Yesterday I attended my first photography class. It was a one time only 3 hour Beginner Photography course and there was a lot of information crammed into three hours. No, I take that back. There was a lot of information crammed into 2 hours. The first hour was an overview of why people take pictures and the types of pictures people take and what we will learn in this first class.
Finally, after the hour long introduction, we were introduced to f-stops and depth-of-field. After discussing aperture and how that affects depth-of-field we were sent outside with our cameras set in aperture priority to take some photos practicing using f/3.5 and f/22. This made complete and total sense to me yet some of my pictures were bleached out and others were really dark. Come to find out, I also have to adjust the ISO. And apparently this will automatically adjust the shutter speed. WHAT? What do I adjust the ISO to? Why can’t it be a standard number? Now a feeling of information overload is starting to settle in.
After we take 30 or so pictures we head back inside to look at the snapshots we’ve taken and we also look at the fstop, ISO, and shutter speed used on each picture. I feel like the instructor is talking in Greek. About the only thing I pulled away from the last part of the class is that a lower ISO will produce better quality prints and for right now I should keep my shutter speed between 1/100 and 1/1000.
I leave class knowing I need lots of practice yet still very overwhelmed with how fstop, ISO, and shutter speed work together. Wanting practice I stopped by Snoqualmie Falls and took a few shots. I’m not entirely happy with the lighting but I know with practice I will nail these new techniques.