So, I got this picture last weekend at the beach which is equal parts amazing and distressing. Here it is:
It is gorgeous, right? My husband smiling, my boy smiling. What's distressing though is that because of my own inexperience with my camera, this photo which could have been SPECTACULAR isn't. The background is completely blown out and, while that's a cool effect, I admit, it isn't what I was going for. The skin tones are also completely unrealistic because I had to alter the exposure significantly in Lightroom (yep, it was MORE blown out than that originally).
What happened: I was taking shots of the boys on the beach in manual when Rhys looked up, saw me and started running towards me with a huge, beautiful smile on his face. I lifted the camera and started shooting . . . without stopping to change my exposure settings, which were COMPLETELY off now that I was shooting basically into the sun.
Here's the thing . . .even if I were more experienced, even if I were much better at this whole photo taking thing, I still don't know that I'd have chosen to take the time to fix my settings when it may have meant missing a moment like that. I may have (hypothetically) panicked and choked. Granted, with experience I'd probably get faster at changing those settings . . . maybe I'd have taken 2 shots, then fixed then gotten 2 more (I took 6 total, as it was). Even so, I may have missed "the" shot.
While Rhys is adorable full time, photo ops like this one don't happen on cue. I've got to be ready to roll when he's looking into the camera.
If I'd had the camera in program mode, I may have gotten the shot, but then I would have missed a lot of great other shots during the day that were taken in tricky lighting situations that program mode wouldn't have handled to my satisfaction. (It was bright and sunny with lots of shadows). I'm not even certain that program mode could've handled the lighting for the shot in question.
Aperture priority or shutter priority modes? I'll admit, I haven't spent that much time in either of those. I feel like I want to be learning how to use my camera. REALLY learning how to use it . . . and I can't learn fully if I'm copping out by letting the camera auto some of my settings for me. That's an ego thing, partially, I'll admit . . . but the "wanting to learn" argument is still fully valid.
I don't see an easy answer.
What mode do you tend to keep your camera in? What's your battle plan for catching "the shot"?