Basic Camera Set-up: The First Step to Quality Creative Photography | Warren Marshall | Skillshare

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Basic Camera Set-up: The First Step to Quality Creative Photography

teacher avatar Warren Marshall, Passionate Photographer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Starting from Scratch


    • 3.

      The Body Tour


    • 4.

      Tour Continues


    • 5.

      Cards and Batteries


    • 6.

      How your Camera Works


    • 7.

      How to Hold Your Camera


    • 8.

      Setting up Menus


    • 9.

      Camera Care


    • 10.

      Your Project


    • 11.

      Wrap up


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About This Class

Ty Lou said. "Thank you so much for this amazing series on photography, it is has been the most useful tutorials I have ever watched on photography on Skillshare and you taught me things that have bugged me for years."

Photography is an amazing pastime, hobby and profession, but like most worthwhile things in life it takes time and care to perfect.


Learning how to set up and control your camera is the first step in the process. Making sure that you are shooting the best quality files that your camera is capable of, adjusting the camera’s settings to personalise the use of the important features all goes to improving your images.


Modern cameras are very complicated. In this class you will learn the initial settings and adjustments to simplify your image making. We will give you the “tools” to begin your photographic journey.


You will learn:

The most useful features of your camera

Setting up your menus for best quality

Adjusting your dioptre for clearer viewing

And much more…


This class is the first of a series that will teach you the correct and logical way to master your camera so you can go on to more advanced techniques and understand them more easily.



Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Warren Marshall

Passionate Photographer


Hello, I'm Warren Marshall.

I am owner and head photographer at “Imagine Studios “ in Newcastle, Australia.

I am also owner and principal of “Newcastle Photography College”.


I have been a photographer for the past 40 years and a full-time professional photographer for the past 26 years.

I am passionate about image making. I also have a thirst for learning new techniques and love experimenting with my photography.

Our studio specialises in people photography from Weddings, Portraits, Headshots, Glamour, Lifestyle, etc.



In my time I have photographed many celebrities, politicians and entertainers but it is the average people that I enjoy working with the most.

