What is the shutter speed?

Shutter speed is the length of time your camera takes a photo for. Cameras have different shutter mechanisms and adjusting the speed lets you take different kinds of photos based on the shooting conditions.

© mmxi photo taken with a fast shutter speed

Faster shutter speeds mean your shutter opens and closes at faster intervals, letting just a little light in to expose your frame. Slower shutter speeds on the other hand mean that your shutter is open for a longer period of time, effectively letting more light in to expose your film.

Both have their own specific uses. Faster shutter speeds can be used when there is plenty of light while slower shutter speeds can be used during low light conditions. Fast shutter speeds are also used in fast-paced shots like in sports and street photography. Slow shutter speeds on the other hand can be used for long exposure shots and nighttime photography.

Mastering both will give you an edge when it comes to adapting to different shooting conditions.

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