Quick Go To Camera Settings

Did you know old film photography camera settings still work in todays digital world?

Here are a couple of quick go to camera settings that are useful to have in mind when photographing two common scenarios.

Early Sunset F/4 Rule

When photographing a subject against a sunset, set your camera to manual mode with an f/4 aperture. (If your lens at it’s lowest F stop number only allows F/4.6 or a higher number, set that F number as your aperture.) Then choose a matching ISO/ Shutter Speed combination. For example, if you choose ISO 400, set a matching Shutter Speed of 1/400 second. If you choose ISO 800, set a Shutter Speed of 1/800 second and so forth.

The F/4 rule allows you to take the subjects photo without it being a silhouette. In the image below, the F/4 rule has allowed for beautiful sunset colors and nice light on the model. When using this technique, ignore the exposure line. If you had exposed for the sunset the model would have been darker than when applying the f/4 rule.

If you are hand holding your camera, remember to choose a camera settings combination that is faster than the length of your lens. For example, if you use a 70mm focal length, choose ISO 100 and Shutter Speed 1/100sec combination. If you are using 200mm focal length, choose the ISO 400 and 1/400sec combination to avoid camera shake.

Camera settings of f/4 in the early evening

Overcast Day In The Garden (sun completely covered by cloud / fog etc)

For these kinds of lighting conditions I use similar camera settings as previously with the sunset, the main difference being, I set an aperture of F/5.6 with a matching ISO / Shutter Speed combination.

Camera settings of f/5.6 for flowers on an overcast day

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