The rush and bustle of the holiday season is a pleasant memory.
Now you have some time to look at that new camera. Whether you are a seasoned photographer or just starting the journey, there will be things to learn. For the purpose of this instruction, we are assuming you have a digital camera.
We're going to give you a step-by-step plan designed to get you up and running.
As you open the box, you will find an owner’s manual and, often, a “quick-start” guide.
Your camera needs a charged battery and a memory card. When these are in place, you are ready to start making photographs.
If you are brand new to photography and want to get going quickly, look for the “Auto” setting.
A successful photograph depends on a proper amount of light. Your new camera has an amazing computer. It will measure the light in your scene and set the camera for a good exposure. With some experience and knowledge you may learn to override the camera’s computer and make your own artistic decisions.
Depending on the type of camera, you may be able to adjust shutter speed, aperture (f-stop) and ISO (sensor sensitivity). Be curious and experiment. It’s all about the light.
Another “setting” is focus. Again, look for the setting for auto-focus. As you look at your scene through the camera, you will see a cursor.
Generally, whatever that cursor is in the scene, will be the point of focus. Some cameras give you the ability to move the cursor around, instead of being in the center of your scene. As you become familiar with your camera, you may find you want to focus on a subject that is really close.
Look for a “macro” setting. This setting will allow the camera to focus on subjects that are very close. If you use this setting, remember to return it to auto-focus, when you are done.
Following these suggestions will get you started. It will be up to you to put the story into your pictures. We are often asked, “What is the best camera?” Our answer is always the same, “The one you have with you.”
Don’t be bashful about carrying your camera. You never know when you will come across a wonderful photograph. Photographs memorialize thin slices of time, that will never happen again. Photographers learn to observe in very different ways. Your photographs will be uniquely yours.
Bob Gibson, of Blue Water Photography, and Jeri Knudson, of JAKS Photography Studio, may be reached at 541-994-3405.