Gearing Up for a Plethora of Photo Ops


Dads, grads, and new pads. The coming weeks bring an avalanche of special photo opportunities, from graduation ceremonies to Father’s Day, weddings and summer moves.

If your camera has been hibernating for the winter, now is the time to wipe off the cobwebs and get shooting. For those of you who received a new camera for Christmas but have been putting off using it, the upcoming holidays and special events are prime opportunities to experiment. However, before you get snapping, it’s a good idea to acquaint yourself with your camera’s many modes.

For example, even if you don’t have an expensive DSLR camera, your picture-taking device likely features a portrait mode. By enabling it, the camera automatically selects a low f-stop (or aperture), narrowing the depth of field to soften the background. This allows you to focus on your subject while the camera blurs objects in the background.

Another useful mode is macro. This feature allows you to capture close-up pictures of small subjects, such as flowers and insects. It also provides the opportunity to create abstract images of large objects and gives you the option to document minute details without turning them into big blobs of blur.

Landscape and night mode are other common features on digital cameras. The former captures detailed scenes of large-scale objects, such as mountains or city skylines. Once employed, landscape mode works by selecting a high f-number, increasing the depth of field so objects near and far away remain crystal clear. With night mode the camera captures color and detail in low-light situations. The mode uses a long exposure, minus the flash, for vibrant colors despite the lack of light. The trick to maximizing this mode is to place your camera on a tripod before taking shots; by doing so you can avoid excess blurring.

Related Articles:

Shooting the Perfect Portrait

Telling A Story With Your Shots

Natural Framing

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.