What is Aperture in Photography?

Morning shutterbugs! 🙂

It’s Jernej here, your friendly neighborhood photographer. Today, I want to talk about aperture in photography!

Dive deep into the world of aperture (opening, hole): Your complete guide to understanding this key photography element

What is aperture in photography?

The aperture is essentially the size of the opening in a camera lens that lets light in to hit the image sensor. It’s often referred to as the “pupil” of the lens because, just like the human eye, it adjusts in size to let more or less light in. Aperture is a crucial component of exposure, and it affects not only the amount of light that reaches the image sensor but also the depth of field, which is the part of an image that appears in focus.

So, to put it simply, aperture is the size of the hole that lets light into your camera and influences the brightness and focus of your images. Understanding how to control aperture is a critical skill for any photographer, and it can have a huge impact on the final result.

Measuring aperture

Aperture is measured in f-stops, with a smaller f-stop number meaning a larger opening and vice versa. The lower the f-stop, the more light gets in and the shallower the depth of field.

What are the F-stop numbers in aperture?

Aperture is expressed in f-stops, which are numbers that indicate the size of the hole as a fraction of the lens’s focal length. For example, an f/2.8 aperture means that the diameter of the hole is equal to 1/2.8 of the lens’s focal length. The lower the f-stop number, the wider the opening and the more light that can enter the camera. Conversely, a higher f-stop number means a smaller opening and less light.

Here’s a list of common f-stop numbers you’ll see in photography:

  • f/1.4
  • f/1.8
  • f/2
  • f/2.8
  • f/4
  • f/5.6
  • f/8
  • f/11
  • f/16
  • f/22

It’s important to note that these numbers are not absolute, and the actual size of the opening will vary depending on the lens you’re using. However, the relationship between the f-stop numbers remains the same, so you can use them as a guide to adjust the aperture and control the amount of light that enters the camera.

My favorite lenses

For example, my favorite lens, the Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8 Di III VXD G2, has a maximum aperture of f/2.8, which is great for low-light situations. My Sony FE 50mm F1.8 lens has a maximum aperture of f/1.8, making it even better for low-light photography.

The magic of aperture

But it’s not just about the amount of light; it also affects the focus of an image. With a wide, open aperture (low f-stop), the background will be blurred, making the subject stand out more. This is known as “bokeh,” and it’s a great way to add some drama to your shots.

My shooting style

Personally, I love shooting with manual settings on my Sony A7 III and playing around with different opening values. And of course, I always shoot in RAW format so I can get the most out of my images.

Your Turn

So, how about you guys? Have you been out taking any new pictures lately? Do you have any suggestions for my next post? Let me know in the comments!

See you around!

P.S. Don’t forget to check out my Twitter profile, @JernejLetica, and leave a comment on this post. I’d love to hear from you! 🙂

Leave a Comment