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Photography Cheat Sheet?

I'm just starting out with my Nikon D5100... I have no idea but all you G+ photo people inspire me so... The settings are still very confusing to me.. So I came across this little cheat sheet.How good is it?

You might need to click the image to read some.. its pretty "tall".

#photography #nikonD5100
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123 comments
 
I just bought the exact same camera too! did you get the deal with the extra telefoto lens?
 
Thank you Amanda :D
 
Being able to see whether or not the image turned out or not right away also helps. ;)
 
Best way to improve is shoot, Notice the changes and shoot some more taking those changes into account and then shooting some more! Have fun! :)
 
+Amanda Blain yeah that's a good one. Luckily with digital cameras you can experiment to your heart's content and not "waste film".
 
I turned Auto ISO On on my camera, and use P mode most of the time, S 100(or higher) to freeze a subject. To isolate a subject with a big aperture, you might need to get a prime lens (50mm f/1.8 is a great to do that)

I don't worry too much on technical details, I focus more on composition. A technically sound photo with nothing interesting going on is pretty boring.
 
It's all about angle, framing, lighting, and unposed subjects.
 
I do hear the "just keep shooting things" a fair amount.. but then im forgetting what settings i shot on.. and i also had no idea that certain things would produce lighter or darker... Guess im kinda visual to see it person.. Maybe thats why I like G+ so much O_o I'll keep shooting though.. :)

+William Wells yuppers... extra lens... still no idea what im doing.
 
I'm going to have to give this a whirl with the vintage '43 Kodak camera I have sitting on the shelf at home.
With no training whatsoever (Just dropped some B/W film into it and guessed), I got some pretty decent vintage shots from a WWII Re-enactment I attended...
http://goo.gl/fr3SW
I was astonished when I got the prints. I thought they definitely had a "war correspondent" thing going on, when it was really just an "I got this camera yesterday" thing. =)
 
I still experiment all the time...that's what makes photography an art form it's ever changing!
 
Pretty good although I think it's missing tips about shutter speeds as far as stopping action vs long exposures for "smoothing" effects. Although now that I'm writing this post I see that it could be just a problem of trying to word it the right way.
 
+Amanda Blain here's a good trick ... Lightroom, iPhoto, and Aperture all can let you see the settings for a photo. So you can go back and see what the settings were. Even better you can do it on your iPad right away!
 
I took a class of classic photo (B&W 35mm) at the Community College I graduated from. That class was worth every penny because not only do they explain how these settings determine one another, they gave me lab time too (professional darkrooms are not the cheapest things).
I found it easiest to start with ISO and go from there.
 
I'm pretty new to photography and have only recently got an old digital SLR looking forward to playing with this card. Thanks
 
Just buy J1, this camera is amazing, and low cost.
is Nikon J1
 
+Don DeCaire advice is good, but +Amanda Blain will want to download Picasa to manage and view your pics on big screen, so you can better observe the effects of changing aperture and speed. Start by setting it to "Auto", then bring your camera with you wherever you go, and shoot away.

Upload the pics from your camera to Picasa, view each picture on big screen, and note the metadata information of each shot, displayed by Picasa on right column. Don't obsess with the technicals, just enjoy the occasional shots that really stood out, and delete the 'duh' ones. After a while, you will get a sense of what aperture and speed functions do.

Then, you can experiment by switching from "Auto" to "A" for aperture. Take pictures at different aperture settings and note the background. You will begin to see some pictures will have a nice blurry background that you like. It is called "bokeh", and soon you will appreciate what aperture settings do to change the "mood" or "depth of field" of a picture. So the same for the "S" or speed settings, only, try this out in a sporting event. Photography is one helluva personal enjoyable past time, and when you get a great shot and share it, you will feel really good about yourself. Enjoy, and I apologize for the long post.
 
That's definitely a handy little pocket guide to help remember all those little details.
 
I agree with +Chee Yow and I greatly appreciate his "Start by setting it to "Auto", then bring your camera with you wherever you go, and shoot away." advice.

So very true. I take my digital Canon camera with me literally everywhere I go. Even if I just take my dog for a walk, I've got my camera on me.

You learn this lesson eventually, due to missed opportunities. Several weeks ago, a jet airplane flew over my house so low I could have thrown a potato at it and hit almost.

It was truly bizarre. It was at night and I could actually see the guys in the cockpit and the plane was all lit up from its lights. I called the airport and asked them WTF was going on. Got an evasive reply of course.

If I had a photo of that jet, I would have an amazing picture.
 
+Amanda Blain Even "simple" tools like Picasa lets you see what settings you used for a photo. (It's stored as exif information in the image file, and most photo-viewing software can show that information)

Depending on which camera you have I'm pretty certain you can attach your camera directly to your Android tablet and have all photos show instantly on the tablet for a portable big screen to see your photos on.