See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Good day. My name is Warren Marshall. I'm a professional photographer from New Castle, Australia. And in this class I'm going to show you how to set up your camera properly to take good quality photographs. When you buy a new camera or you acquire a camera. It's the setting up of the menus and the understanding of the features of the camera that will make it much easier for you to achieve good results. We're going to run through the important things on your camera. Have a bit of a tour of your camera and explain the particular things that really make a difference. Cameras nowadays have very complicated. So we're going to break it down to the easy steps, the things that you're going to need most often. And I'm going to explain to your head a set up your menus properly so that you achieve the best results straight away. Now there are a lot of things involved in photography. We're going to go on to some of those in future classes. But this is the first one to understand how to set up your camera properly. And to understand a little bit about how your camera works and what things you need to produce great photographs. 2. Starting from Scratch : Basically, what do you have an SLR camera, a mirrorless camera, or even a compact camera or a bridge camera. There are numerous different types of cameras around nowadays that we can control. And then we can use properly to produce the results that we want. So it doesn't really matter what sort of camera you have. Basically all it is is a light-tight box with a lens at one end and your camera sensor at the other end. As photographers, we've gotta get the right stuff through that lens onto that sensor to make your images look the way we want it to look. Now there are four main things we've gotta get right to produce a good photograph. The first one is we have to get the correct amount of light into that lens, onto that center. So a picture looks the way we want it to look, not too bright, not too dark. This is called getting our exposure correct. And we're going to talk about this more extensively in a future class. The second thing we've gotta get right to produce a good photograph is get the focus correct. We need to have our subjects sharp. Whatever's the most important part of our image, needs to be the sharpest focus point. So again, we're going to talk about that in subsequent class as you follow us through. The third thing that we have to get right, which we cover later on in our photography classes, is the composition. Composition is the art of placing things within your frame. Making a photograph look interesting. Getting rid of all the rubbish that doesn't have to be there. And including the things that are important to tell the story of your photograph. And the fourth thing we have to get right is the lighting. Because lighting is very important to us as photographers, because all the photograph is, is light reflecting off things. So if we can understand how to use that light, sunlight, open shade, room lighting, flash, any of these light sources that we may need to produce our photographs if we understand how they work and how to manipulate them and how to control them, are photographs are going to look so much better and we're going to be much more creative in our photographic pursuit. So moving on, we're going to have a bit of a tour of their camera and explain the important things on their cameras. These things have very complicated. Every brand, every model are going to be slightly different. So you may have to search a little bit to find these particular features on your camera. But I'll explain them in a generic sense so that all of your cameras will have these features and you'll be able to recognize them when you say them. So if we have an SLR camera or a mirrorless camera, we have the facility to be able to remove air lens, change our wins, put on different lengths. We can use wide angles, we can use telephoto, has some compact cameras simply have a zoom lens that you can zoom in and out and cover the broad range that we would normally have if we're having an SLR camera with a few different lenses. So that's one advantage of having a DSLR or mirrorless camera. So on our lens of air camera, we have a few features. First of all, we have our zoom ring, which allows us to zoom in and out. Bring your subject closer or further away. Include more of a subject or less of it. So that says Zoom. It's usually the wider band does on air lens that allows us to do that. We also have a manual focus ring, which allows us to focus manually if we want to. There's often a switch on the side of aliens or inner camera body that allows us to switch from autofocus to manual focus. And when we're on manual focus, we use our focus ring on air lens to focus our camera. Now, obviously there are other options depending on the brand or the model of camera that you have. But for most cameras, this is the way to go. You're focusing maybe on the front of your lens, or it may be at the rear of the lens, just depending on the lens that you have. Now, as I mentioned before, we often have autofocus or a manual focus switch on the side of airplanes or in their camera body. A lot of lenses also have a image stabilizer switch on the side of the lens, often inside the camera body as well, depending on if your image stabilizer is in your lens or in your camera body. Now the image stabilizer is there to help us prevent camera shake. Camera shake is the single biggest problem people have with digital cameras. When we're taking the image, we're not holding completely still. An image is a little bit blood because our cameras not still at the time we took the photograph. The image stabilizer will electronically helped to stabilize that picture so that you don't get so much chemistry. It's not going to work if you shaking your camera around like this, but a little bit of movement, it can really help. So I leave my image stabilizer on most of the time. The only time I turn my image stabilizer off is generally when I'm using it for a slow exposure at nighttime. So if I'm using a slower shutter speed of maybe five seconds or so at night to capture the scene that I want to. If something moves within that frame of an image stabilizer will try