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Photographer’s Dictionary

*Aperture: The opening in a lens that allows more, or less light onto the sensor.

Aperture Priority: The user decides on the aperture settings, and the camera automatically adjusts the shutter speed.

Automatic Mode: The camera automatically sets the shutter speed and the aperture based on the surrounding light conditions.

*AF – Auto Focus: A feature on many DSLR lenses that automatically adjusts the lens to produce crisp images.

*Buffering: Buffering often occurs when too the processing speed of your camera does cannot keep up with the number of images you have taken within a short period of time.

Bulb: A shutter speed where you completely control the amount of time between when the shutter curtains open and close. The shutter opens when you press the shutter release and closes when you let go of the button.

*CF Card (Compact flash): A common type of memory card that is often used in full frame cameras.

*Depth of Field (DOF): This refers to the number of items in focus. Based on lens focal length and aperture, a shallow depth of field(less focused items) is caused by a large aperture. A smaller aperture (ex. f/16) allows for more items in focus with less blur.

DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex (SLR): A digital camera with a mirror system and the capability of changing lenses.

*Exposure: Based on aperture and shutter speed, exposure refers to the amount of light that is let onto the image sensor.

*F-Stop: Numerical value given to the aperture of a camera. F/1.4 is extremely wide, where F/22 is extremely narrow.

*Fixed Aperture: The aperture of a lens is the same throughout.

*Fixed Focal Length: A lens that cannot be zoomed in or zoomed out(ex. 35mm, 50mm, 85mm, etc.).

*Focal Length: Measured in millimeters, focal length refers to the distance between the optical center of a lens, and the camera sensor when the lens is focused at infinity.

Frame Rate: Measured over the coarse of one second, frame rate refers to the number of still images that make up a video.

*Hot Shoe: A connector that is typically located on the top of a camera that allows you to attach a flash, a microphone, etc.

Hue: Hue refers to the exact shade and depth of any given color.

Image Resolution: Refers to the number of pixels per unit of measurement (ex. inch, etc.).

*Image Sensor: The electronic platform that obtains information about what you see according to the surrounding light.

Image Stabilization (IS): A feature on many DSLR lenses, image stabilization reduces camera shake, and helps you capture crisp images.

*ISO: ISO refers to how sensitive the camera’s imaging sensor is to light. By amplifying the pixels on an imaging sensor, a high ISO (ex. 3200) is very sensitive to light. At a low ISO (ex. 100), the pixels are barely amplified.

*JPEG or JPG(Joint Photographic Experts Group): The most common file format for an image, JPG or JPEG is a compressed file that takes up less space then a RAW file, and looses some image quality.

*Megapixel: One megapixels contains one million pixels.

Moiré: A common result when two patters are overlaid at an angle.

NEF (Nikon Electronic Format): Nikon’s RAW format.

*Noise: Usually due to high ISO speeds, image noise refers to grainy-looking photographs due to misinterpreted pixels.

Noise Reduction: A feature on some cameras that help prevent pixels from being misinterpreted when shooting at high ISO speeds.

*Overexposed: An overexposed image is usually white due to shutter speeds that were to long, or a very wide aperture.

Panorama: A photograph that is developed by “stitching” multiple photographs together.

Point and Shoot: A basic type of camera that captures an image by simply pointing and shooting. You cannot change the lens on these cameras, and there is no mirror system.

*RAW: Tether unprocessed image data at 12 bits per channel.

Red-Eye: When too much concentrated light is sent directly at someone’s retina, the harsh contrast returns to the imaging sensor as a red dot.

Resize: Resizing an image does not refer to cropping a photograph. A resized image typically has the same aspect ratio, it’s just larger or smaller then the original.

Resolution: The number of pixels that are displayed inside of an image.

RGB. (Red, Green and Blue): The three primary colors that make up a pixel. These three colors can produce any color in the color spectrum
Saturation:. The degree to which a color is undiluted by white light. If a color is 100 percent saturated, it contains no white light. If a color has no saturation, it is a shade of grey.

*SD. (Secure Digital): A type of memory card that is common in most point and shoot and entry level DSLR type cameras.

Shutter: The two plastic curtains that are located in front of an imaging sensor.

Shutter Priority: The user chooses the shutter speed and the camera automatically determines the aperture.
Telephoto: An extremely far focal distance that brings distant objects closer to you.

Time-Lapse: A video that is composed of thousands of photos.

Under exposed: The opposite of over exposed, an under exposed image is caused because too little light was let onto the imaging sensor.

Video Out: A feature on many DSLR cameras and some point and shoots, video out allows the user to connect their camera to a TV or other display to present images on a larger scale.

*Viewfinder: On a DSLR, the viewfinder is what you look through to determine the image that you are going to capture.

Vignetting: Describes the darkening of the outer edges of an image.

*White Balance: Measured in Kelvin, an image can either be cool(blue) or warm(orange/red).

Zoom Lens: A lens that allows you to adjust the focal length.



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