As a blogger, I get a lot of questions about photography.  Photography has become one of my biggest passions in life.  I go into another zone when I take photos.  I took photography classes 7 years ago at Photo Manhattan in New York City.  Learning the basics of photography was the best investment I ever made.  I see so many people buy expensive cameras and use them in automatic mode.  That’s like using 5% of what your camera can actually do!  If there are 2 basic things you should know about photography in manual mode, it’s your F-stop and ISO.

The F-stop or aperture is how much light enters the lens.  For lower F-stops, more light enters and therefore, more exposure.  With lower F-stops, there is a shallow depth of field so the foreground is in focus and the background is blurry.  This effect is great for fashion and food photography because you usually just want to focus on the subject in the front.  Lower F-stops are also great for night time shots because again, you’re letting in more light in the lens.  I have a special lens that allows the F-stop to go all the way down to F 1.4 but more on that in a bit.  The higher the F-stop, the greater the depth of field.  You will want this when shooting landscapes because you want all the detail.

ISO or shutter speed measures the sensitivity of the image sensor.  The lower the ISO, the less sensitive it is to light and the finer the grain.  Low ISOs are used during the daytime.  The higher the ISO is, the more sensitive it is to light and used during darker situations like at night.  You can actually hear how fast the shutter speed is; like if your ISO isn’t high enough, it will take longer to snap the photo.

Below are the cameras I use for shooting photos for my blog.  When I travel, I love to pack the Panasonic Lumix and the GoPro Hero Session because of their small sizes.  Both of them have wifi capabilities and corresponding apps on my iphone so that I can have the immediate gratification of downloading the photos onto my camera roll.  I have 2 lenses for my Canon 60D which is my main camera that I shoot with: 1) Sigma 30mm 1.4 lens that’s great for food and portrait photography and 2) Canon 18-135mm for your all-purpose lens; perfect for any situation.

  1. Canon EOS 60D
  2. Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 lens
  3. Sigma 30mm f/1.4 lens for Canon
  4. Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100
  5. GoPro Hero 5 Session