and follow it and I end up with a blurry picture. So I generally turn my image stabilizer off. If I place a camera on a tripod. So our image stabilizer and auto-focus manual focus switches can be either on the side of the lens or in the camera body. 3. The Body Tour : On your camera body, we have our shutter release button, which allows us to take a picture. It also generally allows us to focus our auto focus. We can push it halfway down and that will focus our image. And then we can take a photograph. There are, there are various otherwise that we can focus that we'll talk about in later classes as well. We have on the top of your camera, we have a exposure mode dial. Now the exposure mode dial has various different exposure options for us. Now remember, exposure is the art of getting the correct amount of light into our camera. So I pictures not to brighten, not too dark. So we'll run through some of these in a later class and tell you what all of these are. We've got a hot shoe on the top of your camera that allows us to attach a flash or other accessories to our camera. There are contacts on top of here, electronic contexts that allow the flesh to talk to the camera and the camera to talk to the flesh. That's why often different brand fleshes don't fit off-brand cameras. We can get generic fleshes that will work on multiple different types of cameras. But generally speaking, a flesh for one particular brand won't work on the other one because these contexts are slightly different. We have a pop-up flash that allows us to pop up their flesh whenever we want to. This little pop-up flash on their cameras is handy. It's not particularly powerful and the light is not particularly fantastic, but it's great to have it there if we need it. And you can be reasonably creative with your pop-up flash if you think about it and you'll learn to use it properly. If you want your pop-up flash to pop up when you wanted to, you need to be on manual on this exposure mode dial. So turn it around to him. And there should be, on most cameras, there should be a little lightning bolt button or a flesh button on the front left-hand side you can push that will allow your flesh to pop up when you want it to. When you're on any of these other auto modes, on your exposure mode dial, your flesh can pop up even when you don't want it to, because the camera thinks that you need flesh, which can be a little bit irritating at times. On the back of your camera we have a few buttons, a few shortcut buttons. Now these are things that we might find in the menu as well, but they're things that we might use often like white balance, ISO, image quality, things like that. They varied between camera brands. So we can just push that button, get to that menu quite quickly without getting into our menus and scrolling across and scrolling down to find a particular feature. We have a garbage bin or trash can button on the back of your camera to erase images. I generally advise people not to use that because I have seen a few people do it quite quickly and end up erasing everything on the card. There are a couple of files, safe things in here that we have to confirm before it will erase an image. But some people do it very quickly, particularly if they're used to doing it a lot. And I pushed the wrong button at the wrong time and things disappear. So my advice is to leave the rubbish shots on your camera and then delete them off the computer. Once you've uploaded them. 4. Tour Continues : Now moving on with their tour of their camera, we have a viewfinder here that allows us to look through and take their photographs. My opinion is that you're better off to use the viewfinder to take your photographs because you can hold your camera more still than you can in live view. In live view, it's quite difficult to brace yourself to hold that cameras still. So you do have a bit of camera shake issue. But with that viewfinder, you can hold your eye against that viewfinder. Tuck your elbows into your ribs and you can get a much more stable camera platform so the camera shake is less of an issue. Now, most cameras up next to your viewfinder, there's a tiny little dial. This little dial is your diopter adjustment. Now, your diopter adjustment is there to adjust the optics inside your viewfinder to suit your eyesight. Even if you have 20, 20 vision, it's handy to adjust this DOI after adjustment so that you can see through your camera more clearly. Now it doesn't vary the sharpness of your photograph. All it does is change the optics inside here so that you can view your photograph much more sharply. Now, if you look through that viewfinder to adjust the diopter adjustment, you look through your viewfinder at something. You focus on it with your autofocus or your manual focus as best you can. And then you get your finger on that little dial and you turn it up and down. It's usually a number of clicks. And there'll be one position there that looks sharper than any other. Now the reason why it's quite difficult to get to is once you've established that diopter adjustments sitting, you leave it there. You may revisit it every six months or 12 months or so. Or if you notice that there's someone sharpness through that viewfinder. But generally speaking, you don't change it very often. And one piece of advice that I'll give to you, if you share your camera with somebody, don't tell them about it because they're going to be adjusting it to their site. And when you go to use it, you're going to have to do it all over again. So keep it a bit of a secret. We also have a screen on the back of your camera's LCD screen is fantastic, particularly when we're learning photography, because we can see our image on that screen and we can see the results that we're getting. It's not a perfect representation of an image because you'll often find when you upload your images to your computer, they look a bit different. They may look a little bit darker, a little wider, slightly different color, but at least it's close enough so that it can give us a reasonable idea of if we've been successful with their exposure or we need to try again. So that's a great benefit of our screen. Screen also has a number of different modes that we can use to help us establish exposure much more critically, which we're going to talk about in future classes as well. We also have navigation button on the back of your camera to scroll through our menus. We have a thumb wheel or a fingernail that allows us to change settings and scroll through various different things. Some cameras have to, they have one on the front, one on the back. Some cameras have one on the top and another one on the back of the camera down here. So it just depends on your camera. You need to consult your manual just to see where these features are and how you can use them on your specific brand of camera. 