GoPro Cameras For Dummies
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There are two schools of thought regarding photographing waves. The first is to use a high shutter speed to freeze the motion of a cresting wave and any spray. Other photographers like to use a slow shutter speed. The following paragraphs address each scenario.

To freeze the motion of a wave, you need to use a shutter speed of at least 1/250 of a second. If you zoom in on a wave, you have to use an even faster shutter speed, perhaps as fast as 1/1000 of a second.

You should also use a small aperture of f/11 to ensure a large depth of field. Shooting in low light conditions forces you to increase the ISO setting, which may cause a noise problem.

To artistically portray the power of waves in motion, use a slow shutter speed longer than one second. This renders the water in silky patterns. When you use a shutter speed that’s several seconds long, you get an even more artistic result.

To achieve a long shutter speed, choose your lowest ISO setting, and then choose the smallest aperture on your lens. If you’re photographing in bright light, you may have to use a neutral density filter to reduce the amount of light reaching the sensor, which decreases the shutter speed.

You will have to use a tripod or some other method of supporting the camera when you photograph waves with a slow shutter speed.


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John Carucci is an entertainment news producer for Associated Press Television. He is the author numerous books on creative and nighttime photography. Carucci has also contributed articles to American Photo, Popular Photography, and PC Photo magazines.

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