Fundamentals of Photography

 

Lesson Info

DOF Preview & Focusing Screens

For those of you with SLR cameras most of you have the option of a depth of field preview button. When you look through the viewfinder the aperture is completely open so that you can see the brightest, easiest view so you can manually focus. But if you're shooting a picture at f/ it's gonna be completely different when that aperture stops down and you get a whole bunch more depth of field. So a long time ago professional cameras put on a depth of field preview button over on the side. It is now migrated all the way down to some of the entry levels, not all of the entry levels but some of the entry level cameras will have this little hidden button down on the side. And when you press it normally in the viewfinder you get this shallow depth of field look. Because that's what you're gonna see with the lens wide open. When you press it in it closes the aperture down and when you look through the viewfinder it's gonna give you a really dark image. Now most people who see this for the first ...

time, when you're explaining it to them, they always say the same thing, I can't see anything, it got dark. Let your eyes adjust, take a moment for your eyes, to pupils adjust and then you'll see that you're actually getting more depth of field. Do you see how much is in focus? Oh, I see it now, and so you press the button in, you wait for a second or two for your eyes to adjust and then you can see how much depth of field you're gonna get. Now back in the days of film this was really important 'cause you didn't know how much depth of field you were getting until you got your film back from the processor. Now with digital cameras this is kind of useless because if you wanna see how much you get in focus just shoot a picture and look at it. The fact of the matter is though, if you're using an SLR, it's hard to see the back of the camera in bright sunlight. And so for a landscape photographer who's got a lot of light that they're working with, it's nice to hit that depth of field preview to see if those flowers in the foreground are in focus with the mountain in the background. And so it's a handy little device. Now those of you with mirrorless cameras, you may want to do a little experiment. Don't take a picture of yourself but hold the camera pointed at yourself and press halfway down. When it presses halfway down some of the cameras will do an automatic depth of field preview for you. I believe Fujis will do this. So when you press halfway down, you hear a little noise, the aperture stops down. Other cameras don't stop down until the actual picture is taken and this may even be a feature that you can turn on and off on your camera. But you will get this as an option on some mirrorless cameras if you look for it in that manner. Now for those of you with SLRs and any of you that have very fast lenses, there is an important little secret change that has happened in cameras over the years when we went in to auto focus. The focusing screen in your camera, in past cameras, actually used to be replaceable and you used to be able to interchange it and you could exchange it for one with grid lines or had a special focusing mark on it. And there was also some ones that were brighter than normal. And you could change these but now there are no current model of cameras where you can change the focusing screen anymore, they've all disappeared from the market. What you get in the camera is it. And when we went to auto focus they had to change or they chose to change the type of focusing screens that are in the cameras. And it's because there was a new demand for these small, lightweight, slow lenses. And in order for them to work they needed to change the way these focusing screens were in the camera. And they made them more bright, less accurate. And so we traded accuracy so that we could actually see our subjects. I don't know if anybody remembers the old film cameras but if you remember film cameras with a slow lens, at that point it was like an f/4 lens, and you didn't get your eye right in the middle everything got really dark. The thing was, it was accurate but it was dark. And so now we're choosing brightness over accuracy. And what that means for the person who uses an SLR camera is that if you use a fast lens, anything faster than 2.8, the camera in the viewfinder will not show you the proper shallow depth of field that you are likely to get. So if you have a 1.4 lens you look through the viewfinder and you go, okay, yeah I see how much depth of field I'm gonna get and then you shoot it at 1. and you're gonna get even shallower depth of field. And so this focusing screen changes what you are seeing in the amount that you're gonna get by the depth of field. And so for anyone with a very, very wide open aperture it's gonna look different in the final picture than it does through the viewfinder. Take a look, do your own tests. It's true so check it out.

As a photographer, you will need to master the technical basics of the camera and form an understanding of the kind of equipment you need. The Fundamentals of Digital Photography will also teach something even more important (and crucial for success) - how to bring your creative vision to fruition.

Taught by seasoned photographer John Greengo, the Fundamentals of Digital Photography places emphasis on quality visuals and experiential learning. In this course, you’ll learn:

  • How to bring together the elements of manual mode to create an evocative image: shutter speed, aperture, and image composition.
  • How to choose the right gear, and develop efficient workflow.
  • How to recognize and take advantage of beautiful natural light.

John will teach you to step back from your images and think critically about your motivations, process, and ultimate goals for your photography project. You’ll learn to analyze your vision and identify areas for growth. John will also explore the difference between the world seen by the human eye and the world seen by the camera sensor. By forming an awareness of the gap between the two, you will be able to use your equipment to its greatest potential.