5. Cards and Batteries: Moving on, now, we also have memory cards. A memory card is a really important component of your camera because this is where all of your photographs are stored. So don't skimp on the quality of your memory card because they do fail. Cheaper ones tend to fail more often. Memory cards that have good brand tend to last well, I've never had a problem with a memory card, but I know a lot of my photography friends have, so treat them very carefully when you're inserting them or taking them out of your camera. Do it very carefully and slowly. Don't do it forcefully. Be careful not to get them whip or drop them. Although I have had a photographer friend who had his SD card goes through the washing machine and he was still able to extract the images from it. Nothing I would recommend. But it has happened in the past. Memory cards come in different capacities. We can get them to hold lots and lots of photos or less photos. I tend not to go for the really big ones because they tend to fail more often because they're on the edge of the technology. So the failure rate is a little bit higher. I tend to come back a little bit too middle of the range. Cards, which are very big anyway, because Cards nowadays can hold a lot of photographs, so that's adequate. My cameras aren't particularly big and huge files, so I'm happy to have mid-range capacity cards. Some cameras have two cards in their card slot so that you can use them in various different ways to double up on your photographs, to copy them in case your card files. Or as an overall overflow, you can have one card full and the other one will start to record. Some cameras will record two different file types on the different cards. It just depends how you set up your menus. Cards also come in different speeds. The speed of the card is how quickly the camera can write the image to the cart. So if you do a lot of continuous shooting, if you do a lot of wildlife for sport photography, a fast card, maybe a better option for you. They are a little bit more expensive, but a fast card will allow you to do that continuous shooting to the full capacity of your cameras capability. So a fast card can work for some people, I tend again to go from middle of the range ones because they don't do a lot of continuous shooting, but I want a little bit of capacity there if I do need it one day. So be careful with your cards. Make sure when you insert them, that they ran the right way and just insert them very gently, make sure they're all. Although I am also tended to have a couple of spear cards because if you do take your cardiac to load your images onto your computer and forget to put it back. You don't want to get to the beach the next day to take photos and you've got no memory card. So keep a couple of spare ones. I replaced mine every 12 months, but I shoot thousands of shots are weak, so my cards do get a bit of a pounding. Your cards may not be as as busy as that. So our replacement every 12 months, I write the date on it when I bought it so that I can replace them every 12 months. But I keep the old ones just for spares in my camera bag in case I need them. We also have batteries in the bottom of their SLRs. Batteries in SLRs don't generally develop memories, so we can talk them up every night when we get home from photography assignments. That allows us to have a full battery all the time. Now one issue with that is that you often get to the beach the next day and the batteries on the charger at home. So again, it's handy to have a spare one. You can get them quite cheaply. A spare one, keep it in your camera bag, keep it topped up all the time. Just for those situations where your batteries not with you at the time. 6. How your Camera Works: As I mentioned earlier, your camera can be thought of as a light-tight box with a lens at one end and you'll sensor at the other end. It's a light capturing machine. Essentially. We need to get the right stuff through that lens onto that sensor to make your picture look the way we want it to look. I'd like to explain to you now how your camera works, which is going to make it easier for you to understand the principles of basic photography when we get into them later on. Now, a DSLR camera stands for digital single-lens reflex. Now with a DSLR camera, we have the light path coming through the lens onto a mirror, which is inside the camera body in the mirror box. That mirror is there to reflect that light coming in through the lens up into the V fonder so that we can see exactly what our cameras looking at. Now that mirror reflects the light up into what we call a painter prism. The pent-up prism is in this top section of your camera. Pent-up prism means five mirrors or five prisms. Now what that means is the light coming up from that mirror after it's passed through the lens is bent by those five mirrors or prisms to be around the correct way and the right orientation so that when we look through a viewfinder, we can see exactly what your camera sees. Generally, a lens will invert and reverse an image. That's when a lot of old cameras, the image was inverted and reversed, but they are pent-up prism allows the camera to invert and reverse that image so that it looks the same through the viewfinder as it does through the lens. Now that's a great system because we can see straight out through aliens. It's called an optical viewfinder. We're looking at exactly what your camera sees when we look in through that view, Fonda. Now, when we take a picture with a DSLR camera, that mirror flips up and then it exposes our shutter. Now the shutter is in behind that mirror. And as soon as that mirror pops up, our shutter opens up and allows the light