What Is Aperture In Photography? – All You Need To Know

5/5 - (7 votes)

Many of the photographers who have come recently in the world of photography do not correctly know about all of the features of a camera. You may have heard terms like Aperture, ISO, Shutter Speed etc. Here, We will focus on Aperture and go deep on this vital feature of a camera.

This is one of the crucial aspects of a camera that you have to understand when it comes to clicking some mind-blowing pictures. It can surely add some amazing points to a photo by blurring the background, and it will focus properly on the subject.

Aperture also pinches the exposure to make the pictures bright or to make it dark. Here, we will give all the necessary points that you should know about it.

What is an Aperture?

In a simple way, you can think that aperture is the small hole, that you can see inside the lens. It lets the light come inside the camera. For example, you can compare it to the working process of your eye.

diaphragm of a camera dslr lens aperture
The diaphragm of a camera dslr lens aperture.

If you move between a dark or bright environment, the iris of your eyes either will expand or will shrink, that depends on the pupil. Where in photography, you can expand or shrink the size of the aperture of your DSLR camera to allow more or less light to reach the sensor of your camera.

As the surrounding light changes, the quality of the picture get changed as it appears bright sometimes or gets darker sometimes. The human eyes get adjusted to various intensities of light by shrinking or expanding the iris.

On a camera, you can control the flow of light through the lens by enhancing or decreasing the size of the aperture of your lens. It is capable of adding dimension to your photos by controlling the depth of field in a camera.

If you increase it at its excess, it will make the background blurred.

How the Aperture of a camera Influences the exposure

When you capture an image, the aperture of your camera put a profound effect on the picture. As a result, you can see the brightness of the image. This is also known as exposure.

Different aperture and exposure
Different aperture and exposure

When you will change the size of the aperture, naturally it will change the amount of light that reaches the sensor of a camera. If it is high, more light will come to the sensor that will result in a brighter image.

On the other hand, if you decrease it, less light will reach the sensor, and it will give a darker image.

Now, if you do the photography in a low light condition, like indoor shooting at night, you have to increase the aperture to capture a brighter image.

How Aperture put influence on the depth of field

You can understand the depth of field of a photograph where you will understand the amount on which the image appears to be sharp amid the nearest and the farthest point.

Depth of Field (DOF) Comparison
Depth of Field (DOF) Comparison

Now, let go thoroughly about the depth of field. If a picture has a shallow depth of field, it ensures that you have focused on the subject. But the background will be completely out of focus.

On the other hand, if a picture has a deep depth of focus, it means that you have focused both on the subject and background while clicking the image.

Now you must be thinking about how aperture put influence on the depth of field.

During photography, if you increase the aperture, it results in low focus, and if you decrease it, then it will result in sharp pictures with deep focus.

But increasing it makes the background blurred, and it is needed when you want a blurred background in a picture. You can see this effect on bokeh features.

bokeh image
Photo taken with aperture f/1.2 to create bokeh effect.

On the other hand, the small aperture decreases the blur effect from the background of an image. You may need this when you are clicking a beautiful landscape where both the subject and background need to be clear and crisp.

What do you understand by F-Number and F-Stop

Previously, we have discussed the aperture in general like large and small aperture. This also can be expressed as a number known as ‘f-stop’ or ‘f-number’.

Different apertures of a lens
Different apertures of a lens

If you buy a camera, you will always see the aperture is written in a style f-number. On the preview screen of your camera, you must have seen it shows like f/2 or f/8.

Some manufacturers also write it in the form of an f-stop.

How you will understand that your Aperture is large or small

Most of the photographer say that aperture confuses them, especially those who are new to the world of photography. Now you are must wondering how to understand the size of an aperture.

Here we will solve your problem. Always remember that a small f-number ensures a large aperture and a large f-number ensures small aperture.

For an example, an aperture of f/2 would be larger than f/8 or f/11. Though it appears still confusing. The simple way is that it is a fraction. And if you understand the basics of mathematics, then you will get the concept of it right.

How you will consider a good Aperture

Now we will solve the mystery behind the f-numbers so that you can understand what a good aperture is.

You can play with the aperture to control the depth of field and exposure. If you are capturing the images in a bright light condition, then it will be the best if you use an higher f-numbers to click perfect photos.

On the other hand, while you will click images in a lower light condition, then it will be ideal if you choose a lower f-numbers like f/2.8 so the sensors will get more light.


Now you know how to control the depth of field. If you choose large apertures, you can capture images with blur on the background that is perfect for portraits, where the all focus is required on the subject.

And if you want to capture landscapes with details, choose an aperture of high f-numbers. Here you can focus both on the background and the subject.

You may see that a photo becomes dark or bright with a particular f-number setting. As soon as you will get used to your cameras, you will understand all the details of all of the features of a camera such as an aperture, ISO, shutter speed etc.

By knowing the detail information about the features, you can utilize your device at its best.

Lastly, the size of the aperture depends on the lens. So, while buying a lens you must go through the detail description mentioned on the package. You will find the minimum or maximum aperture of the lens there.

We recommend that you should always go for a lens that comes with a large and maximum aperture. It ensures more light to pass through the lens which is very helpful in low light condition.

But these lenses are relatively costlier. So, consider that point as well.

Happy Clicking!

Source: Wikipedia, Photography Life, Digital Photography School


DSLR vs Smartphone Camera – Which One to Choose?

What Are The Impurities Present In Drinking Water?


Leave a Comment