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Camera Basics. How cameras work Film vs Digital Taking control. Film Camera. Viewfinder Cameras Image viewed through a simple lens providing an image of how the final picture will look. Light travels from the subject through the lens to the film Parallax error. Film Camera.

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camera basics

Camera Basics

How cameras work

Film vs Digital

Taking control

film camera
Film Camera
  • Viewfinder Cameras
    • Image viewed through a simple lens providing an image of how the final picture will look.
    • Light travels from the subject through the lens to the film
    • Parallax error
film camera1
Film Camera
  • Single Lens Reflex (SLR)
    • Photographer looks directly through the lens to see the picture.
    • Light from the lens reflects off an internal mirror up to the viewing system.
    • Mirror swings out of the way to allow light to expose the film.
    • Includes a prism to invert the reversed image
digital camera
Digital Camera
  • Lenses work just like film cameras
  • BUT, lenses refract light onto computer chips rather than film
  • Contains a logic board with microprocessors and transistors.
  • Microcontroller unit (MCU) – main chip
  • Image sensor – converts light refracted by lens element into a series of electrical charges
parts of the camera
Parts of the camera
  • Diaphragm
    • Opens and closes to control the amount of light entering the camera
    • Diameter of the diaphragm is the aperture
  • Shutter
    • Controls how long the film is exposed to light
    • Digital – shields the image sensor from constant exposure
making images
Making Images
  • Film responds chemically
    • Active ingredient – gelatinous emulsion filled with light-sensitive crystals
    • Crystals contain traces of silver
    • When light hits the film impurities in the crystals attract the silver atoms into clumps
    • Stronger light = larger clumps
    • Development process enlarges the clumps making them visible
image sensor
Image Sensor
  • Image sensor responds electronically
    • Sensor is composed of a layer of silicon covered with a grid of square electrodes
    • Silicon has negatively charged particles – electrons
    • When light passes through the electrodes - the electrons scatter
    • Voltage applied to the electrodes attracts the free electrons into clusters - photosites
image information
Image Information
  • Images are stored as a collection of tiny squares
    • Pixels = picture elements
  • Resolution: number of pixels captured by the image sensor.
  • Masking: pixels clipped away around the perimeter of the image
  • Interpolation: invention of extra pixels
image size and compression
Image size and Compression
  • JPEG
    • Joint Photographic Experts Group
    • Compresses image data
    • Smaller picture files
    • Utilizes a lossy compression scheme
      • Some image data is sacrificed during the compression process
    • Common WWW format
image size and compression1
Image size and Compression
  • TIFF
    • Tagged Image File Format
    • Uncompressed image information
      • Can utilize LZW compression
        • Lossless compression scheme
        • Only redundant image data is dumped
    • Larger file sizes
    • Used when quality is important
    • Print and publishing format
  • Uncompressed
    • Sheep, sheep, sheep, sheep, sheep
  • Lossless compression
    • Seven sheep
  • JPEG
    • sheep
  • ISO – International Standards Organization ratings
    • The image sensors’ sensitivity
    • Comparable to film rating
    • Lower ISO – more light necessary for picture
      • Ordinary film 200 - 400
  • Aperture
    • Opening of the diaphragm to let in light
    • F-stops
  • Each stop represents a factor of 2 in the amount of light permitted.
  • Affects the depth of field
    • How much in front of or behind the object will be in focus.
    • The smaller the aperture, the greater the depth of field, the more of the photograph is in focus.







shutter speed
Shutter Speed
  • Shutter speed controls the length of the exposure
    • Closed shutter means no light
  • Numbers indicate fractions of a second
    • Each is either half or double the length of time of the one next to it.
  • Parallel to the aperture