Best Tips & Tricks Setting Up Your Camera For Street Photography

Aperture Priority

When there is medium to strong light, I always use Aperture Priority. The reason for this is because I want to be able to set my camera and forget about the settings. With the settings out of the way, you are free to enjoy yourself and to focus on the content.

If the light is fairly even, you won’t have to worry much. But on sunny days, particularly in New York, there is a huge contrast between the sunny part of the street and the shady part. So it’s a pain to change your settings every time you go from one to the other.

So what I will do is set my camera to the ideal settings for the shady side of the street. This means that I usually set my camera to around f/8 or f/11 (sometimes f/5.6) and ISO 800 (you can tweak these depending on how dark the shady side really is). This will allow for at least a 1/250th of a second shutter speed in the shade.

The tradeoff is that when you point your camera toward the sun, ISO 800 is a little higher than you would normally use in that situation. But the added grain is fine, and it allows you to seamlessly go back and forth between lighting situations. Your shutter speed will be something crazy fast like 1/2500th or so. But that will mean that at least your subjects will be super sharp.

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