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Forget about the automate .Is the Full Manual Exposure Mode a myth or reality?

1. Why shoot the full manual mode to master your exposure? Is it a myth or reality?

Many participants to the workshops had the misconception that manual mode is "superior" which I completely disagree. Manual mode is just one of the methods of shooting. How can it be superior to others? The reality is that photographers are faced with various lighting conditions which they have to react quickly. Manual exposure mode is too slow, you will likely miss the chance of getting it right unless your lighting condition is constant (unchanged) like in the controlled studio.

2. Is Manual mode the choice of professional photographers?

No, Manual mode is just one of the methods of shooting other than S (Tv), A (Av) ,P mode. Each shooting mode is designed to cater for different creative needs. By blindly going to manual shooting mode will not achieve the desired results. You would probably miss the chance to capture the moments.

3. The disadvantages of the camera fully manual mode in creative photography.

  • Manual mode is great when light stays the same from the beginning to the end.

  • I use manual exposure mode only when my camera exposure meter cannot operate anymore such as in very dark conditions.

  • The camera manual exposure mode takes time to adjust and you will most likely end up missing the opportunity to get your shots. Even if you get it almost right , many times you had wished that the combinations could be better; like a faster or slower shutter speed would create a better motion blur or a bigger or smaller aperture would get more or less depth of field or a different ISO setting.

  • In short, you missed the shots because you wanted to shoot camera manual exposure mode. How can camera manual exposure mode help you to improve your photography? Should you consider other aspect of photography instead?


There are many things to decide when making a decisive shots; the lighting, the expression, the background, the pose, the moment, the focusing ...etc. There is no time to worry or fiddle with your camera manual exposure mode.

Remember the 80/20 rule; the 20% of the most important things that affect 80% of the results. 

Camera manual exposure mode is definately not most important things. There are many different modes to shoot. Your creative vision should be the most important;

A vision is the end result that you want to achieve. Once you have the vision, the rests will flow. 

  • What is the camera manual exposure mode?

    You have to manually adjust the three exposure variables


      b) APERTURE

      c) ISO. 

It is cumbersome and it takes time to achieve the perfect combination. With the ever changing light source outdoor, trying to get the "best" settings is always a challenge manually. On the other hand, using the fully automatic exposure mode, you lose control over "everything". So what is the right strategy?

  • But do all the professional photographers use camera the manual exposure mode all the times?

    Professionals will not depend on just one mode to work. They shoot in various modes to get the results. 

  • To get a better understanding on photography, join us in the two day photography workshop in Singapore to ignite your creative passion to capture the POWERSHOTS and to bring your images to a different creative level from the ordinary and flat images.

    John shares his personal experience to bring you to a new orbit in your photography journey not just by delivering a lecture or taking you for a photo outing. The 2 day photography workshop in Singapore with John does not only make you realize how to maximize your camera functions but also show you how to creatively visualize your final image to achieve a better and more powerful image. 

    Learn to master the important things in just 2 days.

  • What others say about John's workshop?

    - John has a great way of explaining the complicated and technical side of the subject into a clear and easy way of understanding it.

    - John has made a technically difficult subject into something very simple.

    - Your workshop solves my 10 years dilemma on certain settings and most of all, my passion for photography is back and alive again.

  • See Basic and Beyond Photography Workshop in Singapore