The Beginner’s Guide to The Exposure Triangle

14th March 2023

The Beginner’s Guide to The Exposure Triangle

The first step to being a successful photographer is to know your camera well. The better you know it, the more creative you can get while clicking your shots by tweaking and adjusting the settings of the camera to your advantage. One of the key things to understand and balance for capturing harmonious photographs is the exposure triangle – the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO.

1. The Aperture
The aperture is what controls the amount of light that is allowed to enter the camera. It is a set of blades that form a hole in the shape of an octagon which can be adjusted to shrink or widen in size. As you might have guessed already when you widen the aperture more amount of light gets to pass through the lens which is helpful in lowlight photography. And when the aperture is shrunk, less light penetrates making it easier to capture images in the very bright light.

Apart from this, the aperture of the camera also controls the depth of field meaning the sharpness of a photograph. So, if you want to take a picture with a soft, blurry background then you would use shallow depth of field, whereas, a sharper picture would require you to use the full depth of field. A shallow depth of field needs a wider aperture and a full depth of field requires a smaller aperture.

Aperture is measured in terms of f-stop value. Higher the f-stop value, smaller the aperture.

2. Shutter Speed
The shutter of the camera acts like a tiny screen or curtain which determines the duration for which light is allowed to shine on the imaging sensor of the camera. If the light is allowed to fall on the imaging sensor for a longer time, the image will turn out to be brighter. If the speed at which the shutter opens and closes is faster, then, the light is reflected on the surface of an image sensor will be for a shorter time resulting in less bright pictures. The shutter speed also helps in capturing moving objects and reducing the blur in the photograph. So, a camera with a higher shutter speed will capture moving objects with more sharpness and a lot less blur. Shutter speed is measured by judging the fraction of seconds it allows the light to fall on the imaging sensor. For example, 1/320 shutter speed means the shutter allows the light to shine for only 1/320th of a second.

3. ISO
The ISO is the software in a digital camera which controls noise and brightness of the photograph. Noise translates to the grainy texture prevalent in a photograph taken by a digital camera. A camera with a higher ISO like ISO 1600 or 3200 can take a very bright picture but also tend to create a lot of digital noise in the same, whereas, a lower ISO like ISO 100 or 200 will take much darker photographs but with a lot less grain.

This was just a very basic explanation of these features of a digital camera. If you wish to be a photographer, then you will need to not only understand and learn a lot about the exposure triangle but also practice taking photographs by tweaking them under professional guidance in an advanced photography classes in Delhi.