to come through onto the sensor in the back of the camera to expose our picture. Now, it's a very complicated process and it's a very quick operation. The mirror flips up and the shutter opens just a fraction of a second later. So the clicking that you can hear when you press the shutter is the mirror flipping up and the shutter opening to allow that exposure to happen. Now, a mirrorless camera works in a similar way except it doesn't have a mirror. Surprise, surprise. Now, in a mirrorless camera, the light comes through the lens directly onto the sensor. And that since our sends an electronic signal up to the viewfinder to show you what the camera's looking at. It's called an electronic viewfinder EVF. So you're looking at a, at a video image of what the camera sees, which is still good representation of your image is not quite as good as a optical viewfinder, but a lot of people accept it and it works quite well. The advantage of not having a mirror in the mirrorless camera is that it saves space. So you can have a smaller camera. The mirror is not there to cause vibrations as it flips up. And there are various other advantages that a mirrorless camera heads. So hair or a mirrorless camera works, is you're looking through the viewfinder at exactly what your sensor is looking at. So when you press the shutter to take your picture, your shutter pops up in front of the sensor and it opens up and closes, and then it pops down again to record that shutter speed or that exposure onto your sensor. It's a slightly more complicated process, but it works quite well. We can control various different parameters. When we take a photograph, we can control our exposure and focus various other things that we're going to talk about later on. But our exposure has got to do with the amount of light that's hitting our sensor. Now we've got two factors that control how much light hits that sensor. One is as shutter speed, which is the amount of time that the shutter is open for. And the other one is the aperture or the f-stop, which is a hole inside the lens that you can make larger or smaller. Now we're not going to go into these, particularly in this class. We've got other classes that will explain those more fully so that you'll understand it more. For the time being. We can just use an auto setting or a semi auto setting to be able to expose their image. I want you to get these basic setup features of your camera first and take a few shots. And then we'll get into the specifics of controlling your camera on manual settings. Also our focus. We can use what I focused or we can use manual focus for the time being. Just use the default auto focus that your camera has. And again, we'll learn a little bit more about that in the future. 7. How to Hold Your Camera: As we know, camera shake is one of the biggest problems that we have with digital cameras. Camera shake is a situation where we're moving slightly when we take our photograph and our image is blurred, it's shaky because of that. Now there are various different ways we can solve this camera shake issue. But the first one, and obviously the most important one, is holding your camera still. Now learning how to hold your camera properly is a basic function of being able to take nice sharp images. There are various different ways people hold their cameras, but the way that I do it is the way that I find is the best. It's the way that your camera manual will tell you when you look up your online manual for your camera. This is how they specify to hold your camera. So I know it's the best way. Now, the way that I hold my camera is that I support it with my left hand. I hold my left hand under the camera to support it. At that means that I can zoom and I can focus with this hand without moving it. I don't want a hand position where I'm constantly moving my hands around to zoom or focus and to do various different things. I want to keep my hands in the one position. So my left hand goes underneath the camera, supporting it nicely and it's so much more stable that way. If we do it this way, as I've seen, a lot of people do it. It's not supporting the camera particularly well. It's not an easy function to do because your elbows moving in an ad every time you move the focus or the, or the zoom ring. So stick your hand under the camera that way. Now, if it's not familiar to you, if you're used to doing it a different way, it will take a long time to change the habit. So the best way that I can find to teach people to do this is whenever you pick up your camera, always pick it up with your left hand because your hand will naturally go underneath your camera to support it, to stop it dropping it. If you're left handed, you're out of luck because I don't like left-handed cameras. You have to do it this way. So hold your hand underneath your camera. We all have various different hands sizes and different lens lengths and things like that. So just find a position underneath that camera that balance as well and you feel comfortable with your right hand. Is there simply to steady that camera and to push buttons and turned aisles. You'll find most of the important things are up around this top right-hand corner of your camera so that you can use your fourth finger or your thumb to change any settings that you need to change. And even once you get used to it, you can hold your on the viewfinder because your information, your camera's control information is in the bottom of that viewfinder. So you can hold your eye on that viewfinder and change these settings without even taking your eye off the viewfinder. The other thing that you need to do as tuck your elbows into your ribs. That gives you two points of contact, DNA notion, secure and press your eyebrow or your glasses against the back of that view fonder. That gives you three points of contact to help to hold that camera really still. I have seen people shoot with their eyes separated from the viewfinder, which is a problem because obviously you don't have that same control and that steadiness. Plus you often can't see the whole of the V Fonda there. Pressure eyebrow against the back of that V Fonda, your elbows tucked in and then just slowly squeeze your shutter to take your photograph. You'll find that you get less camera shake