Digital Photography â€“ Is Your Camera Stuck on Auto?
Most digital cameras are supplied with a confusing array of buttons and icons that access different programs. The average user has no idea what setting to use for which picture and the camera stays on AUTO mode.
The camera instruction manual is designed to tell you how to set your camera to a particular program. It is not, however, written to advise you when or why a specific program should be used. By getting to know these programs, you can achieve excellent results without needing much technical knowledge.
Start by checking the camera instruction manual to establish how to access different shooting programs.
This is shown as a small flower symbol on your camera. Use this shooting mode when you want to take close up pictures, perhaps of flowers, insects or butterflies. You will need to move your camera lens very close to the subject you are photographing, which can be easier said than done for insects and butterflies. The important factor is not to cast a shadow over your subject and it is less likely to move.
This will be accessed through a small symbol of a head on your camera. Portrait mode enables you to soften the background automatically when taking photographs of people, so that the focus is on the faces of your subjects and not the setting in which they are sitting or standing. It is most successful if you use this mode for one to five people at the most, and they should be grouped together very closely. You will achieve a more pleasing outcome to your picture if you arrange a small group of individuals into a loose triangular shape.
Landscape or Scenic Mode
This mode is shown on cameras as the shape of a mountain and should be used when you want to take a photograph of a landscape. The camera will capture both the foreground detail as well as the background perfectly in focus. This is also a very useful shooting mode to use when you want to take pictures of larger groups of people, for example at a wedding.
Night Mode with or without flash
Shown as a head with a star above it, the night mode on a compact camera can be useful, but is rather limited compared to using manual settings. However, if you donâ€™t...