I just got a Nikkormat FTn as my first slr camera. I got a fish eye, protrit, and zoom 80-200 lens. I understand how to properly load film and I definatly know how to take pictures and focus! BUT...I dont understand ASA 12-1600 and shutter speed b-1600, and aputure 5.6-1.2 work at all. Is there anyway anybody could explain these to me and how they work in laymens terms that are easy for me to understand? Also, how do you adjust these depending on the type of picture? I am using Kodak 400 film and taking will be lots of high light landscape and high ligh protrit pictures! Thanks for your help, I just cant understand it and i am leaving for vaction in like 1.5 days!
Non e of the parameters you mentioned are set as a result of the type of picture/subject. They work in combination with light levels, depth of field desired in the picture and the meter reading obtained.
Your best and easiest bet is to obtain a copy of Kodak's "Joy of Photography" to learn about basic camera functions and how to use them.
The ASA is set according to the film you choose to use. Lower ASA is higher quality requiring longer exposure times and higher ASA is lower quality but can let you capture images in lower light.
Your aperture vs. shutter speed settings are dependent on what the meter tells you is needed based on the amount of light coming in and the ASA film you use. Those setting are relational to each other. wider aperture requires faster shutter speed and smaller apertures require slower shutter speeds.
That's about all I'm going to say about it. You need to learn how a camera works before you can take pictures. Not so much the mechanics of how it works, but you need to THINK about what happens when you make changes in the settings and how they affect the picture you capture. Until then, you do not know how to take pictures, all you know is how to press the shutter release button.
try going to a half price or book store and look for a photography "dictionary" or handguide etc.
If you are still interested after all this time then I would recomend you find a copy of a book called " The Nikon Way " by Nikon of course and read it cover to cover. It will turn a few lights on the subject.,,,,,Roy