Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Your Guide To Camera Modes
Get better images more easily with your digital camera’s pre-programmed settings
Labels: Learning Center
A long exposure of several seconds or more is often required for night shots. This raises quality issues of which you should be aware. Digital camera sensors are particularly susceptible to noise problems during long exposures. The sensor must remain active for the duration of the exposure, which generates heat. This heat, in turn, can cause pixel errors that show up as grain-like irregularities in the image. Some of the more advanced cameras have technologies that help reduce noise in long exposures, but no camera is yet immune to this problem. So, if possible, try to include a lot of ambient light in your night photography, or choose to compose your shot with objects in the foreground that can be illuminated by flash to add light to the exposure.
Night Portrait. Some cameras offer a Night Portrait mode in addition to the standard Night mode. Night Portrait uses a long exposure to capture the ambient background light and a reduced-intensity, slow-sync flash with red-eye reduction to softly illuminate the subject in the foreground. This gives a pleasing balance between the flash and existing light. A tripod is important in this mode, as you want the ambient light to be as sharp as the subject illuminated by your flash.
Beach & Snow. The often bright, reflective and contrasty environment at the beach or in snowy landscapes provides an exposure challenge for even the most sophisticated metering system. It's easy for the meter to be fooled into "thinking" that the scene is much brighter than it really is, which in turn causes the camera to underexpose the image. This mode will compensate for the abundant ambient and reflected light by slightly overexposing based on the meter reading.
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