Quest for knowledge

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by RadialPrincess, Sep 24, 2004.

  1. RadialPrincess

    RadialPrincess TPF Noob!

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    I have always been facinated with photography, and have only recently been actively seeking to learn more about the field/hobby. What really peaked my interest was the fact that I have been covering drag racing events (when I am not racing myself) and thus having to provide shots of the action from each event as well.

    I recently bought a Cannon Digital Rebel, and now I'm really motivated to learn more about how it works and get away from the point and snap. My first steps were to lurk around in these and similar forums, and getting some of the "Photography for Dummies" books from my bookstore. Those, unfortunately, have not been very helpful, and while I am trying to grasp a lot in these forums, a lot of it goes over my head as well.

    My question is to recall back to when you were in your Photographical Infancy.... what was the most beneficial tool in learning the technical aspects as well as the most useful tool in developing the creative "eye"?
     
  2. MDowdey

    MDowdey Guest

    welcome to the forums!

    for me, the best way that i learned, was to mess up. i switched the camera to manual and started playing with buttons. for you its even easier because you can just delete. the only real way to learn, is to do.

    hope this helps some!


    md
     
  3. Big Mike

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

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    Welcome.

    You have a big advantage in learning photography because you have a digital camera (a good one at that) and you can have instant feed back. Practice is the best learning tool.

    I found it helpful to write down little notes or cheat sheets for the things that I was trying to learn. Eventually the basics become 2nd nature and you try to learn something new...and so on.


    As md said, put the camera in Manual, or at least one of the priority modes (aperture or shutter) and play with it. Take lots of shots and try to figure out what works, what doesn't...and why.

    The basic "book learning" you have to know are the two factors that control exposure. Aperture and shutter speed. Understand what these are and how they affect exposure and each other.

    You will learn that the aperture also controls DOF (Depth of Field), and shutter speed can freeze or blur motion.

    Once you have the basics down, you can free your mind and concentrate on your creative eye.
     
  4. ksmattfish

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

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    Excellent advice, the only thing I would add is learn what a "stop" is, and how it relates to light, aperture, shutter speed, ISO, etc....
     
  5. malachite

    malachite Heavily Medicated For Your Protection

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    "Failure is education."

    "The more knowledge you have; the more you know you DON'T know."

    Don't try and be THE best, just be YOUR best and have fun. Hang out, read, listen, absorb................... Read the previous posts, belive em' and don't ever be in hurry, or (pun intended) you'll just 'red light' and it'll all be for not.
     
  6. BLS

    BLS TPF Noob!

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    If you're someone who likes to learn from books, try Bryan Peterson's "Understanding Exposure." Simply the best basic book on photography that I've ever seen. When I started, I read lots of books. But Peterson's was the one that made it all make sense to me. Its available in most bookstores. Some libraries.
     
  7. RadialPrincess

    RadialPrincess TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the advice... are there any books or hints specific to digital? The books that I bought initially were for film, and while a lot of it still relevant, I didnt know if there were more specialized books for digital...
     
  8. Big Mike

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

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    The technology is changing so fast with digital...I have seen lots of books & magazines lately but who knows how much of it is just advertising.

    I'd say, learn the basics of photography and learn your camera inside & out.
     

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