to shutter speeds, but first, determine the depth of field you want to capture.

In the waterfall example, you will be standing just a few feet away from the edge. You want to concentrate on the entire waterfall from the far edge up to within a few feet. You will need to choose an aperture opening of 16-22. This will allow the image to expand by focusing on everything.

If you are looking to capture a portrait of a person, where the focus is on the person and not the surroundings around him/her (which you should), you will need to pick a setting that is less than 4. This will make it so that the focus of your subject is on the person and not the surroundings.

It is important to first understand the shot and your goals before you can use the DSLR aperture setting to create.

How shutter speed and DSLR aperture settings are connected

Keep in mind that modern cameras link the shutter speed with the DSLR aperture settings. The shutter speed will be adjusted according to the aperture settings when you adjust it. For example, if you want to photograph someone kicking a soccer ball, you will need an F stop setting of around f22. You realize it is out of focus when you take the photo. The blur is likely because the shutter speed was extended, which caused the object to be exposed longer, leading to blurred images.

You will also need to adjust shutter speeds to compensate for adjustments made to the DSLR aperture settings.

For example, if you want to photograph a person standing in front of the waterfall but the water blurred and not the surrounding scenery, you might choose a slower shutter speed and a higher aperture setting. Experimenting with different shutter speeds and aperture settings is a great way to see how they affect your photos.

You’ll soon be using the aperture settings on your DSLR camera as a creative tool, and people will notice your photos.

Wayne Burke is an expert in Media Arts and invites you to expand your photography knowledge.