Be careful when you say “manual”.

You could mean several entirely unrelated things, including:

  • Manual exposure (that’s the “M” on the dial!)
  • Manual focus
  • Manual flash power
  • Manual focus point selection

Assuming you mean the first one, when do I use manual exposure mode?

  • When using flash indoors, always.
  • When I want full control (such as when shooting macro or art).
  • When I want consistency, such as when shooting a panorama or snow scenes.
  • When I am shooting impossible-to-meter subjects like fireworks.
  • When I am shooting important-to-get right subjects like product or food.
  • When the light varies constantly and I want my exposures to be stable.

Hope that helps.

0 thoughts on “Manual

  1. Hi Michael,

    Why would you need to set to Manual Exposure when using flash indoors? What’s the theory behind that?

    Also, what percentage of the time are you shooting in P mode, Av mode, Tv mode?

    What situations warrant you to change to P, Av, or Tv? In other words, how do you know when to switch?


  2. Pingback: A reader asks: Manual? Why? « Michael Willems Daily Photography Blog

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