Top Questions about Photography

  • What is an aberration?

    Aberration refers to a distortion of quality or color rending in a photographic or digital image.
  • What is Ambient Light?

    Ambient light is any light that is immediately available and is naturally occurring in a scene. Ambient light is light without modifiers like flash bulbs.
  • What is an Aperture?

    The aperture is the size of the opening of the lens on a camera and is measured in f-stops. The aperture is responsible for determining how much light exposure an image receives.
  • What is Continuous Focus?

    Continuous Focus, or AI Servo, is the device on a camera responsible for allowing continuous autofocus, allowing a photographer the ability to move the camera without manually adjusting for focus.
  • What does Anti-Shake mean?

    Anti-Shake, or image stabilization, is a mechanism in a camera or camera accessory that counteracts natural movement so images appear more sharp and without blue caused by motion.
  • What is Autofocus?

    Autofocus refers to a camera's ability to manipulate its lens to keep the subject in relative focus.
  • What is Average Metering?

    Average metering is the process of taking all available light values such as highlights, mid-tones and shadows and averaging those together to create an exposure value.
  • What is Barrel Distortion?

    Barrel distortion refers to optical distortions due to digital images bowing out of square.
  • What is Blooming?

    Blooming is the appearance of a bright, colored halo around a brighter area in a digital image.
  • What is Blowout?

    Blowout is an overexposure of light resulting typically in a complete loss of detail in a digital image.
  • What is Bracketing?

    Bracketing is the process of taking several digital images in order to create set of exposure options. HDR is considered an advanced application of bracketing.
  • What is Buffer Memory?

    Buffer memory is the temporary RAM used for holding digital images waiting to be processed by the camera. The more expensive a digital camera typically the more buffered memory it has.
  • What is Burst Rate?

    The burst rate refers to how many consecutive digital images a camera can capture before completely filling the memory buffer or storage volume of a memory card or digital drive.
  • What is a Card Reader/Writer?

    Card readers and writers are devices that allow for the transfer of digital images in large sizes and quantities. Card readers typically are either xD, Compact Flash, USB or SD.
  • What is Chromatic Aberration?

    Chromatic Aberration
  • What is a CMOS?

    CMOS, or Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor, is a type of imaging sensor typically found in modern DSLR cameras.
  • What is a CompactFlash Card?

    CompactFlash or CF cards is a flash memory type of mass storage device primarily used in digital cameras.
  • What is Color Temperature?

    Color temperature is a linear scale that measures color of ambient lighting with warm light measured in low numbers and cool light measured in higher numbers.
  • What is a Colorimeter?

    A colorimeter, typically a hand held device that analyzes the color characteristics of a swatch of color.
  • What is Depth of Field?

    Depth of field, or DOF, is the measure of the available light in a background and foreground area and sits in front of and behind the main subjects in an image.
  • What is the difference between Digital and Optical?

  • What is a Digital Negative?

    A digital negative is a raw image format used for digital photography.
  • What is Digital Zoom?

    Digital zoom, unlike optical zoom, is a zoom that relies on software that crops a portion of a digital image and achieves a zoom. Digital zooms use no mechanical or moving parts in order to achieve.
  • What is a DSLR?

    DSLR refers to a device that captures digital images and contains only one lens reflex. DSLR stands for Digital Single Lens Reflex.
  • What are Effective Pixels?

    Effective pixels is the result of the measurement of number of pixels that have actively recorded a digital image on a sensor.
  • What is a Fill Light?

    Fill light is the source of light that is secondary to the main light used in a composition.
  • What is Focus?

    Focus means the process of a camera focusing on an object, either close by or far away. Focus refers to that part of a digital image that is sharp.
  • What is Firmware?

    Firmware is a combination of software and hardware that allows photographers to control features and functions of a digital camera
  • What is Focal Length Magnifier?

    A focal length magnifier is the angle of view (AOV) that a lens uses in a DSLR camera in relation to how it generally appears in a full-frame 35mm camera.
  • What is Four Thirds?

    Four thirds or 4/3 is a term used to describe a digital camera format that is designed around the 17.3 x 13mm imaging sensor.
  • What is Full Frame?

    Full frame is the use of the entire film gate at the maximum width and length for 35mm film and digital cameras.
  • What is Hard Light?

    Hard light is any light that is considered harsh or undiffused
  • What is a Histogram?

    A histogram is a visual representation of the exposure values of a digital image and are typically referenced using a graph.
  • What is a Hot Shoe?

    Hot shoe is a digital and film camera accessory that usually is located on the top of a digital camera and allows a photographer to mount and use an electronic flash. Hot shoes can also accept numerous other types of camera accessories.
  • What is Gamma?

    Gamma refers to the curve of brightness of the color spectrum as it is displayed on a digital monitor.
  • What is a Gobo?

    Gogo is any device, typically a reflector, or material used to keep unwanted light from reaching a subject.
  • What is the Golden Hour?

