how to focus on the eye

edited September 2012 Posted in » Nikon D3100 Forum
People say that while shooting we need to focus on the eye. How do we do that? Is it the red dots we see in the viewfinder while shooting? When I look through the viewfinder, I see around eight red dots. Is that the focus point? Do we have to put one red point on the eye before we shoot? How do we focus on the eye?


  • edited September 2012
    I'm no expert and I just learned how to do this yesterday, but you can change your focus points to single focus point and move it where you want, like the eyes for instance. Read the thread about focus points and modes.
  • edited September 2012
    When you're shooting portraits we generally focus on the eyes as this is the part we want most in focus. We can do this a number of ways, but I will give you a starting point from there you can start learning new ways by trial and error.

    Put your camera in aperture priority mode (A) on the dial settings. Change the focus mode to AF-S, AF-Area Mode to dynamic and the metering mode to spot. If spot metering is too much too soon then stick to matrix. Spot metering determins how much light is at that point, so if it's a dark spot then the camera will meter a slowish shutter speed. I tend to focus on the mid tones like skin and just to left of the eye.

    So you've got your person in a pose. Now look through the view finder and move the d-pad around. You will see the red light move around the nine focus points. Compose the shot how you want it and then place the red cursor over the eye. Now press half way on shutter focus then you can recompose if you want by moving the camera around. Don't zoom in or out or else you will need to refocus. Once happy take the shot. Normally I use f/4 - f/5.6 for portraits but this can vary from user to user.

    Hope this helps.
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