Understanding your Camera: Modes to avoid

stockxchng-me_-gliding-stock-photo-by-plethrWe talked briefly in the previous articles about flash and metering modes you can use with your camera – but what about modes that you should generally avoid?  Obviously if a mode exists it means that there is some use for it but some are less important than others.

Special Effects and Color Filters

Many cameras have this feature, although they tend to appear on compacts the most.  These special effects could be anything from sepal to black and white, they can be mosaic or pain brush effects of special frames. Whilst they may be fun to play with it’s always a good idea to preserve your image as it is then add a special effect later in Photoshop.  Some cameras may give you a duplicate image when you are playing with effects but sometimes they don’t.  This means that you could ruin a shot and you are not be able to edit it alter on without losing quality.

Therefore try to avoid image manipulation unless you know for a fact that you won’t want to edit the image in question at all afterwards.

The same goes for corrective filters and tools – for example is there is an in camera shapermining tool. Its best to just capture the image as it is then deal with the editing element afterwards in a program as you can’t be sure of the processing quality in your camera.

Digital Zoom

4.    There are two kinds of zoom, optical and digital. Optical zoom is a real zoom – there is no loss to the quality from your image.  The digital zoom however is not a real zoom – it just crops the image to make it seem like its closer meaning you lose more and more quality the closer you get to the image.

It’s important, very important to check what your cameras capabilities are before you buy the camera.  If you know you want zoom them make sure it is the optical zoom that is faster than the digital zoom.  Avoid using digital zoom at all if you can – it will only result in a poor image in the end.

Preset Modes

Nearly every camera has them – present modes for certain conditions and situations such as ‘Night’ or “action’ or ‘macro’.  Therese modes may be fine when you are starting out but as you get better at what you do, make sure that you find out how to deal with every kind of condition without the help for your preset modes. Additionally, every camera has a different set of presets for different modes – it’s hard to predict your result and a good photographer should be able to take control of a situation.

This is easy to achieve in an SLR, whenever you may have a fully manual mode. You can adjust the settings more easily than in a compact camera where there are more restrictions on what you can do with your camera.  However, a compact camera usually has a ‘program’ mode which allows you to adjust things like the exposure, metering and so on so use this to learn how to deal with difficult conditions instead of relying on the camera to give you the best settings.



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