Getting to Know Your Camera
Cameras are amazing artistic tools with a myriad of controls designed to help make creative decisions. Placement of these controls can vary widely across camera makes and models, but their functionality remains fairly constant. This prep worksheet will help you locate the most essential settings, which means you’ll spend less time searching and more time using them during a photography class, workshop or tour. The illustrations shown are approximations and may not look exactly like your camera, so keep your owner’s manual handy as well. If you are using a point-and-shoot or smartphone camera, search the menu settings to see if there are options mimicking the features listed below. Once you’ve located the controls and learned how to adjust them, it’s helpful to write notes so you can quickly remember. Don’t worry about how they work. We’ll show you that!
THE “EXPOSURE TRIANGLE”
The first three settings work in concert to determine exposure. When shooting in auto mode, the camera determines how they are adjusted in relation to each other. In manual or semi-manual modes, the photographer adjusts one or more of them in balance with the other to create a good exposure.
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