Time of day
Not every beautiful scene always looks really beautiful. Moreover, as a rule, we must make a lot of effort, show patience and observation to show the subject in its best…

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Genre household photography
A genre of photographic art dedicated to everyday personal and social life (usually contemporary to the photographer) is called household photography. Transmission through the camera of everyday life - there…

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Genre household photography
A genre of photographic art dedicated to everyday personal and social life (usually contemporary to the photographer) is called household photography. Transmission through the camera of everyday life - there…

Continue reading →


Shutter speed or, as it is also called, shutter speed is directly related to the transmission of motion in images. When shooting still subjects with a fixed camera, the shutter speed does not matter and is determined only by the required exposure. But when either the camera or the subject is in motion, choosing the appropriate shutter speed becomes not only a technical but also an artistic task.

Not to get confused: the higher the shutter speed, the shorter the exposure time than a shutter speed lower the shutter speed longer.

Wiggle or grease
Let’s start with the camera movement. As a rule, this is not what you want to capture in the picture. It is not always possible to shoot with a steady tripod, and as soon as you take the camera in your hands, their trembling causes blurry images taken at low shutter speeds. What does low speed mean? There is an old rule that the longest shutter speed, which allows you to shoot with your hands without an obvious “wiggle”, is the opposite of the focal length of the lens. For example, if the FR of my lens is 50 mm, the shutter speed should not be longer than 1/50 s. If you are using a camera with a crop factor, the maximum shutter speed should be the reverse of the equivalent focal length. Details can be found in the article “Safe shutter speed when shooting with hands”.

This rule is very conditional. All people are different: someone’s hands shake more, and someone’s hands shake less. Hand tremors are affected by fatigue, health, camera skills, overall fitness, and more. It is when you finally see a stunning scene and are about to photograph it that your hands can tremble with excitement in the most treacherous way, although right now you need an iron grip.

You should empirically determine for yourself safe shutter speeds under various conditions and avoid too low speeds in the future.

One thing is certain-the shutter speed will always be inversely dependent on the focal length. Telephoto lenses increase the image, but they also increase the effect of vibration on the image quality. The same applies to permission. The higher the camera resolution, the more noticeable the image will be at long exposures.

The optical image stabilizer is a very useful invention. It can be embedded in the lens (Nikon VR, Canon IS) or in the camera body (Sony SSS, Pentax SR, Olympus IS). The pair of exposure steps that the stabilizer helps win back from the shiver will never be superfluous.

A rare case where moving the camera at a low shutter speed can be useful is shooting with wiring (panning). The essence of this technique is that the camera moves synchronously with the subject at the moment of exposure. As a result, the movement of the camera compensates for the movement of the subject, and the latter turns out to be relatively sharp in the photo, while the background is blurred, emphasizing the speed and giving the image dynamics. For shooting with wiring, a shutter speed of 1/30 s is good.to enhance the effect of movement, you can try 1/15 s, but this requires more experience. If the object is moving very quickly, which is typical for mechanical transport, running people and flying birds, then a shorter shutter speed is appropriate.

Cyclist. Wiring.
The cyclist is removed from the harness at a shutter speed of 1/15 s.
How to catch a moment?
Shutter speed of 1/1000 s stops almost any movement. Higher than 1/2000 s shutter speeds are mainly needed not by photographers, but by manufacturers of photographic equipment in order to more effectively sell new cameras to a consumer who is avid for technical innovations. 1/500 sec is enough to shoot a cyclist; 1/250 sec is enough to stop a person running, and 1/125 sec is enough for a person walking at a fast pace.

Tree leaves fluttering in the wind can ruin a picture taken at less than 1/60 s.

When shooting sedentary animals, you will in most cases need a shutter speed of 1/125-1/250 s. to catch the fastest and most rapid movements, it may take 1/500 s. an Animal sitting still can be removed from 1/30 s. it is Much more difficult to get close enough to it. Usually, the minimum shutter speed will be limited not only by the movement of the animal, but also by the focal length of your lens, and the lens may need to be long.

Note that birds and reptiles move in jerks. Their movements are separated by micropause. Try to use these moments to get a clear image.

The view of flowing water in the photo changes strikingly depending on the shutter speed. At an exposure time of 1/500 s, the water freezes completely, and every sparkling drop that hangs in the air becomes visible. The surface of the water seems as hard as the rocks on which it breaks. The most natural images of water are obtained at an exposure time of 1/30 s. the water Jets are slightly blurred, which gives it softness and allows you to separate it from the stationary elements of the landscape. 1/8 C gives the water a special fluidity, emphasizing the movement of individual jets that go around obstacles. 1 C smears all the details of the stream, contrasting with the fixed rocks and driftwood that now seem particularly sharp. Long exposures, up to a few minutes, turn the water into fog, creating fantastic, unseen landscapes.

Fast shutter speed
Shutter speed in 1/320 sec.
Long exposure
Shutter speed in 1/4 sec.
To stop the movement or to emphasize it?
Decide for itself. Modern photography focuses primarily on stopping traffic, on instant exposures that freeze the scene and allow you to view details that are indistinguishable in real life. However, as we can see from the example with water, long exposures, when used wisely, have no less visual potential, allowing you to effectively separate moving objects from stationary ones.

When photographing the edge of a forest, you can wait patiently until the wind subsides to prevent the branches of trees from smearing, or you can, on the contrary, expose the same landscape for a few seconds and turn the trees swaying in the wind into an army of ghosts.

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