19 Photography Terms Every Beginner Needs to Know

Photography is full of complex terminology, and a lot of it refers to some tricky concepts. This useful short video runs you through 19 fundamentals that every beginner should add to their vocabulary.

Early steps into the world of photography can involve some regular trips to Google and Wikipedia to figure out what certain words mean. The team at Mango Street have put together a batch of words to save you some time and make you feel less like photography is a cult where everyone speaks in some sort of weird secret code.

No doubt, there’s a load more that could be added to this list, and there are plenty that, if photography were to start over, would probably benefit from being named differently: prime lens is a good candidate, though of course, there’s an interesting history as to why we’ve given this term to glass that doesn’t zoom. 

Manual mode could do with a bit of an overhaul given that you can pair it with auto ISO and have your camera expose correctly for you — not exactly manual!

F-stop is perhaps another candidate, though I’m not sure what I would replace it with. If you have any suggestions, feel free to leave them in the comments below. Oh, and let me know if I miscounted!

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Tomas Ramoska's picture

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Robin Mcdaniel's picture

nice post