Basic photography tips you can use on your next road trip

By Nikka Garriga

QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA--Owning a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera nowadays comes in almost as easy, thought comparatively more expensive, as having a point-and-shoot camera.

But unlike the latter, a DSLR offers way more room for experimenting and exploring when it comes to the art and science of photography.

The DSLR is also becoming the camera of choice if you want to take good photos whenever you’re travelling.

Here are a few tips from esteemed photographer and Canon Brand Ambassador Mark Floro on how to acquaint yourself and maximize the full potential of your new gadget:

Read your manual. This allows you to learn just exactly what your camera can and cannot do. More importantly, it gives you an idea on how to properly use it without relying on the AUTO settings.

Know your camera’s settings. Bad photos, according to Mark, are the result of wrong settings or extreme shooting conditions that tend to confuse your camera. Figure out which buttons to fiddle and what it means so you can sync the proper settings for every particular shoot you wish to do.

Take note of the three basic areas of photography. The ISO measures the sensitivity of your camera's image sensor. You'll know it's the ISO setting if it indicates 100, 400, 800, etc.

The shutter speed refers to the amount of time your shutter is open to capture an image. DSLRs have preset settings, such as 1/8, 1/15, 1/60 etc, to also help control exposure levels.

The aperture determines the amount of light that goes in your camera--the larger the size of the lens' opening, the more light and vice versa. These are measured in f-stops or f/2.8, f/4, f/22 etc.

“These are the three basic elements that control light. Learn how each one of them functions. One you know how they work, everything will follow,” Mark says.

Learn how to correct your mistakes. Even an expert like Mark committed errors while learning the ins and outs of photography. “My first few semesters back in school were what I considered failures; really horrible shots,” he shares. “But what's important is that you learn and you act on it.”

Read, read, read. There are forums and websites that offer tips and advices particularly for first-time, budding photographers or photo hobbyists. While shoot, shoot, shoot helps in the practical sense, there's no harm in reading up on the experiences of others to hone your skills.

***

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