Thursday, August 2, 2012

Kill The Exposure Triangle

I love this stupid graphic. Every stupid web site that wants to teach you how to use your digital camera (oh, and by the way, monetize your eyeballs by showing you a ton of ads) has this pig on it someplace.

Take a minute to think about what it actually manages to capture and convey. It definitely covers the idea that Shutter Speed, Aperture, and ISO are all interconnected. Possibly it even conveys the idea that changing one means you have to change one (or is it both?) of the others.

Work through it a little. We see Shutter Speed at one corner. Say that you cut your shutter speed in half. What does that mean? Does it mean that angle at the corner should be cut in half? And what on earth does that even mean for the other parameters? Does the ISO have something to do with the angle at the corner (which is always 60 degrees in the pictures anyways) or is it the length of something? Maybe it's the length of the opposite side! Awesome! So I've doubled the ISO, that must mean I double the length of the opposite side (why don't they label the sides instead of the corners?) so that means I guess I should do something with the other sides of the triangles. Should I double them too, to keep the triangle equilateral?

Ok, great! This is working! I double the ISO, the shutter speed, and the aperture all at once! What? No.

It's just chartjunk, and proof that all these stupid web sites that want to "teach" you are just stealing ideas from one another, regardless of whether they make any sense whatsoever.

Kill the Exposure Triangle.

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