Reflections and Icons

FotoPosa carpooled to Yosemite National Park for snow shots.  Our group was supposed to shoot snow photographs in February, but due to the lack of snow in the valley, we had to wait until March.

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Look who welcomed us to the snow. 1/4000 sec. f/5.6 ISO 800

The morning was overcast and cold, but intermittent sunshine was predicted to brighten the afternoon.  We trekked through the snow down to the Merced River to take reflection shots.

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1/250 sec. f/11 ISO 200

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1/250 sec. f/11 ISO 200

The sun came out at just the right moment allowing us to get decent shots of Yosemite’s iconic landmarks.

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Fellow FotoPosans bring size into perspective next to iconic El Capitan. 1/250 sec. f/11 ISO 200

This turned out to be a lesson in learning the f-stop setting on my camera.  F-stop or aperture—the opening that lets light into the camera—has something to do with controlling the depth of field.  Depth of field is what’s in focus or blurred in an image.

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1/200 sec. f/11 ISO 200

To help myself remember f-stop, I think: depth of field increases with the number.  For instance, f11 will have more of the image in focus than f4.  To make matters more confusing, shutter speed and ISO work together with the f-stop to play a part in how the image turns out.  Knowing what each does is a start, but I still do not understand how to set them correctly to get the best photograph.

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1/640 sec. f/8 ISO 200

Honestly, I wonder if it will ever get any easier using manual mode.  I have to think hard about how to control the settings each time I take a photograph.

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1/640 sec. f/8 ISO 200

As I’ve mentioned before, trying to become a competent photographer does not come easily to me.  I guess the only way to know what looks good is to take lots of photos and play around with the settings.  I shot about 130 images during this photo shoot, most of which I deleted.

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Bridalveil Fall and Three Graces. 1/640 sec. f/8 ISO 200

This was a really fun outing with friends amid the snow-dipped mountains of Yosemite Valley.  I am so happy to have this group journeying with me as we learn photography.

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