By Emily Broadwell
The shutter is the part of the camera that you hear click when you take a picture, it's a device that determines how much light you let in. You can pick whether you want a fast or slow shutter speed depending on motion. Shutter speed is measured in seconds or fractions of a second. The faster the shutter speed the less light but also won't blur with motion because the shutter is opening and closing fast not giving the subject much time to move, using a setting of 1/1000 of a second or more. A slow shutter speed will blur motion and be bright. The average setting for shutter speeds might range from 1/125 to 1/1000 seconds.
ISO is a sensor that changes the sensitivity of light. The measurements can be anywhere from 100 to 6400 depending on camera quality. The lower the number the less sensitive and the higher the number the more sensitive your camera is to light. Which makes you able to take a good picture early in the morning or at night when there isn't much light. The only downside is the higher the ISO the more grainy your picture is going to be. If you want a crisp picture, a lower ISO is needed.
Aperture is an opening where light comes into the camera. The smaller the opening the greater the depth of field, usually used when taking pictures of landscapes. The bigger the opening the the more focused on a small objects, like taking pictures of small animals such as birds, called a shallow depth of field. Think of these concepts as the shape of a megaphone. Also, aperture is measured in f-stops, they can range f/1.5 to f/15.
White balance is removing unrealistic colors from your picture, if something is white you should make it appear white in the photo. Camera white balance has to take in consideration "color temperature" which is how warm or cool white light is. You want your photos to be as accurate as possible. Different kinds of light will have different effects on the subject you are photographing. On your camera there might be settings to help control white balance such as auto, flash, sunny/daylight, cloudy, florescent, or tungsten.