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Aperture and depth of field #photography

A camera has focus points which might be small dots or squares which help you focus on your subject. You might be shooting a landscape and want the whole frame in focus but you still need to choose a subject within that frame. Unless you’re going to let the camera decide all the settings you also need to choose your aperture setting.



Aperture and depth of field #photography

I mostly shoot on aperture priority and so I need to measure the light and set the ISO and then set the aperture for the depth of field that I want. That is largely a matter of judgement. If I’m taking a portrait I want a shallow depth of field and I’ll choose a wide aperture and often zoom in quite close. If I’m shooting a landscape I’ll go for a narrow aperture which will bring distant objects into better focus.

aperture priority


Enjoying the spring landscapes #photography

Through the winter I struggled with poor light and even had a few photographs that were ‘noisy’. Noise is those little spots often white or purple that appear at the higher ISO settings. Now, though, we have great light and can enjoy walking in the country and getting amazing pictures. But all that green can be a little boring so watch out for things that will break up the sea of green such as walkers, cyclists and horse riders. The spring is a great season for landscape photography as the days get longer and the evenings get lighter.



Wide-open in low-light #photography

I’ve been taking photos at more events indoors recently and doing much less landscape photography because of the weather. Indoor photography poses its own problems with low-light. To get some scenes in focus you need a wide depth of field but struggle with the low-light at narrower apertures. The answer is to just stay wide-open and try to take close-up shots of people. After all, at events, it is the people who are the subject!

I kept the aperture wide-open for this shot.


Using a long lens #photography

Sometimes we need to use a long lens to get a close-up shot of our subject. This can be for wildlife photography or in my case it was to get a shot of a helicopter taking off near my house. The lens I used was a 55 – 300mm lens which is the equivalent of a 10 times zoom on a bridge camera.

helicopter using a long lens


Understanding wide open apertures #photography

When we take a photograph the shutter snaps open and closed. The aperture is how wide that doorway to our camera opens. Imagine the shutter as a doorway, the stops go behind the door and so a large stop say F/16 only allows the door to open a little. At f/30 and we have a tiny pinhole and at f/3.5, on most lenses, it wide open. On my 35 mm prime lens, wide open is even wider at f/1.8.

LIBBY ROSE - wide open aperture


Christmas camera ideas #photography

If you’re interested in photography, you might be thinking of buying a camera to take photos over Christmas or asking for one as a present. What should you get? That depends on what you’ll be using it for. A cheap little point and shoot camera does the job but do you want better photos? Then your Christmas camera needs a little more thought.

Buying a Christmas camera?


Composing your winter picture #photography


I have to admit that I don’t spend enough time composing my pictures, but I do look for diagonal lines and anything that will give the image perspective. Photographing landscapes in winter is difficult with the poorer light but we can still get images with a cold winter look. (more…)

Coping with poor light #photography


Landscape photography in winter is a challenge, it’s either cold or very cloudy. I took this shot on Sunday in very poor light but composed the shot quite well. Notice the diagonal lines and the way the trees in the middle ground contrast with the trees in the background. (more…)

Aperture settings #photography

METRO  (1)

This isn’t a very good picture, but it demonstrates what I want to say. There is a post on the left that is out of focus and the birdhouse and tree are in focus. The depth of field is quite narrow. As you go away from the optimal distance from the camera things get blurred, but our subject is in sharp focus. (more…)

Competition photography

competition shot

When you’re taking photos for a competition, you want a nice scene for a landscape, but you usually want your subject in sharp focus. You get sharp focus with a wide aperture. For this shot I needed a fast shutter speed too. (more…)

Settings on your camera #photography

Camera settings: narrow aperture

Last week I talked about pre-shoot settings. I did those settings before I took this shot. You can see the exif on bottom of the picture. It was bright sunlight, so I set the white balance for bright sunlight and set the aperture quite narrow for depth of field. The ISO was on auto and the camera increased it to 160. That is strange, I have no idea why it did that. (more…)

Aperture and depth of field #photo

Picture courtesy of Nikon

The diagram above gives you some idea of apertures, the narrowest ones can be little more than a pin hole. Most lenses don’t go very wide. On a bridge camera they tend to go wider. On my Nikon the widest I can set the aperture is about f/3.5, more expensive lenses will go wider. (more…)

Aperture and depth of field #photography

SNOW - aperture - depth of field

This is the third lesson in my photography series for beginners. This week, I’ll look at a few things. White balance can be important, but I’ll also look at aperture and depth of field. What do you think the subject is in this picture? (more…)

Photography: How to take better pictures

Enchanted 2

I mostly use my Nikon D3200 DSLR with it’s separate lenses, filters and speed-light, but you don’t need expensive equipment to take good photos. This picture was taken with my Fujifilm S5600 in 2012 and came out good!


Photography: photographing fireworks

Firework explosion

Photography: Photographing fireworks – Mike Maynard

Fireworks are one of the hardest things to photograph, especially with a DSLR. Capturing the exact fraction of a second that the explosion occurs is part skill and part luck! This image is quite spectacular and artistic! (more…)

Neodigital Art | technicalities


The Lake

I’ve started today with a photo of the lake that I took  on Sunday; the light was good and you can see it reflects well off the lighter colours. This isn’t just photography, making a visual record of a scene, but art. This is editing the picture to try to make something aesthetically pleasing. A picture that you would like hanging on the wall of your art gallery or living room. My local arts gallery cost $100 million and they have an open arts exhibition in April. They want action shots and the entries are restricted to the West Midlands. This means they will get entries from the arty types with expensive cameras from across the West Midlands, shooting action with their cameras set on fast. They would have been better not specifying a subject and having the local restriction just people in the town rather than the region. Art tends to be politicised though. You can enter competitions and exhibitions even with photographs like this one.


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