Camera Modes – The Aperture

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Camera Modes – The Aperture

Aperture refers to the size of the camera lens aperture when taking a picture. Aperture determines how much light hits the camera image sensor to “expose” the subject of the image.

To better understand the opening, imagine that you are in your bedroom and that the only light source is a single window. If the window is too small, only a little light can enter the bedroom. If the window is larger, more light can enter the room.

This is the case with opening your camera lens. The smaller the aperture, the less light can reach the sensor. The larger the aperture, the more light reaches the sensor.

The key is to make sure the right amount of light is allowed through through the lens aperture. If the aperture is too small and not enough light is allowed, the image is subordinated to excessively dark areas. If the aperture is too large and too much light enters, the image is overstated and bleached.

Aperture is measured in f-stops. These can be a bit confusing because the numbers are the exact opposite of what you would expect. Larger numbers, such as f / 22, mean that the opening is smaller. A smaller number, such as f / 2.8, means that the opening is larger.

When you put your camera in front of the aperture, you are checking the number f of the lens. As you set the number f, the camera will set the correct correct speed to hopefully get the correct exposure for the figure.

Why use the opening advantage?

Not only does the aperture determine the amount of light that enters the camera, but it also has a lot to do with the details of the image as well as something called depth of field. The larger the opening (remember, small number = large opening), the less detail is recorded. Also, the depth of field will be very shallow. Conversely, the smaller the aperture (large number), the more detail and depth will be recorded.

When you want a fuzzy background, such as in a portrait, you will use a large aperture. When you want a lot of detail, such as in a landscape, you will want to use a smaller opening.

Note that the larger the opening, the faster the eyelid velocity. Smaller spaces will necessarily slow down the shutter speed, and you may want to use a tripod to avoid blurry images.

Try putting your camera in one place and taking lots of pictures with different apertures just to see how the image changes. You will see great differences, especially if you photograph something close to you.
You can definitely take control of the final result of your image after learning more about how to control the aperture and shutter speed settings.


People don’t just want clear imagery. Though my photography skills have yielded clear imagery through practice, I’ve come to understand the importance of creating imagery that can capture or exceed the brilliance of seeing something in person. On my Patreon you can get such practice on my photos.

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