One problem with learning to take good photos is that you have to keep on doing it, or else you just forget everything you have learned... :-)
 
+Runar Bell - So true! I am trying to break myself of the Auto presets on my Canon and trying to learn to use manual settings. I will tinker and play, get a couple decent shots and then completely forget what I did to get the shot.
PJ R
 
I needed this!! nice! nice! did I say NICE!!
 
+Eric Branch exactly my problem as well! So I have basically given up and shoots most of my photos in P/Auto ;-) (Although the Sony alpha-77 has some interesting features in Auto+ as well)
 
I am new in this world i need a trusted friend to mentor me
 
That is great always work with your camera incase.
 
That chart is good and all but it doesn't really tell you anything - it is like a ruler, if you know what you are measuring it makes more sense.

I haven't really taken pictures since 35mm was the ruling camera of choice, but here I go...


I miss the days of taking pictures outside in the summer with ISO 100 film - that was beautiful color and pictures. AND no more Kodachrome :(
is there even an ISO on a digital camera? i thought that ISO was a film characteristic. high iso film is a lot more sensitive to light, but it gets grainy fast - it also can get hazed by airport xrays.

Some simple rules I keep in my head:

* shutter speed = how long is the apeture open.

You can't hold a camera steady (by hand) if the shutter speed is slower than about 1/30 of a second (and 1/30 is pushing it).
If something is moving, you will probably need something faster than 1/30 of a second to 'capture' it.

* f/stop ~= how much light the camera lets in while the shutter is open. also how much is in focus.

a big f stop lets in more light so you need less shutter speed to capture the same image. BUT...
if you have a big f stop (like f/2) ONLY what you have focused on will be in focus


Using big f/stops makes what you have focused on the focus of the picture - everything closer OR farther away will be blurry.

If you use a small f/stop, mostly everything will be in focus, but you will need a longer shutter speed to get enough light to be able to get a good photo of your subject.

* You have to trade focus depth for light and vice versa. You can have both light and focus depth, but then NOTHING can move or you will see 'ghosts'
REALLY old school cameras only had a big f/stop so that is why everything is out of focus that the camera wasn't focused on. Closer or farther away is out of focus.

Note that all of these things that appear to be rules can be used to create neat effects if used effectively.

You might want to throw a polarizing filter on that lens too. taking out the 'crooked' light makes better pictures!
 
+Shane Corning 's solution of taking a photo class is the best idea. I knew someone that developed his own color and b/w film and he mentored me on my picture taking.
 
This is a very practical and useful #cheatsheet for #photographers who are in the beginning phases of their career, or for the easy going enthusiast looking to capture the perfect moment.
 
Everyone already said everything. The chart is basically correct but you need to know it by heart and understand it. In short, practice makes perfect.
 
lol, a bit more complex with film , but digital just set on auto at first then play with settings and see the result
 
I suspect you'll find that the cheat sheet is information you'll have internalized very, very quickly. The way I suggest that most people get started is to start by using Aperture Priority (A). That means you select the aperture, and the camera will select the speed. Controlling the aperture means that you get to control the depth of field; the larger the aperture (meaning the smaller the f/ value) the smaller the range of distances that things will be in focus. This is often a good thing; for example, if you have a lot of clutter in the background --- for example, a wedding reception at a hotel ballroom --- you can keep your subject sharply in focus, while keeping the rest of the photo nicely blurred so that the viewer focuses her attention on the what's most important. This also means you don't have to worry about the rest of the visual elements being perfect; just the subject of interest.

In other cases you may want to keep multiple objects at different distances from the camera in focus; in that case you will need a smaller aperture (meaning a larger f/ stop number). Note, however, that if you use too small of an aperture, your pictures may end up getting degraded due to diffraction. This is mostly an issue with DSLR's, where you should try to avoid f/ stop values greater than f/8 -- f/11. It's less of an issue on point-and-shoots, because the small sensor means it's almost impossible to avoid diffractive losses anyway.

As far as the speed is concerned, the reason why I suggest letting the camera select the speed is that unless you are doing sports photography (in which case you might need a fast speed to "stop" the action of a fast-moving subject), shutter speed doesn't matter as much, as long as the shutter speed isn't too slow. A good rule of thumb is that the speed should be faster than the reciprocal of the focal length of the lens in 35mm equivalent. So if you are using a 50mm lens on a Nikon D5100, that's has 1.6 magnification factor and so it has an effective focal length of 80mm. So you will want to make sure the shutter speed is at least 1/80th of a second or faster. Whether it ends up being 1/100th or 1/200th doesn't really matter unless you are doing sports photography.

