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Alrighty, let's recap. You can speed up and slow down shutter speed to let more or less light to the image sensor, and you can open and close the aperture to let more or less light to the image sensor. Shutter speeds are measured in fractions of a second, while apertures are measured in ratios, called f-stops. Together, these two numbers, shutter speed and aperture size, comprise an exposure setting. A faster shutter speed allows less light to pass to the image sensor, as does a smaller aperture.
Now believe it or not, if you are clear on this, you already understand the fundamental components of basic exposure. Really, this is it. When you or your camera manipulates exposure, all you are doing is changing these two values: shutter speed and aperture. With them, you can control how much light strikes the image sensor, and therefore, how bright or dark the image is. So, why are there two mechanisms for controlling the light that strikes the image sensor? The answer to that is somewhat complicated, but the good news is that the answer involves you, as a photographer, gaining a tremendous amount of creative control, and that is what the rest of this course will be about.
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