A question for the experienced....

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by tjones8611, Nov 22, 2009.

  1. tjones8611

    tjones8611 TPF Noob!

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    After several months on here and looking back at my original posts for C&C and those of others since, I definitely see a pattern among the noobs. Looking back at my first photos, I have no clue what I was thinking when I was taking those pics, over exposed, shutter to slow, or just simply not interesting. With the input of many on here, what I photograph and how I photograph has definitely improved, but this all begs the question…what’s the next step?

    For those of you that have been in photography for several years, especially seeing the conversion to DSLR, what motivates your photos? What do you seek out on the weekends? What advanced techniques are you trying to employ in your photos? As a noobie myself, I’ve played around with the panoramas, the HDRs, the week/strong DOFs, but looking at what I should focus on next, well, I guess Im in need of your experience. What is the practical next step?

    Don’t get me wrong, Im under no impression I have mastered the basics, but as I progress and continue to practice, what opportunities or techniques should I pursue to increase my skills?
     
  2. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Next is lighting.
     
  3. wescobts

    wescobts TPF Noob!

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    By no means would I consider myself at the level of a lot of folks here, but with the experience I have gained, I look back at the photos that have really moved me or should I say stopped me in my tracks, a lot of Nat. Geo. photos have almost moved me to tears. Without going to Africa or some corner of Earth, I try and duplicate the message.
     
  4. WimFoto

    WimFoto TPF Noob!

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    a lot of questions tj8611. the general and short answer from me is to continue looking at and taking pictures. what works for me is taking photos of things that i like and am interested in.
    so your practical next step? keep going.
     
  5. o hey tyler

    o hey tyler Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I personally think that if you have the creative drive and the willingness to broaden your horizons in terms of what you shoot, you can capture just about anything and make it interesting. I suppose it's all subjective, but to me photography relies heavily on what you are looking to portray by capturing an image.

    So I guess what I am trying to say is, be creative, read up on what you're interested in, and most importantly take a lot of photos and never be afraid to try something new.

    I feel like if you look for things to shoot, or go by a predefined standard as to what other people think you should do, then there's little opportunity to develop your own style.

    This is just what I think, I wouldn't consider myself a professional. But I feel like I've learned a lot since I bought my camera just by experimenting, and I learn more each time I shoot.
     
  6. tjones8611

    tjones8611 TPF Noob!

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    excellent feedback. Ive purchased of a few books on portraits and have read up on lighting. I try to keep those topics in mind when the camera is at hand. I continue to keep the camera at hand and snap away when inspired, sometimes that’s a building, a person on the street, a creek, trees, or even clouds. From evaluating the thousands of photos I’ve already taken, my theme so far seems to be nature or the outdoors and modifying the angle of perspective.

    Ive seen many candid photos on here of people on the street or public places, Im thinking of focusing on that, however it seems to be much more challenging to get an interesting photo of random people than it is to capture a bear foraging in the woods, seems odd i know!
     
  7. joemc

    joemc TPF Noob!

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    Great question.... I have been into photography for years and have a ton to learn... I do not think it is something anyone can master.... I have read a 100+ books... taken classes and still take classes.

    The first step is to try to reproduce the fantastic shots that you see... the next step is to try to capture new and self motivating shots that you do not see anyone else capture....this is when your ohhs and ahhs from others are going to go away for a while.... But it is needed to get and develop your own style.

    Just my .02 cents worth.

    Cheers, joe
     
  8. tjones8611

    tjones8611 TPF Noob!

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    Oh, and I must add to that the weekly contest on here intrigues me. For the past three weeks I had the intent to enter the competition on Sunday, but an hour to be creative with the five topics, setup a shot, get it to the computer, and post process as needed is a real CHALLENGE! This week I finally tried, even though I was late and my submissions sucked wind, Im gonna continue. Im starting to believe the true talent is in the eye and mind.

    Trying to get 5 photos posted within an hour that are appealing to a mass audience is much more difficult than I would have ever thought.
     
  9. maoparungao

    maoparungao TPF Noob!

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    Try to make your photos tell a story. Instead of shooting a certain subject per se as most beginn do. Try to fix or arrange your subject in a certain way so that they can convey a message or story.
     
  10. DScience

    DScience No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    It's all about the lighting.
     
  11. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The things you mention that you have worked on (HDR, DOF,...) are what I consider more technical things. Things that need to be learned, but still basic.

    And that is great. Everyone needs the basics to start.

    Have you looked into composition and getting a better understanding of the basic rules there? Things like leading lines, rule of thirds, triangles, S shapes,...? That could be another place to learn.

    While I agree that rules are made to be broken, I strongly believe that if you want to break the rules, you have to understand them first and know why you are breaking them.

    Once you work on various photography rules, you can look at different styles of photography. Have you only done landscapes? Try your hand at portraits. Been doing alot of portraits? Change up that environment and try shooting an event. Minimalism, urban, sports, photojournalism,product, fashion, events,... there are various types of photography that all have their quirks and ways of working.

    I've only been doing photography for a year or so. I see it as I needed to lay the foundation by getting a good understanding of my camera and how it works. Then I moved on to various composition rules and learned how and why they work. Now I'm looking into HDR, long exposures during the day, while still working on composition rules. Next, I've been adding other styles of photography and trying those out.

    I'm going to move to portraits soon, where I plan on getting lights, softboxes, transmitters and such to start learning that and exploring.

    Its continuous learning, there is always something new around the corner. I shoot alot of images, and at first, not many make it to my "to be posted" list. But the more I go, the more I get.

    And hell, I'm having a great time doing it all.
     
  12. ZBob

    ZBob TPF Noob!

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    Charlie Parker once said: "Master the music, master the instrument. Then forget all this **** and play". That's the same with photography.
    Beginners shoot anything they think is beautiful. Experienced photographers shoot anything and make it meaningful.
    It is easy to master the cam. It is not easy to make a perfect composition.
    It is easy to take a picture of a person. It is not easy to show people the subject's personality only through an image.
    The main difference between a smart beginner and an experienced senior awarded photographer is on the details.
    Sometimes worldwide known professionals intentionally make mistakes. Sometimes these mistakes give the picture some characteristics that make it special.
    Read a lot, look at lots of pictures and also take plenty of them. According to Bresson, your first 10000 are the worst.
    You do not take pics with a camera. You take pics with everything you are.
     

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