Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ah-Lo-Ah-Lah Lola Lalalalalala Lola: Aperture

This is Lola.
No, she is not a show girl or a member of The Kinks. She is part husky, part shepherd, and maybe part wolf (I think). She is practically the love of my life. I adopted her from the Humane Society three years ago. She has not only become my work out buddy, the reason why my couch is covered in fur, but also my photography model.

I got a little ahead yesterday talking about white balance. Let's go back to the basics first. Aperture, the size of the lens opening in which regulates the amount of light source traveling through. A large aperture (f/5; small number!) reduces depth of field, blurring objects behind and in front of the subject. Meanwhile, small aperture (f/22; large number!) increases depth of field, bringing everything in focus.

Large aperture/small number = blurry background, object is the main subject
Small aperture/ large number = everything in focus, including background/foreground

One of the best things about DSLR is that I get to play around how I want an object to be photographed. Most of the time I am on aperture setting (I pick the aperture number) and the camera adjust shutter speed automatically. But which number should I pick? What's the difference between f/5 and f/10? Or f/15 and f/22? I am still experimenting with this, I would take pictures of the same object but changing the aperture number. Let me demonstrate.

Here are some pictures of Lola I took using large aperture:
f/8, 1/15, ISO 3200, +3EV

f/8, 1/15, ISO 1600, +3EV

f/4, 1/13, ISO 1600, +0.3EV

Then a trio of apertures:
f/22, 1/30, ISO 800

f/11, 1/125, ISO 800

f/22, 1/30, ISO 800

Can you tell the difference? I can't seem to decide which aperture setting is ideal for this scene. Maybe when I am more experienced...any advice?

Finally, I changed the white balance setting to Cloudy (to tie-in with the last posting). This gives the scene a "blue-y" and "winter" look.
f/10, 1/160, ISO 800

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