If it's too dark and the camera tells you it needs a shutter speed slower than 1/80th of a second, then you will need to use a tripod or some other way of stabilizing your camera so you can minimize camera shake bluring your picture. Or you could use a larger aperture, but that means reducing for depth of field, which might or might not be acceptable.

If it's a very bright day outdoors, it's possible that for a given aperture value, the required shutter speed is faster than what your camera can handle (1/4000th of a second is the fastest shutter speed on a D5100), so you might need to use a smaller aperture. This has tradeoffs, though --- if you're worried about diffractive losses or you want a tight depth of field, you may need to use a Neutral Density (ND) filter to reduce the light entering your camera, so you can continue to use wider aperture.

A slightly more advanced topic is what happens if the camera misjudges the exposure. In general the camera will try to adjust the exposure (in aperture priority mode, you control the aperture, so the camera will adjust the shutter speed to compensate) so that the average brightness across the entire photo is equivalent to 18% grey. However, if you are taking a picture of snow field, then it's supposed to be mostly bright white, and you may need to tell the auto exposure system that you want to "over expose" the picture, so that the result looks (on average) more white. On the opposite side, you may be taking a picture where everything is supposed to be relatively dark (say, a picture at twilight), and you don't want the camera making the picture look too bright. So in that case you might tell the camera to "under expose" the picture by half a stop or a full stop of light.

See? Simple!
 
That's great! It's a great reminder, especially about fstops.
 
That's a beautiful object and a lovely chart. :)
 
Just got the same camera. I love it!!!
 
Good if you aren't familiar with manually setting these.
 
+amanda blain you might start to follow #jphotonotes former Jaiku users chat there about photography, share ideas, tips and tricks. :)
 
The Digital Photography Book vol I by Scott Kelby- easy and very good book when you starting with good camera, highly recommended. If you invested in good camera get the most of it.Have fun.
 
It's a good guide, and a good camera :) i've got the same one, and I looooove it. have fun experimenting!
 
How do I disable the "hot on g+" postings, like yous?
 
I find it interesting that the ISO rating of the film goes up to 3200. I remember 800 film and heard about 1600 film, but did not know that 3200 film was common enough to put on a chart.
 
Bill the D5000's ISO goes even past 3200 and the next setting after that is HI. Just depends on the maker, I guess.
 
how cool, I just got my Nikon D5100 too a week ago. This is great! thanks for sharing it. Anything helps when you're a beginner. =)
 
+Kaz Szydlo click the "Hot On Google+" link in the header above the post, and adjust the slider that appear next to the "What's Hot" title
 
Now take the camera of "green zone" and go for it girl !!
 
It's a pretty good cheat sheet :) Wish I had it way back when!!
 
+Kaz Szydlo :click on the "?" on the upper right of this post and all will be revealed.
 
Goodness.. some great tips in here.. thanks everyone :) will have to check them out
 
+Amanda Blain It's actually very good! The B on the left of shutter speed is 'Bulb': manually opening AND closing the shutter.

Looking forward to seeing some photos:)
 
About: "but then im forgetting what settings i shot on." Google for exif -- all the settings used by the camera get saved as part of the image. Many tools can display these for you find one for your system. Also set the clock and date on the camera. You can match notes to the date-time stamps saved in the EXIF info.
 
Omg so useful! And it's based on how bright the image can/could be: yay for that! 
 
It's a nice sum up, but it misses the "sunny 16" rule to make sense.

The sunny 16 rule is the relationship between speed, aperture, and iso, and it is usually spelled : outside on a bright sunny day with no clouds in the sky, when the aperture is set at 16 on the lens, the correct speed for normal exposure is 1/iso.

The more clouds, the more you open the aperture or/and you drop the speed.
 
Two great web sites, Ken Rockwell and Thom Hogan, lots of great info, read up and get out and "burn film"
 
Awesome! I just got a Canon Rebel T3, this will make things easier to get acquainted with it.
 
These are fundamentals. If you understand these then you are as good as a pro. Photography is all about craeting moods with light. Watch the following clip to know more about seeing light.
Photography Lighting Lesson - Remember the EGG
The picture you have posted displays the tools for controlling light
 
Only way to win is to cheat
 
For shutter speed, you may wish to add for slower shutter, a tripod or more steady hand is necessary.
 
Good luck to you. #yessirr
 
Very Well Explained manual settings of camera, it was really helpful for starter like me
 
eheh great cheat sheet!!!
 
Won't it be nice if every gadget has such things.Thank you Amanda.
 
Is there also an Instagram Cheat Sheet? :-)
 
I'm starting with Nikon 5100 too. Keep going. :)
Noze P.
 
it looks very simple, which is good to explain some things. Have fun +Amanda Blain :)
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After all the research and practice I ended up using the "Auto" setting :)
 
Some time, the auto setting needs tweaking...
 
thats like the bible of digital photography, cram it girl :)
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