I am so new I will sound really dumb

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by meme84, Jul 9, 2009.

  1. meme84

    meme84 TPF Noob!

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    ok so i really know nothing and i am hoping that you guys can help me out. ok here are just some simple things i need to understand

    one -when i shoot in nat light do i have to use a flsh and why or why not

    two- how do i tell if i am under or over exposing

    three- do i need a difusser or refector to shoot beach photography

    four-what lens should i get for a canon 30d to use only in nat light and that has great background bluring .

    five-how do you get perfect lighting?

    sorry i know this is not a perfect post and the wording might be really off pls forgive me .
     
  2. AduNeButt

    AduNeButt TPF Noob!

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    1 - If you're shooting in enough natural light that you don't need to brighten up your picture, then no you wouldn't need a flash..

    2 - Underexposing is when the picture is too dark, overexposing is too bright and blown out.

    3 - This is once again all based on your natural lighting conditions.

    4 - If you want good background blurring, look for a lens that people have reviewed saying it has good bokeh. Bokeh is essentially how well the objects are displayed away from the point of focus (basically the blurry part of the picture).

    5 - The best time for shooting in natural light is usually around an hour before sunset. The lighting is not too harsh and generally very soft. Getting perfect lighting takes either good timing with the sun or a good light setup.

    A lot of your questions will be answered once you start shooting. Being able to realize good lighting conditions and knowing how to alter your settings in order to achieve good lighting comes with experience. Once you start shooting you'll soon realize when you need to use your flash, and when the best times of the day are to shoot.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    Do you mean 'natural' light?
    You don't have to do anything. You can use or not use flash in just about any situation.

    If you have areas that are completely 'blown out' white, with no detail...it's probably overexposed. If you have black shadows with no detail, it's probably underexposed. That being said, you are the photographer, if you want the photo to look brighter or darker, that is up to you.

    You don't need them, but they should could help a lot.

    The EF 85mm F1.2 L, would be great for this...but it's very expensive. What is your budget?

    What do you mean by perfect lighting? I would describe perfect lighting as light that allows the photographer to achive their vision for the photo...so it depends on what you want to do. How do you get good/better lighting? Practice, experience & knowledge.
     
  4. sunbeam

    sunbeam TPF Noob!

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    Hey Meme84, welcome to the forum! Don't feel like you sound dumb, AT ALL! That's why this is a BEGINNERS forum. If we all knew it all, we wouldn't be on here. :)

    I'm still fairly amateur'ish' too, but I'll try to help you out as much as I can, and I'm sure others will have links to great articles and mor EXPERT advice :)

    1. It depends on if there are alot of shadows or if there is harsh sunlight, whether to use flash or not. Sometimes flas hcan fill in the shadows in the picture. Especially if you are in really harsh sunlight, or a really shadowy location.

    2. You can generally tell, just by checking your pic after you take it. One thing I learned that really helped me when I started out, was that in really bright situations, to OVER expose by a half to full stop, because your camera is going to want to underexpose your image. And you actually under expose and image by a half/full stop in a darker situation. But anyways, just look at your meter in your camera... and read up about histograms.

    3. Yes. I think diffusers and reflectors are an awesome tool! Especially for a place like the beach where it's really sunny. Use the diffuser to soften mid day sun, and the silver or white reflector is AWESOME to give you a little extra light, or fill in shadows.

    4. If you like the background being blurry and don't mind a prime lens, go for the 50 mm 1.8... I think the cannon is 1.8? (I use pentax)

    5. I wish I knew! LOL it's really a combination of things. Learning to use natural light, or learning to use flash properly (something I still need to do!)..... using refectors if needed. I guess it's alot of luck and alot of skill combined? ;)

    Good luck with everything! I look forward to seeing some of your photo's on here.
     
  5. meme84

    meme84 TPF Noob!

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    do I need to meter when I shoot and how does that work and also should i shoot raw thank you agian
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Most cameras have a built-in light meter, which is what the auto modes use to determine the exposure....but you are free to override the suggested settings or to shoot in manual.
    Metering & deciding your exposure is a whole topic itself. It's not imperative that you become an expert but the more you understand, the easier it will be to achieve optimum results rather than relying on the camera's meter.

    I would suggest that you always shoot in Raw.
    There will probably be a learning curve for processing them (good software really helps, check out Adobe Lightroom).
     
  7. Figment

    Figment TPF Noob!

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    Something I haven't seen anyone mention yet, at least as far as shooting in Sunlight, filters help A LOT. A Good polarizer acts like window tint, taking some of the glare out of the light.

    As for Format, I for one shoot in both Raw and JPG, simply because my wife doesn't like to fuss with Photoshop. "Open the folder, browse the pictures, print what I want"....

    You'll learn from experience. Don't be afraid to go out and "play". The nice thing about digital is you can fire off as many shots as you want and you're not burning film. I must have fired 5-600 shots the first 2 days after I bought my D40. (I recently got into still photoging as well)
     
  8. tom beard

    tom beard TPF Noob!

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    It's like the old joke when a man stops another on a NY street and asks, "How do I get to Carnegie Hall?" The man says, "Practice." You're not dumb because you ask good questions. From the guidance you've been given, you'll be on the right track. One trick I learned about fill light is to get a thin piece of plywood or even cardboard and paint one side flat white and spray glue aluminum foil (shiny side out) on the other side. You can reflect light on a face that's too shadowy on one side and use it as a fill light. Of course you have to bring a friend to hold it, and if you make it too big, stay out of the wind.
    Tom Beard and I'm dumber****dummer? Stupid.
     

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