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Thursday, February 21, 2019

How to Take Better Photos With Live View on Your Camera

One camera feature a lot of photographers underuse is the Live View screen on the back. While it’s slower to line up a shot with Live View rather than just looking through the viewfinder, there are a few advantages. Let’s look at how you can use the Live View screen to take better photos.

See the Whole Image

Have you ever taken a photo looking through the viewfinder where you carefully cropped out some distraction on the very edge of the frame then, when you looked at the photo later, whatever that distraction was is still on the edge of the image? The reason for that is your camera’s viewfinder only shows most of the image. Generally, it’s about 95% (or 98% on better cameras). Here’s what that looks like.

While it’s not normally a huge deal, it does mean that you’ll sometimes need to crop away otherwise good pixels to get rid of a distraction you didn’t see in the viewfinder. With the live view screen, you see the whole image all the time.

See How Things Will Really Look

Not only do you see the whole image, but you also better see things how they’ll look in the final image. The viewfinder shows you the light that’s entering your camera and bouncing straight off the mirror to your eye. So that enough light gets through, the aperture is kept wide open. You won’t see if your image is correctly exposed or how the depth of field looks—at least until you press the DOF Preview button.

RELATED: How to Nail Exposure on Location When You Take Photographs

With the live view screen, your camera displays how the photo will actually look—or at least, a very good approximation of it. With longer shutter speeds, the live view screen won’t show any of the motion blur.

Zoom in to Get Focus

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