You're likely to hear these words from your fellow photographers, but what do they mean?

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When you just start getting serious about photography, you're likely to hear lots of different terms from fellow photographers, the "inside lingo" so to speak. You can easily Google most of them, but there are some slang words that are a little hard to explain. 

Here is your guide to the 10 most common slang photography terms. Do you know more? Leave your favorites in the comments below.


All The Gear, No Idea refers to a person who has bought lots of camera gear and doesn’t know how it all works.All The Gear, No Idea - slang words


“Ooh ooh ooh” is the chimp-like noise that photographers make after they take a photo and look at the camera screen. They usually do it after taking each shot.

Chimping - Slang words

Grip and rip / Spray and pray

A term for photographers who take as many shots of one subject as possible and expect at least one to be well composed and sharp.

Spray and pray - Slang words

Machine gunner

This refers to people who take many photos when they need to take only one. Such photographers usually select the fastest shooting mode on their camera and have a tendency to quickly fill their memory cards!

Machine gunner - Slang words


A shutterbug is a photographer who cannot imagine a second of life without photography. These people carry cameras during days and nights with them and shoot everything they see. They also are most likely to have their iPhone "at the ready" at all times.

Shutterbug - Slang words

Uncle Bob

"Uncle Bob" is the annoying photographer at wedding parties. He (or she) is a guest with a DSLR, lenses and maybe even a flash who pays no attention to the Pro photographer who was actually hired to shoot the party. 

Uncle Bob - Slang words

Fast/Slow lens

The maximum aperture of a lens is called fast or slow. A fast lens is about f/1.4 and lets in more light using a faster shutter speed. A slow lens is about f/5.6 and it needs a slower shutter speed. Fast glass (lenses) is more expensive.

Fast/Slow lens - Slang words

Light bucket

One more word for a fast lens. A digital camera sensor has a photosite that can be described as a light bucket.

Nifty fifty

A "nifty fifty" lens is fast, optically superb and lightweight. It’s 50 mm with the f/1.8 aperture. Usually it’s a great value for the money.

Nifty fifty - Slang words


This word comes from Japan and it describes the out-of-the-focus areas in the photos. This effect is usually created with a wide aperture. The pronunciation is either “boh-kay” or “boh-ke”.

Bokeh - Slang words