Understanding ‘EXIF’ in Digital Photography

Understanding 'EXIF' in Digital Photography

 Understanding ‘EXIF’ in Digital Photography 

Understanding ‘EXIF’ in Digital Photography is what we will be talking about in today’s post. Hence, focusing on its definition and functionality.

Understanding ‘EXIF’ in digital photography is crucial for photographers and it cannot be ‘swept under the carpet’. Understanding EXIF in digital photography means knowing what it stands for;  Exchangeable image file format.   This is a standard that cites the formats for images,sound, and ancillary tags used by digital cameras, scanners and other systems handling image and sound files recorded by digital cameras.

Understanding 'EXIF' in Digital Photography 1

Understanding ‘EXIF’ in digital photography will make you comprehend how useful the EXIF data can be.  Flashing back in time, during the film camera days, cameras printed the time and date on the photo. Back in time, this was a good way to know when a photo was taken. The prominent challenge was that if the camera’s date was wrong, so was your photo.  Moreover, there was this appalling date printed on your beautiful photo! Hence,understanding EXIF in digital photography is key.

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Functionality of EXIF

Understanding EXIF in digital photography leads us to its functionality. With each shot taken with a digital camera, it records the date and time, and all other camera settings used to record the photo. This comprises the shutter speed, aperture setting,  the flash used, ISO setting, the focal length etc.  All these are saved with the photo in what is referred to as the EXIF data.   EXIF is actually a file format.   As the image is copied to your computer, the EXIF data is copied along with it, as part of the image.

How and Where can I find EXIF Data?

  •  A lot of web photo applications like Flickr show the EXIF data if available alongside the photo.
  • Most paint programs allow you to view the EXIF data (Photoshop shows you in the metadata window in Adobe Bridge).
  • You can find the EXIF data in Windows XP by right clicking on the image, choose Properties followed by the Summary tab.

Specialized and free programs like EXIF Reader for Windows or PhotoToolCM for the Mac show you the EXIF data and allow you to edit it.

EXIF – a Learning Tool

Flickr and some others display EXIF data alongside the photo. Taking a look at the camera shot data and the image can make you understand how different camera settings affect photo features.

Conclusively, EXIF data helps professional photographers doing photo review, know what the camera did, and know what changes can be made to improve the photo quality.

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