Common Photography Terms That Every Aspiring Photographers Should Know

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Learning photography is a lot of fun and it is all but necessary to know its various aspects of this profession. Photography is not about having a fully loaded camera and go about clicking pictures. You also need to learn about the presets of your equipment. So let us discuss the common photography terms which can help you better understand the nuances of the profession.

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  1. Aperture– This is the first common photography term you should learn. Simply put, aperture is the size of the opening in the lens. The lens is like a window which has to be controlled as large windows or wide angles let in more light, while small windows let in less light. Obviously, when the aperture is open wide, it will let more light into the image for a brighter photo, and if the aperture is small, it lets in less light. The measuring of the aperture is done in f-stops; a small f-stop like f/1.8 is a wide opening, a large f-stop like f/22 is a very narrow one. Aperture settings is one of the three vital camera settings that determine an image’s exposure, or how light or dark it is. The focus on the image is also determines by aperture. Also the focus on the image is also determined by aperture; while wide apertures result in that creamy, unfocused background, capturing image on narrow apertures keep more of the image sharp.
  2. Aspect Ratio– If you’ve ever printed images before, you’ve probably noticed that an 8 x 10 usually crops from the original image. That’s due to aspect ratio. Simply put, aspect ratio is the ratio of the height to width. There are various presets which are preferred by professional photographers and students digital photography courses online can learn. Aspect ratio can be changed prior to clicking pictures or you can crop your photo when you edit it to the right ratio for printing.
  3. Digital Vs. Optical– One must have a very vivid understanding of these terms when operating and buying camera. Digital is the effect created by software and not from the hardware of the camera. Hence, optical is a better choice than digital. These terms are used to describe when referring to a zoom lens (on a compact camera) as well as image stabilization.
  4. Exposure– It determines how light or dark an image is. The term originates owing to the fact that the image is created when the camera sensor (or film strip) is exposed to light. When an image is dark, it is considered underexposed, or it wasn’t exposed to enough light; a light photo is overexposed or exposed to too much light. What controls the exposure are aperture, shutter speed and ISO.
  5. ISO– The ISO determines how sensitive the camera is to light. A camera with an ISO of 100 means the camera isn’t very sensitive; it can be a good fit to shoot at daylight. One the other hand, a higher ISO means that the camera is very sensitive to light, so you can use that higher ISO for getting shots in low light. Higher ISO leads to grainy images and capture lesser details. ISO, along with aperture and shutter speed is adjusted to get a proper exposure.

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