images and more sharp images. The other thing to think about is how you stand. If you stand with your feet together. As most of us do, It's very easy to rock backwards and forwards as you're taking a photograph because you're concentrating on what you're doing. Even with your feet apart, you're rocking backwards and forward slightly is difficult to maintain that position. Now this doesn't matter a great deal if you're shooting a landscape or something that's a long way away. But if you're shooting a close-up portrait or a close up of a flower or something. Then just moving forward that couple of centimeters or an inch or two is going to really affect the focus of your image and the framing of your image two. So learn to do it the way that rifle shooters do it. When somebody shooting a rifle, they stand with their feet apart and they shoot along the line of their toes. This is a much more stable platform to shoot from. And you know that you can still tuck your elbows in to your ribs and pressure are against the back of that viewfinder. And shoot, it's going to be much more stable and much more secure. Also, you can move backwards or forwards just by moving your knees, bending your knees and moving your body backwards or forwards to follow something that may be moving. You may have a B moving around on that flower. Or the wind will be blowing a little bit. So you can control that distance from your subject by just rocking your knees backwards or forwards. It's a much more stable and controllable platform to shoot with. So Practices until it becomes familiar to you. And even if you type terrible photos, you'll look like a good photographer. People will say look at that shadow there. He knows what he's doing. 8. Setting up Menus: Now we're going to talk about setting up your cameras menus for the best quality. Now my opinion is that the default settings are probably the best to use for most people. The reasons why I like the default settings in the menus is because the camera manufacturers setup these cameras for the best quality straight out of the box. Because a lot of cameras go to reviewers all around the world. And the manufacturers want those reviewers to get good results pretty quickly. So that's why that happens. The second reason why I like the default settings is because if I change something in my menu, it stays changed. It doesn't revert back when a turn my camera off. So if I have changed my white balance or change my image quality or change something like that. It stays changed until I revert it back to the other setting. So you need to be careful about what you change if you have changed something in the past and forgotten about it, every image you take is going to have that particular sitting on it. So be careful about what you do change in your menu. Having said that, there are a few things that we need to change and things we'd like to personalize in their menus. But for me they tend to be things that will stay there and the things that I won't change in the future. There'll just be there and all use those settings for every shoot that I'll do in the future. Now, there is one particular thing that I like to talk about that we need to change in our menus. We may need to change in their menus, and that's our image quality. Now, image quality is usually the first thing on the first menu or the second menu on your cameras. And you, and it's a measure of the size of file that your camera takes every time you take a picture. Now, our Canvas capable of taking two different types of files. We can take a JPEG, which we've all heard of. J pigs are really handy because we can upload them, we can email them, we can print from them. We can do a lot of things with a JPEG file. Your camera's capable of taking a few different sized JPEGs, generally small, medium, and large. Most of the world shoots large quality JPG because they're very good quality. They're handy because we can use them for lots of things. And that's why people tend to use them. And cameras tend to be set up in a way that they favor large quality JPEG. Now, there are a couple of ways that you can set your camera to a large quality JPEG. Different camera manufacturers denote these things in slightly different ways. Some camera manufacturers will call it fine quality. Some will call it a large quality. On Canon cameras, we have a full arc in the little icon with an L beside it. That means the largest quality, JP. So you need to consult your menus or ask somebody with a similar camera brand to show you how to set up for that large quality JPEG. The other type of file that their cameras can take as a raw file. Raw. Now a raw file is the largest, most detailed fall Lydia camera can take. If we have a 30 megapixel camera, every raw file we take has got 30 megapixels worth of information in a jpeg is what we call a compressed file. So when your camera is set to JPEG, now chemists still takes a raw file with 30 megapixels worth of information in it, and then it immediately reduces it down to a JPEG size, which may be 9, 10, 12, depending on your cameras type. Now, that sounds terrible, but it's not really, your JPEG is still really good quality image. In fact, if you looked at a JPEG and a rule files side-by-side, it would be hard to tell the difference between the quality of the two. In fact, your JPEG will look better. The reason why a JPEG looks better is because there are default adjustments that each camera makes when it converts that raw file down to a JPEG. And it generally, it varies between camera manufacturers, but generally it's a bit of saturation in the color, a little bit more contrast, and maybe a bit of sharpening. So it does vary between camera manufacturers and models. So your JPEG will actually look better than your raw file because of those default adjustments. Now you can't change those default adjustments. It's just the way they are. And it's there so that the JPEGS are going to be better quality straight out of the camera. Now, why would anybody take a raw file? The reason that people do shoot RAW files and that I shoot RAW files is because there's more information embedded in that image. That means when I get into post-production, when I get into my photo editing software, I can drag more information out of that file. I