Saturday, March 17, 2012

Pre Shot Check List - Bring Home a Banger

English Bay - Epic Vancouver, Nikon 10-24 mm lens F14 @ 30 sec. iso 100
ND Grad 3 stop Hard.
English Bay - Sun Stare Sea Wall, Nikon 10-24 mm lens F14 @ 1/8 iso 100
ND Grad 3 stop & 1 stop Hard stacked.
English Bay - Battle Ship Bay Vancouver, Nikon 10-24mm lens F22 @ 15 sec. iso 100
ND Grad 3 stop Hard

The Quick Pre Shot Check List

1) Compose The Shot - Find your composition
- use the rule of thirds and leading lines.
- also try getting low and filling the foreground with something interesting like rocks.
2) Set Your Focus Point
- set the focus point over the object for accurate focus.
- set the focus towards the middle of the frame for wide angle landscape shots.
3) Select your F-Stop
- for a blurred out back ground set the desired focus point and use the widest aperture such as F2.8 - F5.6
(the look gets boosted with a telephoto (long) lens also allows for a fast shudder speed)
- when you want the largest area of accurate focus (longest Depth of Field) use a small aperture such as F16 - F22
(this works great for getting that great focus from the very front all the way to infinity in landscape shots also allows for a slow shutter speed)

4) Meter The Shutter Speed
- If in manual mode use the light meter and set the line in the middle to achieve your exposure.
- use exposure compensation (one stop over one stop under) this way you can choose your favorite exposure.
- use aperture priority mode and set the F-Stop and the camera will set the shutter speed.
- use time/speed priority mode and set your shutter speed and the camera will set the F-Stop.
- use a fast shutter speed to freeze action (125th - 2000th of a second)
- use a slow shutter speed to show movement such as milky looking water falls (60th - 30 seconds)

5) A Note On ISO
- use a low iso number like 50-200 for most shooting conditions.
- use the lowest iso number when decreasing shutter speed.
- use a high iso number like 400 and up when in need of a faster shutter speed such as low light hand held shooting.
- image gets grainy at high iso numbers on some cameras.

6) Take The Shot!!

7) Check The Histogram
- look for nice even spikes towards the middle and spread nicely across the histogram.
- look for clipped high lights and lost detail in shadow area.
- adjust exposure and re shoot if needed.

8) Zoom in to 100%
- once you have taken the shot zoom in to 100% to check for sharpness and focus.

Check out your photo!!


  1. Gorgeous shots! My favorite in the last one. I'm just starting to learn how to do long exposures. Do you ever take any during the day? I know I need to buy an ND filter to do that.

    1. Thanks so much, I posted a comment on your blog. I do with a polarizing filter and I have the 10 stop ND on my wish list.