Lessons

Class Introduction
Photographic Characteristics
Camera Types
Viewing System
Lens System
Shutter System
Shutter Speed Basics
Shutter Speed Effects
Camera & Lens Stabilization
Quiz: Shutter Speeds
Camera Settings Overview
Drive Mode & Buffer
Camera Settings - Details
Sensor Size: Basics
Sensor Sizes: Compared
The Sensor - Pixels
Sensor Size - ISO
Focal Length
Angle of View
Practicing Angle of View
Quiz: Focal Length
Fisheye Lens
Tilt & Shift Lens
Subject Zone
Lens Speed
Aperture
Depth of Field (DOF)
Quiz: Apertures
Lens Quality
Light Meter Basics
Histogram
Quiz: Histogram
Dynamic Range
Exposure Modes
Sunny 16 Rule
Exposure Bracketing
Exposure Values
Quiz: Exposure
Focusing Basics
Auto Focus (AF)
Focus Points
Focus Tracking
Focusing Q&A
Manual Focus
Digital Focus Assistance
Shutter Speeds & Depth of Field (DOF)
Quiz: Depth of Field
DOF Preview & Focusing Screens
Lens Sharpness
Camera Movement
Advanced Techniques
Quiz: Hyperfocal Distance
Auto Focus Calibration
Focus Stacking
Quiz: Focus Problems
Camera Accessories
Lens Accessories
Lens Adaptors & Cleaning
Macro
Flash & Lighting
Tripods
Cases
Being a Photographer
Natural Light: Direct Sunlight
Natural Light: Indirect Sunlight
Natural Light: Mixed
Twilight: Sunrise & Sunset Light
Cloud & Color Pop: Sunrise & Sunset Light
Silhouette & Starburst: Sunrise & Sunset Light
Golden Hour: Sunrise & Sunset Light
Quiz: Lighting
Light Management
Flash Fundamentals
Speedlights
Built-In & Add-On Flash
Off-Camera Flash
Off-Camera Flash For Portraits
Advanced Flash Techniques
Editing Assessments & Goals
Editing Set-Up
Importing Images
Organizing Your Images
Culling Images
Categories of Development
Adjusting Exposure
Remove Distractions
Cropping Your Images
Composition Basics
Point of View
Angle of View
Subject Placement
Framing Your Shot
Foreground & Background & Scale
Rule of Odds
Bad Composition
Multi-Shot Techniques
Pixel Shift, Time Lapse, Selective Cloning & Noise Reduction
Human Vision vs The Camera
Visual Perception
Quiz: Visual Balance
Visual Drama
Elements of Design
Texture & Negative Space
Black & White & Color
The Photographic Process
Working the Shot
What Makes a Great Photograph?
 
 
 
 

Reviews

  • Love love all John Greengo classes! Wish to have had him decades ago with this info, but no internet then!! John is the greatest photography teacher I have seen out there, and I watch a lot of Creative Live classes and folks on YouTube too. John is so detailed and there are a ton of ah ha moments for me and I know lots of others. I think I own 4 John Greengo classes so far and want to add this one and Travel Photography!! I just drop everything to watch John on Creative Live. I wish sometime soon he would teach a Lightroom class and his knowledge on photography post editing.!!! That would probably take a LOT OF TIME but I know John would explain it soooooo good, like he does all his Photography classes!! Thank you Creative Live for having such a wonderful instructor with John Greengo!! Make more classes John, for just love them and soak it up! There is soooo much to learn and sometimes just so overwhelming. Is there anyway you might do a Motivation class!!?? Like do this button for this day, and try this technique for a week, or post this subject for this week, etc. Motivation and inspiration, and playing around with what you teach, needed so much and would be so fun.!! Just saying??? Awaiting gadgets class now, while waiting for lunch break to be over. All the filters and gadgets, oh my. Thank you thank you for all you teach John, You are truly a wonderful wonderful instructor and I would highly recommend folks listening and buying your classes.
  • I don't think that adjectives like beautiful, fantastic or excellent can describe the course and classes with John Greengo well enough. I've just bought my first camera and I am a total amateur but I fell in love with photography while watching the classes with John. It is fun, clear, understandable, entertaining, informative and and and. He is not only a fabulous photographer but a great teacher as well. Easy to follow, clear explanations and fantastic visuals. The only disadvantage I can list here that he is sooooo good that keeps me from going out to shoot as I am just glued to the screen. :-) Don't miss it and well worth the money invested! Thank you John!
  • Wow! John is THE best teacher I have ever had the pleasure of learning from, and this is the most comprehensive, eloquent and fun course I have ever taken (online or off). If you're even <maybe> / <slightly> / <a tiny little bit> interested in photography, take this course as soon as possible! You might find out that taking great photos requires much more work than you're willing to invest, or you might get so excited learning from John that you'll start taking your camera with you EVERYWHERE. At the very least, you'll learn the fundamental inner workings and techniques that WILL help you get a better photo. Worried about the cost? Well, I've taken courses that are twice as expensive that offer less than maybe a tenth of the value. You'll be much better off investing in this course than a new camera or a new lens. I cannot reccomend John and this course enough!