Bob returned to downtown St. Petersburg with his Nikon D5100 for a second 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson after traveling around the southeast of the U.S. this summer. He told me he kept shooting in manual mode (great) though now had some questions about what and when to change for getting exposure just right. I have written a photography tip blog post on this very subject, where I state you should change your shutter speed first. So what happens once you run out of shutter speed (i.e. hit 1/60)? This is what I went into the most detail on with Bob at the start of our lesson refreshing him on shooting in manual mode and letting him know my thought process for why I adjust shutter speed first, then aperture, then finally ISO if necessary. In this way, there is never a question of what shutter speed one should use, you use the shutter speed necessary to get the exposure you want. Then it is a matter of what you need to adjust if you reach the handheld shutter speed limit of 1/60th (for wide angle lenses).
After that exposure chat we walked around the downtown skyscrapers practicing it. By having Bob make adjustments while looking through the viewfinder, I was teaching him to be not only efficient in changing settings, but also accurate as the camera has to be pointed at the actual subject in order to get a proper meter reading. I feel confident with more practice Bob will be able to manually shoot in any lighting conditions and get the exposure he wants. Now what to do about shutter speed once he gets a tripod . . . ?