Program Mode Explained: how to creatively shift aperture and shutter speed

Program Mode Explained: how to shift aperture and shutter speed for more creative images

How to shift the exposure

How to shift the exposure

f/2.8, 1sec

How to shift the exposure: f/2.8

This flower was shot indoors in low light. The camera, in Program mode, selected the largest aperture on the lens to give the fastest possible shutter speed. This is Program mode’s default approach when light levels are low.

However, the shallow depth of field created by the aperture of f/2.8 means that only a fraction of the flower appears sharp.

 SEE MORE: How to focus a camera: setting your AF mode, staying sharp and when to use manual focus

How to shift the exposure

f/16, 30secs

How to shift the exposure: f/16

A smaller aperture would increase the depth of field, but that would require a much slower shutter speed.

In this instance, that wouldn’t be a problem because the camera was on a tripod, so we rotated the control dial to enter Program Shift mode, and selected a small aperture/slow shutter speed combination. Note the overall exposure level stays the same.

PAGE 1: Program Mode Explained
PAGE 2: Working in Program Shift
PAGE 3: Using aperture and shutter speed in Program mode
PAGE 4: How to shift the exposure
PAGE 5: Program mode alternatives

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