Mastering Aperture: DSLR Video Tips


How much light does your camera see? The aperture of your camera is its portal to the light in your scene (and without light, there are no pictures or video). Controlling the aperture is essential to getting the right amount of light on to your camera’s sensor to capture the best shots.

There’s another side to aperture as well. As you open the aperture wider, you can narrow the depth of field in your shot, blurring more of the frame outside of your immediate focus area. This is often a hallmark of the “DSLR video” look. Mastering aperture is critical to high-quality video and photos.

This week we cover

  • What is aperture? Learn why the aperture is critical to good exposure, and how to access it on your lens.
  • A DP’s perspective on aperture Catch up with director of photography Jim Ball and learn how he uses aperture when shooting in different situations.
  • Adjusting the aperture Learn how to make adjustments to the settings on your camera to get the best results.
  • Real-world examples We’ll evaluate several shots, breaking down what worked and what didn’t.

Check out both the sample video above and this week’s complete episode on We’ll help you get the best exposure, and control the depth of field of your shots!