Top Camera Settings To Avoid As A Beginner

Having a new camera is such an exciting feeling since it can bring new experiences to a photographer. It serves as a photographer’s companion in creating new adventures and a tool to enhance these photographic skills.

Some of the best achievement a beginner in photography can have are capturing the best image and make use of all the camera's features.

As a beginner, there are a lot of things to learn and achieve when it comes to photography and of course, the main goal is to capture the best photo. One of the most important things to do is to learn how to use the setting of the camera properly.


Different Kinds of Settings in a Camera

There are different kinds of camera settings that we must be familiar with. These settings will help beginners to properly set up and use their camera.

Camera Modes. A digital camera has different kinds of modes: automatic, semi-automatic, fully manual, portrait, night and movie etc. These are pre-setup buttons set already in a camera. These modes help you to choose the kind of photos you will take in different environments and scenes. The modes are helpful, especially for beginners.

Aperture. An aperture is a hole or opening where light travels. To better understand the aperture, think of it as a pupil of the eyes. The wider it gets, the more light it gets in. In adjusting aperture, this affects the light, the shot, and the focus.

ISO. Each roll of film in photography has a sensitivity rating that is expressed in number, and this refers to ISO. This number represents the sensitivity of the film to light. The higher the number, the higher the sensitivity to light.

Shutter Speed. This refers to the amount of time the shutter is open and the image sensor that captures the image you want to choose. Shutter speed, along with ISO and aperture is part of the exposure triangle, the three main settings you need to adjust to get the best photo.


How to Use the Right Camera Setting 

It is great to know that there are different kinds of camera settings, and it is also important for us to know how the right camera setting can be used. This is classified based on location, lighting and overall impact on the image. We also need to be aware of how a photo will look like once it is shot at different times of the day. 

Here are the following techniques and guidelines on how we can achieve the right setting for each photo.


Lighting and Different Times of Day 

Golden Hour. Golden hour is often referred to as the "Magic Hour." It can be seen during the first hour of sunrise and the last hour before sunset. The sun is usually low in the sky and produces a soft, diffused light which is flattering. The type of light during the golden hour is less contrast and reduces the chances of getting an image that has strong shadows and highlights. The golden hour is commonly applied to any outdoor photography.

High Noon. Downward lighting and harsh mid-afternoon rise of the sun may affect the photographer’s decision to not schedule any photoshoot on this time of the day. However, there are still professional photographers who can be very creative and produce high-quality photos during this time of the day.

Afternoon & Mid Morning. This is best for general photography, and it is because the sky cast and provide a slightly yellow and more indirect light that enhances skin tones and eliminates harsh shadows. There are no exposure issues, that’s why it's perfect taking photos of all sorts of subjects and scenery.  

Blue Hour. The period before sunrise and after sunset is often being described as the blue hour. It is also known as dusk, dawn or twilight. The direction of the sun rays comes from below the horizon, and the lighting is softer. It only appears in a few minutes, so a photographer needs to be fast when capturing photos during this period.

Nighttime. Since sunlight is completely absent during this period, it becomes a challenge for every photographer during the night. The absence of lighting can give an absolute dramatic effect in photography and in the images that will be produced. Customize camera setting gives justice to the beautiful nighttime photos taken during the starry skies.


Common Mistakes About Camera Settings

It takes a lot of practice when it comes to preparing for the right camera settings, especially for beginners. There are a handful of common mistakes by beginners, but through patience and practice, issues can be fixed immediately. Once you have learned all the camera settings and know the best setting to be used for the subject,  you will notice that photos will become sharper and of much better quality.

Missed Focus. Choose the right focus that can enhance the subject by either making it stand out more or blending into the surroundings. A simple way to make sure that you get the accurate focus to your camera is to choose your focus mode.

The Use of Image Stabilization through Tripod. Image stabilizer makes your photograph sharper. It will be also helpful to learn how to properly use a tripod to make the most of it in producing top-notch quality images.

Using A Shutter Speed That Is Too Slow. When the subject's in motion, it needs a shutter speed that is fast enough to freeze them. Having a low shutter speed will make your images look blurry. Higher shutter speed is needed for when the subject moves faster such as cars. This is to ensure that the best photo is captured.

The Shaky Frame. If the photos turn out to be blurry or not sharp enough it's probably due to slow shutter speed. You can increase the shutter speed to avoid this shaky frame.


Final Thoughts

Learning how to take quality photos comes with a lot of practice. It is achievable if you patiently take some time in getting familiar with the different camera settings. Beginners often make a lot of mistakes when it comes to finding the right setting for their camera. But, they should not worry because every great photographer starts with the basics. What they did is that they persevere and continue enhancing their passion and skills. Doing thorough research and applying what you have learned can also help to achieve high-quality images.