There comes a time for many amateur photographers when they decide to abandon easy-mode point-and-shoot cameras, and switch to a proper DSLR.
That’s when the learning starts.
And it’s not easy to get your head around the complexities of taking good pictures. It’s not just understanding exposure, shutter speed, aperture and so on, but the way that adjusting one of them affects the others.
If you find yourself in that position, the online Camera Simulator is a great way of getting your head round the basics. You’re given a scene, and a set of standardized camera controls. Adjust them to your heart’s content, and see what happens when you take the shot.
The website shows you instantly what photographic results you’d get from your chosen setup. It gives you the chance to mess around with the controls, adjusting things one step at a time until you find the perfect settings for the effect you want to achieve.
Of course, no web tool is going to be a substitute for getting outside and actually taking pictures, which is by far the best way of learning how to use your camera. But this Simulator is a great way of learning how a camera’s features are inter-related.