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A Short Course in Nikon D70 and D70s
Photography Guide Book
by Dennis Curtin

New, a Short Courses digital photography book for people who want to get better pictures with their Nikon D70s digital SLR camera or the almost identical Nikon D70 with the firmware upgrade 2.0. This beautifully written and illustrated guide, drawing on the much more comprehensive information on the ShortCourses website, pulls together answers to the questions you might have about using the Nikon D70s or the Nikon D70.

A Short Course in
A Short Course in
Nikon D70 and D70s


, 8.5 x 11, B&W book with spiral binding and accompanying full-color, fully searchable eBook. Book, eBook, or package at a special low price.

For more info
and to order online


New :a Short Courses digital photography book for people who want to get better pictures with their Nikon D70s digital SLR camera or the almost identical Nikon D70 with the firmware upgrade 2.0. This beautifully written and illustrated guide, drawing on the much more comprehensive information on the ShortCourses website, pulls together answers to the questions you might have about using the Nikon D70s or the Nikon D70.

  • Taking a Picture in Auto Mode
  • Using Menus
  • Using the Two-Button Reset
  • Reviewing and Playing Back Images
  • Zooming Images
  • Deleting Images
  • Connecting the Camera to a TV
  • Displaying a Slide Show
  • Hiding and Unhiding Images
  • Changing Image Quality & Size
  • Changing Exposure Modes
  • Using Digital Vari-program Modes
  • Using Auto Multi Program (P) Mode
  • Using Shutter-Priority (S) Mode
  • Turning Noise Reduction On and Off
  • Using Aperture-Priority (A) Mode
  • Using Manual (M) Mode
  • Changing the Metering Mode
  • Using Exposure Compensation
  • Using Exposure Lock
  • Displaying Histograms
  • Using Histograms
  • Using the Self-timer
  • Changing the ISO with the ISO Button
  • Changing the ISO with the Menu
  • Increasing the Sharpness
    of Moving Objects
  • Using Focus Lock
  • Manually Selecting an Autofocus Area
  • Increasing Depth of Field
  • Setting the Hyperfocal Distance
  • Zone Focusing
  • Decreasing Depth of Field
    in Automatic Mode
  • Capturing Creative Blur
  • Setting White Balance with the WB Button
  • Setting White Balance from the Menu
  • Setting Preset White Balance
  • Using Bulb
  • Mounting a Lens
  • Unmounting a Lens
  • Zooming the Lens
  • Using the Built-in Speedlight
  • Using Red-eye Reduction Mode
  • Using Fill Flash
  • Using Slow Sync Flash
  • Turning Off the Flash
  • Using Flash Exposure Compensation
  • Using FV Lock
  • Choosing a Shooting Mode
  • Selecting What to Bracket
  • Turning Bracketing On and Off
    and Selecting a Bracketing Program
  • Optimizing Images
  • Optimizing Images—Custom Settings
  • Using the Setup Menu
  • Using the Custom Settings Menu
  • Using the Playback Menu


The book is designed to work with the Short Courses site. The book explains how to get better pictures but you'll find more on that subject on the site. In addition, there is lots of information on the site about what you can do with your pictures after you've taken them.


Chapter 1
Getting Started With Your Nikon D70 and D70s ...6

  • The Nikon D70 and D70s —An Overview...7
  • Jump Start—Using Auto Mode...8
  • Good Things to Know...9
  • When Things Go Wrong...11
  • Using Dials and Buttons...12
  • Using Menus...15
  • Restoring Default Settings...17
  • Using Image Review and Playback Mode...18
  • Using the Playback Menu...20
  • Selecting Image Quality and Size...22

Chapter 2
Controlling Exposure...28

  • Understanding Exposure...29
  • Understanding Exposure Displays...30
  • Choosing Exposure Modes...31
  • Using Digital Vari-program Modes...32
  • Using Auto Multi Program (P) Mode...33
  • Using Shutter-Priority (S) Mode...34
  • Using Aperture-Priority (A) Mode...36
  • Using Manual (M) Mode...38
  • How Your Exposure System Works...39
  • How Exposure Affects Your Images...42
  • When Automatic Exposure Works Well...43
  • When to Override Automatic Exposure...44
  • How to Override Automatic Exposure...48
  • Using Histograms...50

Chapter 3
Controlling Sharpness...53

  • Eliminating Camera Movement...54
  • Sharpness Isn’t Everything...57
  • How to Photograph Motion Sharply...58
  • Focus and Depth of Field...60
  • Focusing Techniques...62
  • Controlling Depth of Field...66
  • Capturing Maximum Depth of Field...67
  • Using Selective Focus...69
  • Conveying the Feeling of Motion...70

