Depth of Field & Shutter Speed


depth of field-4

I used some LOTR figures for my first attempt. Here, the aperture is f/5.6 but the lego in front is very in focus compared to the figurines in the back. I also kept Legolas off to the left a bit, and the two figurines off to the right. This way, I could see all three in the frame at once.

depth of field-5

Next, I shifted the focus to the figurines in the back. Same settings as before. Like I mentioned earlier, I can see all three figures in the frame at one time even if some are out of focus.

depth of field-1

Then, I ventured outside with more legos and placed them on this pillar ledge. The aperture here was still f/5.6 but I used the focus ring to focus in on the first lego.

depth of field-2

This next picture, I was trying my best to focus on the figure in the middle. The aperture was still 5.6 but the focus was on the middle figure. The first figure isn’t that out of focus but enough that I don’t see him as the main point.

depth of field-3

Same as before, the aperture stayed the same but the focus went to the dwarf in the back. I had a hard time getting the focus to be nice and clear on him.

Overall, working with depth of field was very hard because I couldn’t see the difference in aperture right away. I had pictures where I changed the aperture, but then the lighting wasn’t as good or I didn’t end up focusing right (though that is unrelated to the aperture).


shutter speed-1

Here is the first picture in the series. I adjusted the settings (ISO, WB, those things) before running the water, then turned on the faucet and started taking pictures with a slow shutter speed of about 1/50. The aperture was f/5.6. If I can remember correctly, I drew the curtains back over the window behind the sink (to let more natural light in).

shutter speed-2

Then, I moved the shutter speed to 1/200. Here’s where I made a mistake: I forgot to change the aperture as well. I did this for other pictures, but they weren’t better than these pictures.

shutter speed-3

This picture was taken at a shutter speed of 1/400, but it didn’t freeze that much motion unfortunately.

I didn’t feel the need to have the water be anywhere but the center, since my focus wasn’t on composition but lighting.

shutter speed-5

My next subject was the ceiling fan. What I did was turn on the fan and lay down directly under it. Then I adjusted the settings as I took pictures. My aperture was at f/7.1 here. The shutter speed was at 1/6 of a second. That’s slow enough to blur the motion of the fan, which moves pretty fast (at the speed of “is this going to fly off and kill me?”).

shutter speed-4

Next, I bumped up the shutter speed to 1/20 of a second, which is still pretty slow but will freeze some of the motion. The aperture was adjusted to f/5, trying to keep the exposure the same. I think it turned out pretty good compared to the last try.

shutter speed-6

Now, I didn’t completely freeze the motion, but it isn’t quite as blurred as the other two. The shutter speed was at 1/50 of a second and the aperture was at f/4.2. The exposure is slightly darker, but again, it’s better than the last attempt. With the running water, I couldn’t freeze the motion and have the same exposure as before.

poweder sifting edit-1

My next subject was my mom sifting powder into a bowl. To do this, I set up a tripod to its full height, adjusted the settings accordingly, then asked my mom to start sifting. In this picture, the motion is blurred. The aperture was at f/4.0 and the shutter speed was 1/15 of a second. It turned out pretty good, considering that I wanted the powder to look blended together. I decided to crop this picture down in Lightroom, simply because you don’t need to see everything in the background (obviously you still see some stuff, but there was more lying outside the frame before I cropped it).


Here is another picture where the motion is blurred. The settings were f/4.0 and 1/15 of a second. I did the same thing in Lightroom with this one, cropped it down.

poweder sifting-2

With this next picture, I didn’t realize that I was focused on her hand rather than the powder itself. I think I could have fixed that but I didn’t notice it at the time. You can see how the powder doesn’t look quite as blurred together as before. The settings were f/5.6 and 1/100 of a second.

Aperture, shutter speed, and exposure are definitely something that I need to work on more (and I will).



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