Use of shutter speed photography is essential for taking high motion shots such as sport, high speed, or any other form of movement you can consider.
With a good understanding of it, your action shots can be crisp and clear, or full of motion blur and other effects. Depending on what you want to do, this form of photography can be very effective.
Shutter speed photography forms part of the trinity of the exposure triangle. Along with ISO and aperture settings, shutter speed is another way of controlling the amount of light to hit the camera sensor.
In simple terms, it is the amount of time that light is allowed to pass through and arrive at the image sensor. It can be a fraction of a second, to many seconds, perhaps even hours.
If you are at a sporting event, shutter speed photography will be your main focus of attack when taking photos.
Once you have set your ISO to the environment you are at, then you will want to focus on your shutter speed.
You can be in full manual mode, or if just starting out, switch to Tv or T mode depending on the make of your camera.
In Tv or T mode, the camera will calculate the appropriate aperture setting based on the ISO setting you have and how you change the shutter speed. This will result in a properly exposed image.
You can use shutter speed photography in a couple of ways. For example, you may wish to show the movement of water. A popular way of doing this is waterfall photography.
You’ve probably seen hundreds of these shots and often wondered how the water looks like an often illuminated, smooth texture.
The answer is simply that the photographer has chosen to photograph the subject over several seconds.
Now to do this, you have to use a tripod, as it is very unlikely that you will be able to stay steady enough to hold the camera for that amount of time.
In contrast, you can also use shutter speed photography to capture a high action activity in the moment.
For this, you will need to set a very fast speed, so that the shutter opens for a fraction of a second and captures that very moment.
You won’t need a tripod for this because there is little chance of any camera shake affecting the image at this speed.
The result of this use of shutter speed photography is a very crisp image that is all in focus and no motion showing.
If you are shooting the night sky, once again, shutter speed photography comes into play. As you’ve probably guessed, a long shutter speed is required for this, to allow sufficient light into the camera.
Taking photos of the stars can be a very creative way of shutter speed photography.
Put your camera on a tripod, set a small aperture size (large f stop number), a reasonably low ISO setting, and a long shutter speed.
You will need to experiment a lot to achieve the result you desire, it may even take several nights of playing around, but the final result can be spectacular.
Imagine your resultant image showing the actual movement of the stars over several hours as the earth rotates. This is just another example of how you can utilize shutter speed photography.
As you can see, shutter speed photography is a very important part of the exposure trinity, and once understood well, can lead to some exciting and creative photos.