Jumeira Beach Al Qasr, Dubai: F Stop f/20; Exposure Time 2/200sec; ISO-1600; Metering Mode: Pattern; Flash Used
It goes against the grain, doesn’t it? You know: a grainy shot. Noisy, in other words.
But what to do? The sun is all but set on the private beach of Jumeira’s Al Qasr; darkness’s blanket spreads out, however some light rays are still beaming down, and the scene is just so lovely with day trippers exhausting the final moments of pleasure shoreside…this needs to be captured. But how?
Fiddle with your ISO.
ISO controls the sensitivity of the camera’s sensor. It affects not only which exposure settings you can use, but also plays a major role in determining the final image quality. The more sensitive a sensor is to light, the less of light the camera will need to record an image. When there
isn’t enough light to shoot without using too slow a shutter speed, boosting the ISO sensitivity of the sensor will mean less light is required, so you’ll be able to use a faster shutter speed or smaller aperture and still get a well-exposed image.
However…as you raise the ISO the image quality degrades, due to the occurrence of image noise: specular grains. It is especially visible in the shadows and areas of uniform tone like in this image. The higher you set the ISO the coarser these grains appear.
Your cameras’ ISO range begins at ISO 100: perfect for shooting static subjects outdoors in reasonably bright light.
Each doubling of the ISO represents one extra stop of sensitivity. Going from ISO 100 to 200 will enable you to use a shutter speed one stop faster, or an aperture one stop smaller, while maintaining the same exposure.
When to use higher ISO:
1. Shooting hand-held at dusk or on overcast days when it isn’t bright enough to use a shutter speed higher than 1/60th second, with your standard lens. Slower speeds risks camera shake and blurred image.
2. When you need to use a small aperture (big number) to create as wide a depth of field as possible (say to capture this entire scene), and doing so would give you a shutter speed that’s too slow to hand-hold.