Chapter 4
Capturing Light & Color...71

  • Where Does Color Come From?...72
  • White Balance...73
  • Color Balance and Time of Day...76
  • Sunsets and Sunrises...77
  • Weather...79
  • Photographing at Night...81
  • The Direction of Light...83
  • The Quality of Light...85

Chapter 5
Understanding Lenses...76

  • Nikon D70 and D70s Lenses...87
  • Zoom Lenses...89
  • Normal Lenses...90
  • Wide-Angle Lenses...91
  • Telephoto Lenses...93
  • Tilt-Shift Lenses...95
  • Macro Lenses...96
  • Lens Accessories...97
  • How a Photograph Shows Depth...98

Chapter 6
Using Flash and Studio Lighting...99

  • How Automatic Flash Works...100
  • Selecting a Flash Mode...104
  • Portraits with Flash...105
  • Using Fill Flash...107
  • Using Slow Sync Flash...108
  • Using Available Light...109
  • Controlling Flash Exposures...110
  • Using an External Flash...111
  • Studio Lighting...112
  • Studio Portrait Lighting...115

Chapter 7
Other Features and Commands...116

  • Shooting Continuously...117
  • Bracketing...118
  • Optimizing Images...121
  • Optimizing Images—Custom Settings...122
  • Using The Setup Menu...124
  • Using The Custom Settings Menu...129
  • Using The Playback Menu...135
  • Nikon D70 and D70s Differences...137
  • Nikon Software...138
  • Caring for Your Camera...139


A great photograph begins when you recognize a great scene or subject. But recognizing a great opportunity isn’t enough to capture it; you also have to be prepared. A large part of being prepared involves understanding your camera well enough to capture what you see. Getting you prepared to see and capture great photographs is what this book is all about. It doesn’t matter if you are taking pictures for business or pleasure, there’s a lot here to help you get better results and more satisfaction from your photography.

To get better, and possibly even great photographs, you need to understand both concepts and procedures; the "whys" and "hows" of photography.

• Concepts of photography are the underlying principles that apply regardless of the camera you are using. They include such things as how sharpness and exposure affect your images and the way they are perceived by viewers. Understanding concepts answers the "why" kinds of questions you might have about photography.

• Procedures are those things specific to one kind of camera, and explain step-by-step how you set your camera’s controls to capture an image just the way you want to. Understanding procedures gives you the answers to the "how" kinds of questions you might have.

This book is organized around the concepts of digital photography because that’s how photographers think. You think about scenes and subjects, highlights and shadows, softness and sharpness, color and tone. The procedures you use with the Nikon D70s and the Nikon D70 cameras are integrated throughout the concepts, appearing in those places where they apply. This integrated approach lets you first understand the concepts of photography and then see step by step how to use the D70 or D70s in all kinds of photographic situations.

To get more effective, interesting, and creative photographs, you only need to understand how and when to use a few simple features on your camera such as focus, exposure controls, and flash. If you’ve previously avoided understanding these features and the profound impact they can have on your images, you’ll be pleased to know that you can learn them on a weekend afternoon. You can then spend the rest of your life marveling at how their infinite variety of combinations makes it possible to convey your own personal view of the world. You’ll be ready to keep everything in a scene sharp for maximum detail or to blur it all for an impressionistic portrayal. You’ll be able to get dramatic close-ups, freeze fast action, create wonderful panoramas, and capture the beauty and wonder of rainbows, sunsets, fireworks, and nighttime scenes.

As you explore your camera, be sure to have fun. There are no "rules" or "best" way to make a picture. Great photographs come from using what you know to experiment and try new approaches. Digital cameras make this especially easy because there are no film costs or delays. Every experiment is free and you see the results immediately so you can learn step by step.

This book assumes you’ve mastered the mechanics of your camera. It’s about getting great pictures, not about installing batteries and connecting your camera to your computer. That information is well presented in the user guides that came with your camera.


Related Links

Nikon D50 Compared to Nikon D70s and Canon Rebel XT Spec's

Nikon D70s DSLR Image Samples and Nikon D50 DSLR Image Samples

See our earlier review of the Nikon D70 Digital SLR

Looking to buy the Nikon D70s ? We recommend B&H Photo and Video
Nikon D70s body only and single lens or twin lens kits available.
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