Taking Your Photography to the Next Level
Once upon a time, long before digital cameras and program modes, there was manual mode. In those days it wasn't called "manual mode" because there were no other modes. It was just photography. If a photographer didn't have a handle on the basics of aperture and shutter speed, she'd produce a lot of discarded film. Now, thanks to the powerful computer in your camera, many of the decisions about how to balance those two factors are computed in milliseconds—but only if you choose. The other side of the Mode dial contains the Creative shooting modes, which offer the greatest amount of control over your photography. You can let the camera figure out the values automatically but with input from you; set the aperture manually and let the camera figure out shutter speed, or vice-versa; or, go back to the old ways and dial in your settings manually. Whatever your choice, it's essential that you understand not only how to control these modes, but why you are controlling them. So let's move that Mode dial to the first of our Creative modes: Program mode.