    Golden hour, often referred to as the 'magic hour', is the time right before sunset and immediately after sunrise.
  • What is Lag Time?

    Lag time, or shutter lag, refers to the delay that can occur between the pressing of the shutter button and the time it takes for the camera's shutter to fire.
  • What is Lens Flare?

    Lens flare is an optical aberration that occurs when light hits a camera's lens directly.
  • What is Lithium-Ion?

    Lithium-Ion is a type of battery that is typically used in digital cameras due to its high capacity and quick recharge rate.
  • What is a Long Exposure Shot?

    Long exposure is the process of leaving a digital or film camera's shutter open for an extended length of time in order for more light to hit the subject.
  • What is a Low-Pass Filter?

    A low-pass filter is a filter used with digital imaging that filters and suppresses aliasing and moiré.
  • What is a Macro Lens?

    Macro lenses are lenses that are typically used to take sharp pictures very close to subjects.
  • What is Matrix Metering?

    Matrix metering, also known as segmented metering, is the taking of the total image area and then breaking it into sections which are then analyzed by a digital camera's light meter and then compared to the available light values.
  • What is Metering?

    Metering is the process of measuring a scene's light using a digital camera's built-in system.
  • What is Moiré?

    Moiré is patterns that form in a digital photo and are a result of a digital camera's inability to distinguish between a pattern within the photographed scene.
  • What is NiCad?

    NiCad is a type of rechargeable battery used in digital cameras.
  • What is NiMH?

    NiMH is a type of rechargeable battery used in digital cameras.
  • What is Noise Reduction?

    Noise reduction involves the removal of artifacts in a digital image usually by increasing the available light in a scene.
  • What is Optical Resolution?

    The optical resolution is the resolution at which a digital camera can capture an image.
  • What is Overexposure?

    Overexposure is the result of an image capturing too much light and appearing washed out and details.
  • What is Panning?

    Panning is moving a digital camera while using a slow shutter speed when taking a digital image in order to create a blurred background.
  • What is Parallax?

    Parallax is defined as the difference between a digital image, as seen by a camera's point of view, and the image recorded by its imaging sensor.
  • What is Pixelization?

    Pixelization occurs when a digital image is enlarged and the pixels of that image no longer appear to blend to form a smooth image.
  • What is Pincushion Distortion?

    An optical illusion, pincushion distortion refers to parallel lines in a digital image that appear to bow inwards.
  • What is Red-Eye?

    Red-eye is the term used when a camera picks up the blood vessels in the pupil of a subject's eyes as a picture is being taken and usually occurs in low light environments.
  • What is Red-Eye Reduction?

    Red-eye reduction is an automated process of reducing or getting rid of red-eye caused by a camera's flash and low light conditions.
  • What is a Reflector?

    A reflector is a device used to reflect light to a specific location within a scene.
  • What is a Scrim?

    A scrim is a translucent device typically used to diffuse or soften light.
  • What is Shutter Speed?

    Shutter speed is the length of time a digital camera's shutter remains open when taking a photo.
  • What is Shutter Release?

    The shutter release is a button on a digital camera that, once pressed, will trigger the camera's shutter in order to take a picture.
  • What is an SLR?

    SLR, or single lens reflex, is any camera that uses a prism and at least one mirror to project an image onto a focusing screen.
  • What is a Soft Light?

    Soft light is any diffused light from a source that typically produces soft shadows and low contrast.
  • What is Spot Metering?

    Spot metering when taking a photo using a digital camera refers to the measuring of small portions of a whole image for selectively measuring key areas of a photograph.
  • What is Stopping Down?

    Stopping down is action of reducing a camera's aperture.
  • What is a Telephoto Lens?

    Telephoto lenses are large lenses, typically between 70 and 300mm that can be used to take pictures of objects far away but maintain detail.
  • What is a Time Lapse?

    Time lapse refers to the capturing of a series of digital images over a specified period of time.
  • What is Tonal Range?

    Tonal range is a term used to define an image's quality of color from shadow detail to bright highlights.
  • What is TTL?

    TTL, or Through the Lens, is a system of metering that determines the proper exposure based on measureing the light that strikes an imaging sensor.
  • What is Underexposure?

    Underexposure occurs when too little light exists to take an adequate picture using a digital camera and results in dark, detail less pictures.
  • What is a Viewfinder?

    A viewfinder is a system used for focusing and composing a subject.
  • What is White Balance?

    White balance is a digital camera's ability to correct the color and tint in variable lighting conditions.
  • What is a Wide Angle Lens?

    A wide angle lens is a lens on a camera that uses a wider field of views than a regular lens, allowing for more of a subject or scene to be included in an image.
  • What Does Wide Open Mean?

    Wide open refers to the technique of leaving the aperture completely open, or at its widest setting when taking a picture.
  • What is a Zoom Lens?

    A zoom lens is any lens that includes a variable focal length and a photographer typically adjust this length by rotating the barrel of the lens.