can pull detail back into my highlights and into my shadows. I can do a lot of things with that raw file that I can't do with my JPEG. I can still work on my JPEG in post-production and really do some great adjustments, but not to the extent that I can with my raw file because there's more information in that file, I can drag it out and ultimately I can get a better result for my final image, which always has to be a JPEG anyway. Even our shoot R4, the end product that are produced as a JPEG file. So I need to process that raw right through my editing software and then convert it to a JPEG in the end. The other thing that we may want to talk about in our menus is our white balance. Now what balance is a measure of the color of light that we use to take our photographs. All light sources that we use have slightly different colors. Daylight is said to be white light. So if we take a photograph in white light, all the colors look familiar to us. The reds look, read the blues look blue, the greens look green. If we take a photograph under some different sort of light source, for instance, these lights here in my studio are tungsten lights, so they are quite orange. Now, our brains correct this light when we're in this environment because we know what color things are supposed to be. So we don't notice it quite so much, but there are cameras aren't that intelligent. So when we take a photograph in this environment, it would often appear orange. Now we do have a white balance adjustment on our Canvas that allows us to correct this. Now, our white balance adjustment means that we can move our camera to specific icons depending on the light source that we're using. So if we're using tungsten light, we can move our white balance to the tungsten or the light bulb setting or incandescent, it's called sometimes. And our camera will add blue to the orange picture to bring it back to a normal color or close to it. It does a reasonably good job. If we're shooting fluorescent lights, then they are fluorescent sitting. There's a couple of different fluorescent settings in most cameras depending on the tubes that we're using. When we're shooting with flash fleshes, a slightly different color to daylight. It's very similar, but it's slightly bluer. So there are a number of different icons we have in that white balance menu that allows us to change that white balance to accommodate those different colored light sources. Now this is a great feature and it works really well. The problem with it is that if you forget to change it back afterwards, it can be a problem. I get so many people coming to me and saying, Why are all my pictures blue? And it's because when they were taking their shots in the tungsten white balance, they forgot to change it back again. They went to the beach the next day. And their Canvas tool assumes that there shooting with tungsten light. So their pictures are all blue. So it's a bit of a hassle to remember to change it back all the time. Consequently, my advice to most people, particularly those starting out, is to use auto white balance, which is probably what your cameras set to as a default. Auto white balance or AWB, allows your camera to sense the sort of light that you're using, the color of the light, and it will correct it to a reasonable degree. I use auto white balance quite often when I'm shooting. Other times I need to adjust my white balance, but I always remember to turn it back to my daylight setting when I finish. So that's pretty much all that I generally would advise newcomers to alter in their menus of their cameras. We're going to do more about other settings in future classes. But that gets you off to a good start. 9. Camera Care: Often the cameras that we use are quite expensive and they're quite precious. We want to protect them and have them there to use in the future. So we want to be able to look after them, make sure they don't deteriorate. There are few things that we can do to help our cameras to last as long as they possibly can. There are some things that chemists don't like. For instance, cameras don't particularly like dust. Get dust inside our camera onto a sensor. It can put little marks that will add a focus dots on our pictures depending on what we're shooting. So it's a good idea to try and minimize any dust that gets into your camera. So try not to take your lens off in dusty conditions or windy conditions. I always leave my lens on when I'll put my camera in my camera bag, I don't take it off as a lot of people do and separate my camera body from my lens. Make sure you've got a bag that's big enough to take your camera with your lens on it so that you don't have to separate it. This lens stays on this camera 95 percent of the time. So that's one thing you need to think about is dust in your camera. The second thing your camera doesn't lock is moisture or water. More expensive cameras tend to be a little bit more watertight, then less expensive cameras. But we can still be careful when we go out and shoot in the rain or in the fog or close to the seaside or anything like that that are Canvas, don't get moisture or water in them. I always take freezer bags with me. Those small bags that we use to put frozen food in the freezer, they're big enough to put over the top of my camera. I keep them in my camera bag. They take up a minimum amount of space and they're always there if I need them. So if I'm out on the beach shooting and a rainstorm comes, I can simply put that freezer bag over the top of my camera and protected. I can leave it on the tripod and it will be safe. I always carry garbage bags as well. So trashcan bags for your American friends, a large bag lot that is handy. Again, it doesn't take up much space in your camera bag. But if you do get stuck in a torrential downpour, you can put your whole camera bag inside that garbage bag tied up and it's going to be protected from any moisture. And you can make your way back to the car. You'll be you'll look like a drowned rat when you get there, but at least your camera will be fine. So be careful when you take your camera out where there's moisture around. Now if you do get salt spray on your camera, it can be an issue. Even though most of our cameras have surfaces that are fairly protected from corrosion, It's