I love how a photo can look completely different by what your shutter speed is set at. Shutter speed is the speed at which the shutter of the camera closes. It is usually fractions of a second. For example, 1/30 shutter speed is one thirtieth of a second. It can make or break a photo.
There are two reasons I change the shutter speed — 1) brightness or 2) to freeze action or blur motion.
When I want to change the brightness of what I am shooting, I will change the shutter speed if it doesn’t compromise the quality of the photo. If my subject is a still item such as a product sitting on a table I will set up my tripod, connect my camera to it and then change the shutter speed until I have the proper brightness. My tripod stabilizes my camera so that there isn’t any shakiness that one would get from holding the camera. If my subject is a moving object such as a person, I do not like my shutter speed to be any lower than 1/125. If I tried to shoot a portrait photo of someone at a shutter speed of 1/30, the person will be blurry. The higher the shutter speed, the less of a chance your subject will be blurred.
However, there are times where you actually would want to blur your photo. The perfect opportunity for that is when shooting a waterfall. Don’t forget your tripod! You will not be able to do this without it. Remember, your tripod keeps your camera stabilized. The low shutter speed blurs the motion of the water in the waterfall and creates a magical photo. Review my waterfall photos below to see the difference. First photo is with a faster shutter speed. Second photo is with a much slower shutter speed.
The above photo has a higher shutter speed so that the camera keeps up with the speed of the falling water. It’s the same thing for a sports photo. If your child plays soccer, you need to have at least 1/500 but honestly I like it at 1/1000.
This photo is so beautiful. I love how the water is blurred. It’s all in preference though. Whatever choice you make, just be sure your shutter speed is either really fast or really slow, not in between or it will look similar to photo 1 except the water droplets will be out of focus. and not so pretty.
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2 thoughts on “Shutter Speed Tips”
Thanks for the tips! I love the blurred waterfall as well.
Thank you Honey!