Let’s Simplify Photography

Welcome to SimplifyingPhotography, a blog dedicated to making photography easy and enjoyable, written by Joe Bucherer (joebuchererphotography.com).

I go to parties, weddings, group events with my camera and some gear, and people express interest in taking pictures, but think it is overly technical and hard. Things like shutter speeds and the dreaded F-Stop, get in the way. As a result they opt for use of their phone camera, which is fine, but there are severe limitations, the biggest being that when they have something they really like, it gets grainy when it gets enlarged.

I’ll be the first to admit – take the picture with the best camera you have with you, but don’t be afraid of a camera. Whether a point and shoot, a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex), or tablet understand the fundamentals to capture the memory.  Let’s get to the basics of photography and have some fun.  That is my goal – I hope its yours too!

Over successive posts, we’ll cover various topics in a non-technical format (read this as plain English), try and provide some examples to illustrate things, and some practice suggestions. You set the pace.

So, just what is photography?  It is the act of capturing light in a box on some matter that allows what you are looking at to be copied, or better yet, painted with light.  In the old days, this was with film, comprised basically of silver and chemicals that produced what we call a picture.  Today, things are captured digitally, or electronically, by sensors in our devices.

The colors we see everyday are based on different levels of light. Red has a certain light energy and so does blue. Likewise, different types of indoor lighting give off different hues. As an example, incandescent light from traditional light bulbs gives off a yellow hue – this is why that paint you bought in the store or fabric you selected for furniture may not look the same in your home and its particular lighting conditions.

So, as a next step, get that camera out of wherever you have been hiding it, or if you do take pictures but want to get more comfortable, give it a look over. In the next few posts we will cover a few topics to get us started. Each post will be on a specific topic and can be done back to back or when you are comfortable moving on. Briefly though, the next topics will be:

  • ISO (also called ASA) or the sensitivity of the camera to light.
  • Shutter Speed – This is the speed with which your aperture (the opening that lets light into your camera) opens or closes. 
  • Aperture – The size of the opening that lets light in.
  • The control dial with all those letters like M, A, S, and A / AUTO on it.

Along the way we’ll have exercises and examples…and that all important comment box so we can share our experiences.

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