Four basic settings can make a big difference in your fireground photos.
At the end of the day a camera is a camera. A 12 megapixel camera is the same light box at 16 megapixel camera. The camera can be made by Cannon, Nikon or Pentax. It makes no difference what brand you use. What really matters is how you know operation your camera. Do you know how to operate all the settings on your camera? The difference between knowing camera and not knowing settings helps make the difference in a photos outcome.
All Digital Single Lens Reflex cameras have four major controls.
Manual Mode – allows you to set up the camera’s ISO, shutter speed and depth of field. An example would be day time. ISO anywhere from 400 to 800 to get max amounts of colors. A Shutter speed of anything of 1/60 of a second or above is perfect A depth of field of 5.6.
Aperture Priority- is used to control the depth of field for the camera lens. Depth of field can be used to either blur out the background of foreground depending on what you are shooting on the fire ground. Examples of depth of Field. During the day 5.6. At night anything from F. 1.8 to 4. Aperture controls the amount of light coming into the camera.
Shutter Priority – Is how one creates movement or freezes action. The way you create movement is by placing the shutter speed at 1/.250. You can also do this by panning in and out with your lens. If you want to freeze the action leave your shutter speed at around 1/2000 of a second.
Priority Mode – Priority mode lets you select and override which features of your camera are most important. It gives you full control of your camera from aperture to shutter speed.
I like to shoot on Aperture Priority. I like playing with the depth of field while creating images. Always keep an eye on something you have not seen before. Everyone has their style that works for them. Do what works for you.
Lloyd Mitchell is a photojournalism student. His main focuses are breaking news and humanities as well as crimes and fires. Lloyd also covers college and professional sports such as minor league baseball. He uses photojournalism to tell a story and to make a difference in his local communities at school in Buffalo and at home in Brooklyn.
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