DSLR cameras offer a flexible shooting experience for a photographer. Photographers can not only attach a host of lenses & accessories to enhance their shooting experience but even customize the camera further from the menus to ensure a rapid shooting experience. Here are some tricks by which you can get most out of your Canon DSLR. These tricks/techniques apply to most of the Canon DSLR cameras but certain might not be available/applicable to some Canon DSLR cameras. Some of the tricks discussed here might even apply to camera of other brands.
1) How to know which AF Focus Point is Active?
A) It is crucial to know which AF focus point is active when you’re using AF on your Canon DSLR. Inside the viewfinder, all focus points are turned off by default to ensure you an obstruction free shooting. To know, which AF point is active & on which part the camera will attain focus, simply press ‘+’ button on back of your camera. It’s the one which you use to zoom into photo in playback mode. Now the active AF point will get highlighted in the viewfinder in red.
2) How can one make Manual Focusing Easier?
A) Under certain situations, you’ll have to resort to Manual Focusing. Here if your lens does not have a distance scale or you’ve weak eyesight, chances are you will often have shots missing focus. Not to mention, manual focusing on wide apertures is a not a piece of cake for any photographer. Here you can take the help of your cameras AF mind. The camera can indeed perform AF operations even when you set your lens on manual focusing but just that it will not be able to engage the AF motors in the lens to focus the lens since its set on manual focus. In order to acquire precise focus when focusing manually, do the following. Press ‘+’ button so that the target AF point is selected. Change it or keep it on the area of your image you want your focus to be. Now press the shutter button halfway & slowly turn the focusing ring on your lens. Once you acquire focus on the AF point, the camera will show focus confirmation dot in viewfinder & even beep if you’ve not disabled the beeper. Now simply, press the shutter all the way & you’ve a properly focused image.
3) How to give a specific colour tint to the photograph in-camera?/How to correct a colour cast of photograph in-camera?
A) With RAW shooting available hardly anyone bothers about getting correct colours within the camera. Still as with most things, I insist on getting them correct(close to) just within the camera. This not only saves me time in post-processing but also further does not degrade the quality of the image especially if you shoot JPEG’s. There is an option known as “WB Shift/BKT” under the shooting menu of your Canon DSLR. It stands for White Balance Shift/Bracketing. Once you’ve set your white balance to your preferred option, enter the WB Shift/BKT option from the menu. You’ll see a complex visual. Relax, just observe the color lines across the four sides of the graph. Now if you’ve learnt about colour theory of photography, then you’ll know combining which two colours will give you what colours. Adding which colour will balance out another colour tint. If you’re unfamiliar with this, simply set the WB Shift to any random point on the graph & shoot one picture. Now you’ll get a fair idea. Read up more online & practice. Soon you’ll know how to use this nifty feature of your camera to get near accurate colours right within your camera itself. As your knowledge grows, learn about bracketing the white balance too.
4) How to check Depth of Field(DOF) before shooting?
A) Getting the correct amount of depth of field is crucial in the making of a successful photograph. Generally DSLR offer much more control over DOF than its Point & Shoot counterparts. When one peers through the viewfinder to compose a scene, the camera opens up the aperture to the maximum available for your lens so that you can get a brighter view of the image. Even if you stop down your lens, the lens remains wide open but stops down to your set aperture only when you depress the shutter. This happens really quick. Often than not, one needs to find if the DOF is adequate or one needs to further stop down to get more DOF. Here one can press the “DOF Preview” button to check the DOF. The DOF Preview is a small button generally find at the bottom of your lens mount. It can be either to the left or right of the mount depending on your camera. It is generally not titled or marked. While looking through the viewfinder, pressing the DOF Preview button stops down the lens to your set aperture & you can check the DOF. This even works when the camera is in live-view mode. This makes it easy to check DOF in the frame even before shooting.
Hope you find these tricks/techniques useful while shooting with your Canon DSLR.