Having left the Auto mode some time ago, using either Aperture or Shutter Priority modes, it is time to take more control of my camera. To do so I will do this in some logic order to ensure I get a full understanding of the many options, their impact and errors I may encounter.
Since practice makes perfect, the first round will be about experimenting with the basic exposure settings:
- 100 – bright daylight
- 200 – sunny day
- 400 – day lit room or overcast day
- 800 – dimly lit room
- 1600 – darker scene
- f/2.8 to f/5.6 – portraits
- f/8 to f/16 – landscapes
- Shutter Speed
- 1/30 to 1/250 – subject not moving
- 1/250 and above – subject moving
To help me with reviewing the result for each photo take, I will be using auto exposure bracketing (+/- 0.7EV, 3 frames). This will point me in the right direction for any correction that may be needed.
To start easy, I selected two locations in my backyard. The first was a corner on the East side. I started with setting at ISO 200, f/8 and 1/60 sec, (1/100 and 1/40 for the brackets). The result I got were:
It seems I was off a bit, the photo @ 1/100 sec seems to be it, but to make sure I took another set, using ISO 200, f/8 and 1/100 sec, (1/160 and 1/60 for the brackets). It confirmed that the best speed was 1/100 sec:
Next up, the West corner of my backyard. This time I started with setting at ISO 200, f/8 and 1/100 sec, (1/160 and 1/60 for the brackets). The result were:
The differences between the 1/100 and 1/160 made me think that 1/125 sec might just do the trick, so I went for it:
Judging by the results, 1/125 sec seemed to be the best setting.
This concluded my first day of shooting in manual mode. I even stayed away from cheating by first selecting the “Program” mode to see what setting I would get. Next up will be more shutter speed testing using varying light conditions, and trying to shoot moving objects.
Note: Original size photos are available via My Flickr Album!