31 Days: Day 3

So I have to get through a little bit of photo basics as best I can.  Sorry to all of you who aren't beginners (check this out to be cheered up).

As for myself? I learned to use my camera by messing around. a lot. So I really need to review these things too. Knowledge is power as they say.

Another thing in this post you might hate, and I kind of already hate myself for saying it but...
you should read the manual for your camera. Especially if you're a first time DSLR camera owner or you've just upgraded to any kind of camera that allows you more control.

I wasn't going to say anything, but then I started reading my manual. yesterday... I know that's so bad... but the good news is there's some really great stuff in there that might be specific to your camera that you should know!

Ok, I'm sorry (and I'm still sorry for those of you with experience) because we're going to talk about ISO! International Standards Organization! Pronounced "eye-so" not "eye-ess-oh"!

ISO tells you "how sensitive the sensor is to the amount of light present."
Higher ISO = more sensitive to light = good for low light situations possibly
Lower ISO = less sensitive = good for areas with tons of light possibly

(I say possibly because you might want that washed out or super dark effect, I don't know)

ISO 100                                              ISO 200
ISO 400                                              ISO800
ISO 1600

WARNING: Higher ISO can give you "noise" on your image. Noise is that grainy look that's not too pretty (unless you're going for that - no judgement here).

So why would you care? Because, inside pictures often have less than desirable lighting. Adjusting your ISO can help get a brighter image in a darker room. Take my examples, ISO 200 looks most like the actual lighting in that corner of my living room, but I like the brightness of ISO 400. 

Ok enough technical babble for today. I tried to make it as painless as possible. We have a little more to go, so bear with me all of you with camera know-how. If you do have know-how, be sure to let me know if I forgot something important! We'll get to some fun stuff about staging and framing a shot too :)


  1. Read the manual? Well, I'm not that kind of girl... :D I've read before about ISO and it really makes a difference! Great tip!

  2. Wow, this really shows the difference..great job.

  3. yes, thank you for the great tip, i liked how clearly you displayed the differences. i've always been in a basement suite and it's hard to brighten things up without using the flash.

  4. this is great! we've just moved into a new home and i'm *trying* to take photos for the blog and to send to family etc...i'm so excited to see these tips!

  5. Yay! Thanks for the positive feedback everyone!

  6. I have never heard it called "eye-so" before. But I am kind of old school, ISO replaced ASA and so was always pronounced as just the letters. Interesting how things change over the years.

  7. Oh how loverly! This tip will help so much on those numerous cloudy days to come!