Using Aperture Priority in your DSLR (Getting the best blur background)


What is Aperture Priority?

Aperture priority, often abbreviated A or Av (for aperture value) on a camera mode dial, is a setting on some cameras that allows the user to choose a specific aperture value while the camera selects a shutter speed to match, thereby ensuring proper exposure. This is different from manual mode, where the user must decide both values, shutter priority where the user picks a shutter speed with the camera selecting an appropriate aperture, or program mode where the camera selects both.

(via Wiki)

Hi guys today I’m going to teach you how to use your Aperture Priority Mode and getting blurry background even in your kit lens! (18-55mm lens)

For Nikon users rotate your dial here:


and for Canon users:


Okay lets start by setting up your DSLR settings:

Photo 7-10-14, 9 27 36 PM

Set your settings to Subject Tracking Auto Focus.

Photo 7-10-14, 9 27 45 PMSet your metering to SPOT METERING.

(for Canon you can easily spot those settings at your screen)

Photo 7-10-14, 9 40 26 PM

Rotate the rear Dial in your DSLR to left until you reach the end of Aperture, mine ended at F5.3 (but usually depending at the range and the subject, my aperture goes down to f3.0,

  • If you really want a good lens and can lower the Aperture up to f1.8, I recommend you to buy a Prime Lens.

NOTE: The lower the aperture the more the background will be blurred.


Focus on the subject and take the photo.

Here is my shot at F5.3 aperture( don’t mind the shutter speed or as you can see at the camera, the shutter is 1 1/3, because it automatically adjust the settings for you in order to get the right speed and exposure)

Here is an example of higher Aperture at f36

NOTE: Shooting at higher aperture will not blur your background instead it will all capture your image without blurring any other subjects, and apparently it will make your image grainy without proper ISO. Photo 7-10-14, 9 42 35 PM



  • Lower Aperture (for ex. f5.6) The more the subject will be focused and background will be blurred.
  • Higher Aperture(for ex. f36) The more the subjects will be captured.

I recommend shooting Aperture Priority in Portrait shoots, Wedding Events and Focusing subjects.

Next post will be Shutter Speed Priority, stay tuned.


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