View Full Version : What IS the Best Aperature?

2nd December 2008, 09:15 AM
ni bagus utk mereka2 yang ..."no idea what works, what settings to use, why, where, when... :D

aunty zaing
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What IS the best aperature?

Truth is, there is no best, there is only what works, in the real world, for many different reasons.

When I started in photography, I, like many who start out had no idea what works, what settings to use, why, where, when...

.....it was all a big mass of confusion, but it didn't really matter, since I had the passion to keep moving on. It seemed the more academic stuff I learned, although mostly theory, the cockier I felt. Blame it on youth and innocence. Or, pure BS....

Many photographers have a 'favorite' aperature that they use often, for many reasons, mainly because they get great results, but there are variations and applications for using different settings at different times.

Let's explore a few.

Groups: I like to use somewhere in the 4.something to 5.6 range when outside.

Here's a sample of a recent group at about F4.5: http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS& ... DkX1BeCigQ (http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS&m=1gqTcoY8RPDwTH&b=SVa0mr5joE3MDkX1BeCigQ)

In the studio, all my sessions are shot at F16. Larger groups need more "depth" but not so much that I have to push it all the way to F16, like in the studio.

Why F16 in the studio? I would use F11, or even F8 and be happy with either/or. No real real reason other than at ISO 200, with my studio lights, F16 is functional. Go figure.

With larger groups outside, considering most of them are later in the day, or in open shade, I often need a tripod since I am slowing down the shutter speed.

The one exception to this is with smaller groups, I often use the 70-200MM, and shoot at F2.8 handheld, since that much of an opening allows for much faster shutter speeds. But mostly I like the look of a long lens, wide open, mucho depth.

Careful with this approach. You need all the people on the same plane so no one falls out of focus.

Here's two recent examples of smaller groups at 2.8 200MM: http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS& ... B6t7cRDE.A (http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS&m=1gqTcoY8RPDwTH&b=Ee4JbBsrE8p2B6t7cRDE.A)

http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS& ... gJ6ErMOmwg (http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS&m=1gqTcoY8RPDwTH&b=uLvItXQjd80IgJ6ErMOmwg)

I use 2.8 WHENEVER I CAN. That's my basic rule. It creates a great look. I use it on weddings, for candids (see this sample: http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS& ... ujiBddoKNQ (http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS&m=1gqTcoY8RPDwTH&b=XLvoBCEiGN72ujiBddoKNQ) ),

or just about any type of session, under most circumstances. I just really like it. I know greats like Yousuf Karsh used F4 quite a bit. He liked it and it worked. What you need to do is decide what works best for you.

On my 18-200 variable aperature lens that I use for travel, I still 'open' up the lens for similar effect. I even do this with my point and shoot, unless of course, you guessed it, I need more depth of field,(say a group shot at my daughter's Birthday party for example).

In a nutshell, wide open is my favorite aperature.

They say the sweetest, sharpest aperature is about in the middle of your lens betwixt the largest and smallest aperature. That's all fine and dandy, but I don't want to be limited to that 'theory'. I don't truly think there would be a noticeable difference in the final media.

You know all those sharness tests they create for photography magazine artcicles? Very scientific and accurate, aren't they? But who gives a horses pitoot if you can magnify an image area 500% and notice a teenie weenie bit more sharpness. Really. Who cares?

I don't. I know what works and what I like. That's what works best.

I hope this helps, and if you have any ideas or topics you would like me to dig into, email me: robprov@hotmail.com

I am in the midst of writting a new book called The Wizard of Light, in which I plan to delve into all things photography, such as the mechanics and equipment. Me thinks it will be about 300 pages of straight up 'whats works' content. I will announce it soon and make everyone a sweet introductory pre-publication offer when the date is near.

Cool beans?

Yours in photography...
Robert Provencher

P.S. Sign up with the biggest, baddest, no prima-donnas, no-whiners, no-egos photography forum. Check out our no-risk offer: http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS& ... BiaEmx4d8Q (http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=8A3VS&m=1gqTcoY8RPDwTH&b=gAd9lPjHUXs_BiaEmx4d8Q)

2nd December 2008, 10:36 AM
Thanks hanty Zain...artikel yg very simple and straight to Ampang point! :ymapplause: :ymparty:

2nd December 2008, 10:55 AM
soalan ni la buat saya menang moto aritu.. hehehe..

2nd December 2008, 01:05 PM
hanty always bring a good article to share. cani la kwanon ngeee :D