Shutter speed is responsible for three things, the brightness of the shot, capturing high-speed objects, or achieving motion blur. And achieving any of these depends on the time set for the shutter speed.
Slow Shutter Speed
For example, when the shutter speed is set to a slow speed, that means the camera shutter will stay open for longer. Which will result in capturing a big amount of light, hence making the shot brighter.
It’ll also cause a motion blur effect if the subject was moving or if an object moves in the composition during shooting.
And if you think about it the blur makes sense. Since the camera is slowly capturing the scene, it won’t capture a moving subject steadily.
The motion blur caused by slow shutter speeds can be used to create many different artistic scenes.
It can be used to capture rivers or waterfalls and give them a smooth-looking motion blur. It can also be used to capture birds and give their wings a magical-like appearance.
And besides the motion blur, slow shutter speeds are great for nature shots as well. Have you ever wondered how these milky way shots and sky full stars shots were captured?
They were captured through slow shutter speeds, or “Long Exposure Photography” as some call it.
Long exposure photography is very common with nature photographers who have a thing for capturing the stars, but it requires patience.
Capturing the stars from a pitch-black sky will require the camera shutter to stay open for at least twenty seconds to slowly capture the tiny light particles from the dark.
Fast Shutter Speed
Contrary to slow shutter speeds, setting a high shutter speed on the camera will make the camera shutter snap open and shut faster, capturing the scene quicker.
This means that the faster the shutter speed is, the more the camera will capture any moving subject and freeze it regardless of how fast the subject is.
For example, sharp shots of athletes in action can be captured without any motion blur if the shutter speed is high enough.