Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Photo 101: The Lingo

The lingo...With getting your feet wet in photography, it's not long before new words and expressions start to fly. Here are a few to start off...

  • Aperture - An aperture is a hole or an opening through which light travels. A narrow aperture will result in sharp focus. A wide aperture will have a sharp focus on the subject, but blur the surroundings or background. 
  • f-number - The f-number (aka f-stop is the focal length divided by the "effective" aperture diameter. It's a dimensionless number that is a quantitative measure of lens speed.

Aperture and f-stops

  • Exposure - The Exposure is the total amount of light allowed to fall on the photographic medium (film or digital image sensor) during the process of taking a picture. This can be a short period of time for a darker image, or a longer period of time for a brighter image. High Dynamic Range (HDR) photos use multiple exposures to obtain the HDR image.

Under exposure = Dark Image (Top Left)
Normal exposure = "Normal" Image (Top Middle)
Over exposure = Bright Image (Top Right)
3 Exposures combined = The HDR Image (Bottom)

  • Shutter - a shutter is a device that allows light to pass for a determined period of time (aka Shutter Speed), for the purpose of exposing photographic film or digital image sensor to capture a permanent photo/image of a scene.

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