new to photography--need help

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Gurl_behind_The_lens, Nov 3, 2003.

  1. Gurl_behind_The_lens

    Gurl_behind_The_lens TPF Noob!

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    Ok, I know the basics about photography, but I want to know more. I'm only a freshmen in high school and i'd like to base my career on photography. I have a canon rebel 2000 SLR and Its not really working out the best for lanscapes which im mainly interested in. Does anyone have an suggestions on what to do to make it more clear and possibly some different lenses? i've been looking into Polarizer filters also.

    Oh also I take pictures at friends horse shows which is a lot of action shots..any tips?

    Thanks in advance!

    --Beth 8)
     
  2. MDowdey

    MDowdey Guest

    hi beth!! first off..welcome to the boards!!! secondly,filters are great but you really want to focus on the lens. I had a couple different third party lenses for my nikon that werent very clear. then i got a nikkor fixed 50 mm and the pictures were so much clearer. so my advice is to invest in a good quality lens maybe even wide angle.


    hope that helps!

    md
     
  3. Gurl_behind_The_lens

    Gurl_behind_The_lens TPF Noob!

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    i have a 28-80MM..so do you suggest maybe a 17-40mm? people have told me to try that.
     
  4. drlynn

    drlynn TPF Noob!

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    Start with a plain Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens. They are $69.95 new at Adorama and B&H. You will never find a sharper lens, regardless of price.

    Then, when you decide to branch out to zooms, go to some photography web sites, like popphoto.com and read the Popular Photography reviews of the type lenses you're looking at. Chances are, they have tested the lens you want, and will have the results of their tests on the site.

    Also, invest in a tripod. There is not a human hand that can hold a camera as still as a tripod. For landscapes and other non-moving objects, you will get much sharper results.

    For sharp stop-action shots, you will need to make sure your film is fast enough that you can get a good exposure in the 1/500 shutter speed range. Usually outside a good quality ISO 400 film (such as Fuji NPH 400 or Kodak Portra VC 400) will give acceptible results unless you want to make prints larger than 8x10.

    Hope this helps. Feel free to ask questions if you want more info. Somebody on here will usually know the answer.
     
  5. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    As DrLynn said, use a tripod. I've done presonal tests on many cameras, and in every single one there is a noticable improvement in sharpness when using a tripod and cable release. If you don't have a cable release, use the self timer.

    I almost always use a polarizing filter when shooting color landscapes, even on overcast days. It makes a huge difference. You will need a circular polarizer for your Rebel.
     
  6. paul rond

    paul rond TPF Noob!

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    Congratulations, you want to be a photographer, that's great.

    What kind of film are you shooting? What type of landscapes are you shooting? That 28-80mm lens should cover most applications before you go out and buy special lenses and filters, they aren't really needed although do make a small difference and they all do add up in an entire system.

    Learn your equipment and develope good technique first. Have you learned how to use hyperfocal focusing on your camera yet? Perhaps your pix aren't as sharp as they should be because you are not focusing properly? All thes little things makes a difference but you have to get some experiance improving your pix as you go, later you can go out and maybe get into a larger format and invest in special equipment. Right now... a tripod and cable is a must when doing critical focusing and especially in 35mm and get that polarizer to boost your color shots, it's a small investment with the greatest improvements right now.

    Good luck, I hope we can see some of your work?
     
  7. Sharkbait

    Sharkbait TPF Noob!

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    I just got my first true SLR, a canon digital rebel. I'll second what everyone else has said regarding lenses and the tripod. For landscapes a tripod can't be beat. Even when you think you got a good still shot, the tripod is noticeably different.

    Also, for action stuff, I shoot a 75-300mm zoom (I shoot a lot of hockey games and soccer games).
     
  8. havoc

    havoc Jedi something or other

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    Tripod Tripod Tripod, we can't say it enough! Its like the American Express card, you should never leave home without it. What they are all saying about the use of a tripod is true, and great info. But i think the best most relevent reason to buy a tripod was missed. Sure it will take sharper pictures, but what you are really looking to do is slow down your shots.
    If your holding your camera then you just point and click. With a tripod you have to set it up, that allows you to really spend some time with your composition, framing the shot in your camera is the best way to avoid having to crop later. Make sure to spend time to really look at the object or landscape your shooting. Try looking at it with new perspectives, and try to pretend that you have never seen it before. (or anything like it) Don't be afraid to move several times to include, or uninclude objects, Bracket if your unsure about your exposure settings.

    But remember to slow down, even if you only take one picture that day, it will speak to you more then 4 rolls of quick pics will.
     
  9. seanarmenta

    seanarmenta TPF Noob!

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    you've got a great camera in your hands, beth. i have the exact same one. keep in mind that it's not the equipment, but YOU, the photographer that makes great images. so long as you know how to use the equipment you have, you'll be fine.

    ditto to everyone that said get a good tripod. you don't have to spend a fortune on one...look into the Tiltall with a 3-way pan head. it retails for $100 or less, and is very durable and stable. i still use my tiltall even for my medium format gear.

    for landscapes, get a circular polarizer. tiffen makes good filters. be sure to learn how to use a polarizer properly. there are several resources online which address it's proper use.

    i also have that same 28-80 lens, and it takes tack sharp pictures. these images were taken with that lens:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    for landscapes shoot at the smallest aperture you can to maximize DOF. i believe that lens goes to F32. your shutter speeds will be much longer, especially with the use of a polarizer (which takes away 2 stops of light) which is why a tripod is of the utmost importance. the cable release for that camera is about $25 and is another must-buy.

    good luck and hope to see your work soon.

    sean
     

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