For a lot of us, landscape photography is one of our favourite past-times. Being out with nature doing the hobby you love, really is something we enjoy.
It can get a little frustrating if we're not producing the standard of shots that we would like to however.
Luckily, there's a quick and easy “rule” (or as we like to call them, “guidelines”) that can save your daytime landscapes (or any other daytime shot for that matter), at least in terms of exposure and light.
It's called the f/16 Rule and is sometimes known as the Sunny 16 Rule (or even the Sunny f/16 Rule) and is useful for those who like a guide to landscape photography settings at this time of day.
What is the Sunny 16 Rule?
The basic rule is to shoot at an aperture of f/16 with a shutter speed of 1/125 when shooting at ISO 100.
Or f/16 with a shutter speed of 1 / ISO setting (or as close as your camera settings will allow)
It's basically a way of ensuring a reasonable shot under sunny conditions without recourse to a light meter.
Let's Look at Some Examples of the Sunny 16 Rule
These examples worth with film or digital.
For example, let's say you were shooting on 400 ISO film.
The formula would be f/16 and 1/400 speed.
With ISO 800, it would be f/16 and 1/800 speed.
I should try that 🙂
Nice tip but….
Surely at ISO 400 the shutter speed should be 1/500 (and 1/1000 for ISO 800)
Will be testing this 🙂
great tip. the shutter speeds and f stop coordination actually make a lot of sense.
F16 is the same f stop we used to study the hyperfocal distance in school a couple of weeks ago. but this article just put new light to why we were restricted to that number, specially with the 1/ISO concept. well done!
Tried this as soon as I read it, lol. It works well at 400, I will try it at 800 later. Thanks for the tip!
I learnt this “rule” ages ago in a course I did. And it has saved me a few times…
Thanks for sharing!
What if your camera can only go as low as f/8? Would lowering the equivalent shutter speed to half work?
Let’s say at f/8 at ISO 100, equivalent shutter speed would be 1/50?
Thanks for sharing BTW.
f/16 to f/8 is 2 stops apart(f16 to f11 to f8), so you would need to adjust your shutter accordingly, 1/100 to 1/400 or 1/500
thank you for the tip. I have problems figuring out what settings to use so this will be helpful to at least take the picture using the f16 rule and then experimenting with other settings.