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Canon® EOS 60D: Digital Field Guide by Charlotte K. Lowrie

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Appendix A: The Elements of Exposure

If you haven’t used a dSLR before, then the options for controlling exposure on the 60D may seem foreign to you, and knowing when to use them to get specific results may seem overwhelming. But once you know how the elements of exposure work together, the camera will make much more sense. In this appendix, you learn how aperture (f-stop), shutter speed, and ISO affect your images, as well as how they work together. And if you are returning to photography after time away, the information in this appendix serves as a refresher on the elements of exposure.

The Four Elements of Exposure

Making a good picture begins with your creative eye and personal expression. The unique way that you see a subject or scene is the first step in making engaging and unique pictures. Then you use the camera to express how you see the scene or subject. While creativity is first and foremost in making images, you also need to have essential technical skills to use the camera effectively to express your vision.

While the technical aspects may not seem as exciting as the creative aspects of picture making, the more you understand what goes into making a photographic exposure, the more creative control you have. And creative control moves you out of the realm of getting a few happy-but-accidental images and into the realm of building a portfolio of beautiful-and-intentional images. A solid understanding of exposure also prepares you for when you need to find creative ...

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