a good idea when you get home from the beach if there has been some salt spray around, to watch your camera with a damp rag, just very slight damp rag just to try and get any salt spray off your camera as much as you can. Now you need to be careful of your lens. If you have salt spray on the front of your lens, that's going to be an issue because when the water evaporates off that salt spray, you're left with salt crystals on your lens. And if you start to clean the front of your lens with that soap with their salt crystals on there, then it's going to scratch your lands quite badly. Now, the front of our lens, the first element and all the other elements are coated with a very fine layer of chemicals. It's, the chemical layer is there to help the quality of images, to help the contrast and the light transmissibility through those lens elements. If we clean the front of our lens, often after a while will rub that coding off and it degrades the quality of your picture. So I have lenses that are bought secondhand that people have just cleaned and cleaned and cleaned and that links coding has disappeared. It's very fine coating, so it doesn't take a lot for it to disappear. Now I often see my students when they come to class. The first thing I do is getting out there cleaning cloth and clean the lens. I very rarely clean my lenses. I just make sure that they don't get dirty. I clean my lens once every six months or so. I'll check it every time I go to take shots. But if it's not dirty, I don't do anything with it. So be careful about cleaning the front of your lens too much. One thing you can do to help this situation is to use a clear filter. A clear filter on the front of your lens doesn't cost very much. Looking at 2010, $20 or so, depending on the size of it. But if you clean your landscape, it cleaned for the first time. Then screw your cleave filter onto the front. It's going to protect the front of your lens and you're not gonna get any issues with that lens coding. You can always clean the front of your filter if it gets dirty, once it does get scratched or gets to be a little bit degraded, you can just throw it away and buy a new one. And you've saved the quality of your lens. Now when you're putting one of these cleave filters on the front of your lens. Be careful. Don't screw it up too tightly. If you screw it up all the way. With warming and cooling in your environment, in natural day-to-day life, that thread on that filter can seize up quite badly and it can be very difficult to remove. So what I do is I screw it up until it stops and then I'll just back it back a little bit just so that it is not going to bind up and it's not going to be difficult to take off when an aid to do that. Another thing you need to be careful of, depending on your environment and the weather conditions where you live is fungus. Fungus can grow inside lenses. Fungus loves those lens codings that I was just talking about. If you live in a humid environment or a humid climate, then this fungus can be an issue for you, particularly with lenses that you don't use very often. If we put our lens a whiner camera bag or put our lens cap on dark inside if there's any moisture in there as well, it's going to grow fungus. And fungus inside your lens can ruin your lens. It's just the throw. You could have a clean, but it costs a lot of money to do that you better off to try and prevent it if you can. So if you live in humid environments, which either we don't get a lot of humidity here in New Castle where I live. But if you are in a humid environment, it's often good to put your camera in a dry cabinet. If you can access one. A cabinet that drops the humidity down and keeps the air dry inside. If you don't have access to a dry covered, you could simply store your camera with your lens cap off in a lot, a lot open covered, say glass fronted cabinet or something like that so that you can keep the law in that lens. It's not likely to grow any fungus. But what most of us do is when we get home from an assignment, we put that lens cap on. We put a camera in the camera bag and put it under the bed or in a cupboard somewhere, which allows it to be moist from the environment we've just been in it last the darkness to be there. And that fungus loves the dock and moist environments. So keep your lens cap off stored in a glass fronted cabinet or something like that. And you're going to minimize the issue with fungus and your lens. 10. Your Project: Your project for this class is to simply follow the guidelines that we've been through in this class. Set up your camera the way that you want to set it up or the way that we've explained to you, it's up to you and produce a couple of images to show us that you've set up your camera properly and you've understood what we're talking about. So make sure that your images correctly exposed and focused. You can use the auto or the manual settings, whatever you like. But make sure that your camera is set up so that you're shooting either a JPEG or a raw file. Make sure your white balance is either auto white balance or you've adjusted it in the correct way. And think about your diopter adjustment. You're focus adjustment on your lens, your zoom on your lens. All of those things that we've talked about. And put a project in the project section, put a photo or put a couple of photos in there. If you have any questions, please ask them in the discussion section. I'm here to help and I'll want to help you. The more questions we get, the more everybody can learn. So do that for us please. And I'll see you in the conclusion to this class. 11. Wrap up: That's it. Setting up your camera is not a difficult thing to do. It looks very complicated, but a lot of the features and buttons and dials on your camera superfluous, they're not going to be used very often. The things that we talk about in these classes are the important thing, the things that are gonna make a difference to the quality and the creativity of your photography. Maybe rerun this class. If you miss something, it will help you to set up your camera. We're going to move on to a few extra things in the future classes. So please do these things. It's gonna make a big difference to the quality of your results. I'll see you in a future class.