More Than an Image Photography »

1. Starting out, would you recommend just staying in Av mode and focusing on Depth of field and let the camera pick the shutter?

For those of you who don’t know… AV mode means Aperture priority… which is Similar to AUTO… but AUTO will allow your camera’s shutter speed and aperture to constantly fluctuate. AV mode means you set your aperture on what you’d like for it to stay on (lets say… 2.8)…and your camera automatically chooses what shutter is a good combination to work with your aperture at 2.8.

If you are still learning your camera this is a good place to start… Some photographers prefer AV mode

If you prefer a little more control you can shoot in Manual… This allows you to be in control of every aspect: Shutter, Aperture, ISO, Exposure etc… (I like to shoot a little brighter so I may bump my exposure up +1 rather than have it at 0).

2. If I’m shooting outside in the early evening before sunset, should I keep my ISO at like 100? If I can’t get enough ‘light’ and I bump it up, that creates too much noise right? What’s a good ISO to keep my cam on at any time? I know indoor is a different story right? I have issues with shadows indoors.

You can use an ISO of 100 if you are in direct sunlight… If you need to bump it to 400 or so… you won’t see very much noise… Sometimes, if I’m shooting in doors at a reception I bump it to 1600 or higher… a little noise is not necessary a bad thing… and remember each camera handles noise a little differently…  I think 400 is a good place to start and adjust from there!

If you are shooting with natural lighting indoors… you will most likely have to slow your shutter, raise your ISO, or both… Unless you are shooting in a place that has a ton of ambient light coming in! Then your settings could be similar to outdoor settings!

3. Are there any manual settings you recommend starting with? I like a shallow DOF mostly but I figure with a moving subject that may be hard unless your shutter makes up for it??

Yes! You’re absolutely right!  I generally prefer shooting at a 2.8 aperture or less… but if your subject is moving (even a couple of inches forward and backward) it could be difficult… Kids are especially unpredictable… You almost have to anticipate their move… Focus… and shoot quickly!:)It’s harder than it looks!:)haha! There is a difference between “motion” blur (which can be fixed by increasing your shutter speed) or “out of focus” blur when your subject is moving toward or away from you… in this case, increasing your shutter won’t help any.

4.For receptions, what are you doing to get the full color, everything sharp with no noise? I shoot them two ways: one, lower shutter speed, (maybe around a 60th with 250 iso and a flash that I will bounce) or I will shoot it with a very high iso..which always leads to more noise (obviously). So I’m just wondering what your take is on that.;)

If your ISO is raised to get a little more light… as long as there IS sufficient light…either ambient or flash… you won’t see as much noise… You’ll only see Noise in the darks… It sounds like the main difference may be in post processing… I generally like to edit with more contrast… so it just “polishes” the photo… It may not be anything you’re doing wrong in shooting…it may just be an editing difference.:)

Also… I thought this may be helpful! Thanks to



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  • liz perdomo - so the questions were about DOF and ISO?? why did someone not ask “why is Lacy so awesome!?” ;) ha ha. really though! These cheat sheets are really neat and useful for beginners! good stuff.

I am photographing this beautiful brides wedding today so I can finally post these!:)Erika! I can’t wait to see the look on your soon to be husband’s face when he see’s you for the first time today!!

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  • liz perdomo - BEAUTIFUL girl! love the shoes and of course her furry friend. Great to see the pearls too! Looking forward to seeing images of Erika next to her groom right about now ;)

Sheliah and Chris!!!  There is not a doubt in my mind that you two married your best friend… and your families are so precious… it is not hard to understand how great the two of you are together… when you know the kind of families you came from!  Sheliah… You have got to be… one of the most sincere, loving, fun and thoughtful brides I have ever known!  Anyone who knows you…knows exactly what I’m talking about!  Anyone would be honored to have as a friend… and I am glad to call you just that! :)  Your wedding day was beautiful… and I am so thankful I was able to capture such sweet moments for you guys to cherish for a lifetime! *hugs*

(A big thank you to Austin based documentary photographer, Daniel Davis for second shooting for me for this wedding! Check out his blog! He’s pretty fantastic!)

Ceremony: St. Ignatius – Austin, Texas

Reception: The Mansion on Judges Hill – Austin, Texas

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  • jenna merlino reich - I love you lacy…you did amazing as always…I love all the pics of my boys!!!!

  • Lizzy - WOW!!!! That’s what I can say about these pictures…seriously, I got emotional going through this blog. What a sweet and loving couple. You can definitely see the love not only between the both of them, but between their families as well. Need loads of tissues now!!! Fav of this blog has to be the tie on the bum…classic!

  • liz perdomo - I smiled throughout the entire post. Lacy…it was perfect! I am a sucker for candids and you nailed it with the images of Chris with his parents…esp. those of him and his sweet mom. Both Sheliah and Chris seem to have amazing, loving parents! love that! Sheliah, I love the elegance & simplicity of your wedd. details. From your headband to the cake! Now your shoes….need I go there…they were awesome!!! Congrats you two!!

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