Part 3 of the magic triangle: ISO settings
The Magic Triangle
I'm going to tell you why
- Have you taken photos at a party and discovered they were all blurred, not just because you had downed several beers?
- Or think a newborn's eyeballs would melt if you use flash?
This is why you need to understand ISO because it can get you out of some sticky situations.
Warning: I'm not going to make this technically hot, just simply understood.
ISO controls how much data or light your sensor records.
Low ISO = accurate detail
High ISO = less detail (warning-may produce NOISE)
NOISE = made-up pixels to fill in the gaps that your sensor missed=not great
at high ISO, and if you need this, they are worth every penny.
This Auricula was being buffeted by a stiff breeze. You couldn't tell. To freeze the image and get everything in focus I set the ISO to 640 the aperture to f16, the camera set the shutter speed to 100 s, rendering the shot perfectly. This set is going to be featured in The Garden 2015.
Grain is good, noise not so much.
Let me recall one final story for you. I was tutoring a photography group shooting summer flowers outdoors. It was a gusty day, not ideal. Fred, was frowning at a beautiful rose. He had set his ISO to 100-great for crisp, detailed shots, but impossible in a force 4.
Me: 'Why don't you increase the ISO?'
Fred: 'Because, you don't get really detailed shots.'
Me 'How many shots are you getting now?'
The lesson: Ignore ISO at your peril.
Photography is a balancing act. But now you know better. Enjoy practicing, it really does make perfect.