DSLR Camera Basics Tips & tricks

Shutter speed

The shutter speed on your camera is like a curtain, that opens and closes when you’re taking a picture. You can compare it with the big, red curtains in a theater. When the curtains open, there is light falling on stage. The time wherein they open and close is called shutter speed. When the curtains are opening and closing fast, there’s falling light on stage for a small amount of time and we speak of a short shutter speed. If they stay open for a longer time, we’re calling it a large shutter speed.

The shutter speed is displayed in (parts of) seconds. If the shutter speed is smaller than one second, it’s displayed as a break. A picture made with a shutter speed of 1000, means the shutter is open for 1/1000 second. It might sound strange but when you have a longer shutter speed, the number is smaller.

It’s important not to take pictures without a tripod when you are shooting with a shutter speed lower than 1/60 seconds. If you would like to take a picture with a long shutter speed you will need a tripod, otherwise the shot is going to be blurry.

If you can change the shutter speed yourself you’re generating more creative opportunities. For example you’re able to freeze a moment by using a high shutter speed. On the other side you can choose to show movement in a picture. You can do this by selecting a small shutter speed in the settings. That way the picture is going to turn out more exciting and you’re able to put the focus on a specific part of the frame.