The process of photography is the process of capturing light.

The camera controls how much light is captured in three different ways:

  • Use of the aperture
  • Use of the ISO
  • Use of the shutter speed
  • Filters and Flashes  (can be added to your camera to increase or reduce the amount of light available at the time.)

If you are just beginning as a photographer, your camera likely has an automatic setting that will control your light conditions for you and allow your camera to take the best picture possible at that given moment.

But once you have become more experienced, you might want to begin controlling many of the photo optic conditions yourself.


The aperture affects the depth of the field that your photograph will have available.

A shallow depth … means that the subject focused on in the foreground will be clear, but the background will become blurred.

A deep depth … means that the subject focused on in the foreground- as well as the remainder of the content of your picture- will be photographed as clearly as possible with your camera.

  • For the blurred effect – use a larger aperture.
  • For a clear (I want to see everything) effect – use a smaller aperture.


Apertures work through a system of numbers called f-stops. The f-stop is a fractional equivalent to tell you how much light is being allowed into the iris of your camera’s lense.

  • f/1.4 – this is a very large hole for light, thus giving you a very bright picture.
  • f/22 – this is a very small hole for light, thus giving you a much darker picture.

I suspect the following video will help clarify things for you.

Written for Photography and On-Line Tours for Learning.

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