12 Digital Photography Terms You Need To Know

Aside from finding the perfect camera, lighting, and inspiration, one of the biggest challenges is learning and understanding photography vocab. No matter how advanced your photography skills may be, knowing the key terms can reshape your understanding of the art. Once you put this knowledge into practice, you’ll never look back.


Here’s a list of photography terms, which will have you feeling like a pro in no time.

Ambient Light
Simply put, the ‘light in the scene’ or better referred to as ‘natural light’. This is different from the light provided by the photographer via flashes and photofloods.

The adjustment of the lense, allowing as much or as little light in. The wider the aperture setting is, the shallower the depth of field in the image captured.

Artificial Light
A fairly self explanatory term. Artificial light is anything that is not considered natural light. Meaning, flashes, ceiling lights, street lamps are all considered artificial light.

Refers to the camera finding the focus of the shot for you. It’s very easy to do and a great technique for beginners. Simply press the ‘take button’ half down and allow the camera lense to focus automatically, then follow through to take the photo.

The exposure is the amount of light that hits a camera’s centre. Ever wondered why your photos appear overly ‘white’, it could be due to high exposure.

Landscape Mode
As the name suggests, landscape mode is when the image is oriented horizontally.

Portrait Mode
Opposite to landscape mode, these are images taken with a camera when in a vertical facing position.

The noise would be the pixels in your digital image that were “misinterpreted.” With noise reduction features, cameras eliminate random pixels and other image noise.

This happens when an image, or part of it, is totally white. This can occur when there is too much light exposed to the camera. It can happen for a variety of reasons, the shutter speed or f/stop may be too low or your ISO is too high.

Refers to the quality and clarity of the image. If you want to go down the path of one day printing your photos, best to have them as high resolution as possible so they’re nice and clear.

Shutter Speed
This is a simple one. Shutter speed is quite literally the speed in which the shutter opens and closes. The shutter speed affects how much light can get into the camera for that photo.

White Balance
Light is not all white. When referring to white balance, it’s the ability to adjust colour so the image appears more ‘natural’.

Are you feeling more confident about your photography vocab? Try putting these terms into practice next time your behind the lense & show us your incredible photos by tagging us on Instagram #snapfishaunz or posting to our Facebook page!

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