Tuesday, March 2, 2010

12 Weeks to Better Photography - Week 1

Aperture, right up there with the rule of thirds, I feel is one of the techniques in photography that I feel has made the biggest difference in my photos. I'm glad they started this course with it. It can be confusing (I found this when trying to explain it to my photography club students at school) because the "rules" behind it are sort of backwards.

Aperture is essentially how much of your picture is in focus. The lower the aperture , the less the picture is in focus (narrower depth of field). The higher the aperture, the more the picture is in focus.

As far as technicalities are concerned, you may have heard the term "f-stop." F-stop and aperture are interchangeable terms. "F-stop" comes from the symbol used to denote aperture. The standard lens' f-stop can be anywhere from f/4 to f/22. The lens I used for today's post is the "nifty-fifty" which has the ability for a lower aperture of f/1.8. This allows for a very narrow depth of field.

Observe (pardon the poor subject matter):

Aperture: f/1.8 = Very narrow depth of field.

Aperture: f/5.6 = Wider depth of field, the background is coming into focus

Aperture: f/22 = The whole picture is in focus (well, sort of, the background is a little grainy)

Thanks for tuning in!