Brand New at Photography

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Lukargo, Jan 31, 2009.

  1. Lukargo

    Lukargo TPF Noob!

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    My high school has just started offering a Digital Photography course this year and I've been in it for a little over a month now. I never expected it to be so fun! I've learned what a few of the settings mean now, and have been fairly pleased with a few of my pictures. Over the weekend I was able to convince my teacher to let me check out one of the school's Canon Rebel Xti's. In the last day and a half I've taken about 500 pictures, but I've only really liked a few of them. These are the ones that stood out to me.

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    So do these look at all decent for a beginner? How can I improve them?

    Also, there was one thing the confused me while I was taking some pictures. The camera would occasionally focus then unfocus while I was holding down the shutter and wouldn't let me take a picture. What would cause that?

    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. puyjapin

    puyjapin TPF Noob!

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    Hi,

    What type of camera are you using?
    Its probably best to only post 3 or 4 at a time when asking for advice and maybe number them otherwise its not so easy to talk about an individual picture.
     
  3. cosmoepic

    cosmoepic TPF Noob!

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    first off only post a max of 4 when looking for any type of C&C and please number each photo

    im sure samanax will step in shortly with his list of beginner links so ill let him do that, but do some reading up on composition as well. Most of the pics lack a clear subject, however i can see you're trying to be as creative as possible. I do kind of like the mouse trap shot

    what kind of camera are you using and what settings are these shot on? you're comment about the camera focusing then unfocusing leads me to believe you're shooting in autofocus mode, or the whole cam is set to auto (seems that way with what looks like the onboard flash in every pic) depending on what lens you're using there is a minimum and max focal length, if you're "too close" to the subject with a focal meter that extends, lets say, 18mm at its furthest and 55mm at its closest then if set to atuo anything out of those ranges will unfocus. I really hoped i said that right....

    try using manual focus on subjects like this you'll get better results
     
  4. TheUndisputed

    TheUndisputed TPF Noob!

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    The only problem I have with newbie photographers is that they always go for the macro shots right off the bat. I really don't know what factor it is about the macro shot, but it's like they are a magnet for people who are using the camera for the first time.

    Please, diversify your shots. We don't care if you aren't capable of taking great pictures right now. Just show us what you have. We can't critique you if you keep taking the only type of picture that you do well.

    If you continue here at this forum, there are people here who have the expertise to guide you through everything you need to know about photography, how to use your camera, as well as post processing in photoshop. We understand that taking the macro shots are the easiest ones to come out great. Don't be afraid of your incapability with a camera, you are about to excel. You can't get better if you don't allow yourself open for critique, advice, and encouragement.

    Show us what you really have, and lay it all out there for us to see.
     
  5. chrisburke

    chrisburke TPF Noob!

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    way to many pics, they arent spaced so it's hard to tell where one ends and the other begins.. and they look like typical beginner shots...
     
  6. puyjapin

    puyjapin TPF Noob!

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    yes i like the mouse trap shot too
     
  7. Lukargo

    Lukargo TPF Noob!

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    Ah,sorry about posting so many. All of these were taken in Av mode with a Canon Rebel XTi. And yes, I was just using the built-in flash on the camera, because that is currently all I have at my disposal.

    So "macro shots", do you mean close up shots? You'll have to excuse my newbiness. When I say I'm new, I really mean I'm new. I just found out what the settings mean about a week ago. :-S I've been kind of obsessed with simplifying the background.

    What should I try taking a picture of?

    Here are a few I took today that our a little different.


    #1
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    #2
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    #3
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    #4 (This one didn't turn out the best, but I kind of like the general idea.)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2009
  8. kn4ds

    kn4ds TPF Noob!

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    To a certain extent, it's what people have around the house, so they go for the macro shots right off. My wife's the same way, I bought her a Nikon Coolpix for her first camera and right off, she's up *in* some of her flowers.

    I dunno... composition, depth of field, lighting... all pretty easy to pick apart and maybe teach a little bit with macro photos. Every flaw is so magnified, it makes it easier to point to each one and explain why it's a flaw and how to improve.
     
  9. HoosierJoe

    HoosierJoe TPF Noob!

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    Take some people shots and see how you do. Do some looking on the different forums here. There are also other photo forums out there with a lot of really great info and critique on them.

    And pay attention in class. I started in a high school photography class in 1975. Still learning.
     
  10. kn4ds

    kn4ds TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, "macro shots" refers to the extreme closeups... the thing with images you posted, for me, is that I had to stop and figure out what I was looking at in most of them.

    Now, before I go further, I believe that if *you* think a photo is interesting, then it is. Photography is art... sure, there are some technical aspects to learn about, and learn to use, but it's art. I see some art that makes me wonder if the artist was doing drugs, but just because I don't get it doesn't make it less valid.

    A lot of people find landscapes (photos of trees, flowers, lawns, parks, etc) boring. Others find photos of other peoples' kids to be the very definition of boredom.

    I think your photos are "technically" decent... perhaps some more depth of field, especially on the one I *think* is a saxophone. To get more depth of field, you need a smaller aperture... a higher "f" number.

    At the end of the day, shoot what interests you, what you think are interesting subjects. Anyone who tells you what you "should" shoot is just expressing their personal interests.
     
  11. Lukargo

    Lukargo TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, I have been shooting with my aperture pretty far open a little too much. I'm going to try taking it to the park and the main street in my town tomorrow to take some pictures.

    I do see what you mean about having to stop and think about what's in some of those first photos. When I know what I'm taking a picture of I usually forget that other people might not when I'm so close.

    There is little depth of field on these two as well, but I thought they turned out interesting.

    - #1

    [​IMG]



    - #2
    [​IMG]


    Thanks for all the help by the way. :D
     
  12. puyjapin

    puyjapin TPF Noob!

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    Something you may find useful as a test to learn about depth of field, ie if you want one object well in focus and the background blurred to make the object stand out. Use an object as a test, anything will do, a piece of fruit or your pet dog if he can keep still. Place the object somewhere where there is some background, meaning not just a plain white background and play about with your aperture on aperture priority mode. If you focus on the dog with the lowest fstop, widest aperture you will see the background is blurry. Try a few shots increasing the aperture a bit higher f stop at a time (smaller aperture) and you will find in each shot the backdrop gradually gets sharper. Now im not sure on the canon but on the nikon you can select focus dynamic area and choose the focus point, that way you can choose what area of the frame is most focussed, ie if you were shooting the dog it would be the eyes.
     

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