Understanding Your First DSLR

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Hello everyone my name is Tanesha and I am the owner of Noëlle Couture Photography. If you found your way to my website more importantly this blog I’m going to assume it’s because you want to learn about photography, DSLR cameras and how to take those crazy beautiful images of your kids that you’ve been dying for. Well that’s where I come in I am here to help you be the best photographer/photo enthusiast you can be.

            The first here’s a little about myself. I’ve been photographing the world around me for over 10 years I’ve always had a passion for telling stories to photos most importantly telling your story the way you want it sold. I turn my passion into a business in 2017 after graduating college and realizing that this was something I wanted to have full time. I too was wanting your shoes searching the Internet, blogs, social media trying to find anyway to master my camera and figure out what direction I wanted to go in.

            After starting my business and getting such great feedback I decided to create a blog why you ask? Because when I was in college I came to the realization that my professors weren’t really teaching me much of anything and they were Countless times my classmates asked for my help in understanding the basics of photography in ways they could remember. So why not help others to progress and move forward with their goals.

*Please note I’m only here to educate you to the best of my abilities however I can’t teach you about the vision you have for yourself as an artist our photographer. The more you practice and the more you grow you will realize what type of artist/photographer or you want to become and the type of work do you want the world to see.

 With that being said let’s jump into understanding your first DSLR and its functions. If you’re just starting out in photography but you’re not sure where to start or what to do with your camera don’t worry I will teach you simple but easy steps on how to master your DSLR like a pro. Grab your camera and let’s get started…

First things first—

 obviously ALL cameras are different and unique in their own way but all of your DSLR’S will have the same functions/selections.

 for example: manual and auto focus

these two functions are located on the side of your lens for easy access. DSLR gives you the choice between auto focus and manual –

 so let’s talk about understanding auto focus—

 set your camera auto focus also known as AF and let your camera do it’s job THAT’S IT…. AF will save you a lot of time and still give you the sharp focus and great image quality you’re looking for where as manual focus allows you to control The focus yourself.

Does this make sense so far? If so, great let’s keep going.

Now I’m sure you’re asking yourself which auto focus should I use? And when should I use it??? Let’s break things down —digital cameras each have different auto focus modes depending on your subject

 for example my go to auto focus selection that I use 99.9% of the time is AF – S also known as (single – servo auto focus)

this setting is great for things such as


slow moving subjects,




AF-S allow you to lock Focus when you press down on the shutter button halfway

 AF – C also known as (continuous – servo auto focus) will allow your camera to adjust the focus continuously after the  shutter button is pressed halfway.

This function is best set for fast-moving subjects such as



kids and animals.

 I know this seems like too much information at the moment and you might have a slight headache but I promise it’s worth it so just sit tight and let’s keep going we are almost to the end of all the MADNESS.

Finally this brings me to AF-A also known as (auto servo – auto focus) which basically means that you we’re leaving the camera in complete control of itself and it will decide for each shot whether it should be AF-A or AF – S.

 Just a quick side-note if you are photographing both moving and stationary subjects I do not recommend this setting.

Now that we’ve learned how to master the difference in auto focus let’s talk about focal points and had to choose them. Depending on which DSLR you have you might have nine or more points

You will see these focal points when you look through your view finder or on the screen itself also known as focus pointe display first using the menu and your camera select auto focus area AF-area now select single point AF this selection is great for steady subjects.

If you decide to choose dynamic areas a F instead of a F areas single point you will have to select a focal point because if your subject moves even just a little bit the camera will readjust using surrounding points. For selections such as 3-D tracking mode Will allow you to change composition while the camera selects a new focal point keeping your subjects and focus this selection carries 11 point. Finally auto – area mode let your camera decide where to focus I personally don’t recommend a selection because only you would know what’s the most important subject and frame your camera will not I may end up selecting

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