New to site and just looking for direction and help-

VKcanonFan

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Hello all-
I am brand new to this site. I have been working with my Canon 60D for about a year now and have been taking photos for years. I'm getting better, but need help!
I probably need to just sign myself up for a college course, but with a little one and a hubby on the road traveling it would be difficult right now.
I don't know where to turn for additional help. I read and read, but I'm hands on, so I do better with real life experience and talking to professionals who are willing to sit down and share some of their own experience instead of reading it in text books!
The only problem... I haven't been able to find these people who are willing to sit down and allow me to work with them or learn from them. I have been shut down by several people who want nothing to do with my questions! So... how did THEY learn, where did THEY go for help?
I feel so alone in this huge world of photography! I have so much desire and passion for this art and need to know where and what can I do to get more help!

I saw some amazing photos by a local startup photographer on her blog site, contacted her (she had taken some candid shots of my daughter and her class that she has for sale!) and asked what equipment she used to take these amazing, clear, low light shots... she told me she wasn't willing to discuss this with me!

I want to keep moving forward, but am so frustrated that I feel I may lose my passion!
I am willing to spend money on equipment... I just need to know what is best for what I do! The camera shop I go to wants to try and sell the lenses that they are promoting that month or upselling to increase their commission!!!

I have a photo that has been selected for an art show this fall, and working on editing (using lightroom 4) I got a 20x30 print of this photo and was NOTHING like I was hoping it would look like.

Please, I know I'm an amateur, I have a lot to learn about the technical side of the camera. I would appreciate any help on where to look, what else I can read, who to talk to or sign up for! I'm willing... I just need the direction from professionals that can use their experience, strength and hope to help another out!

Thanks much!
$12884_4746587467650_1703203922_n.jpg
Here's a couple samples of the kind of work I love doing. $293147_10200161175977156_2013130481_n.jpg
 

ronlane

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I have a photo that has been selected for an art show this fall, and working on editing (using lightroom 4) I got a 20x30 print of this photo and was NOTHING like I was hoping it would look like.
Welcome to the site. On this photo. What were you expecting it to look like? Was it color or b&w? Is your monitor calibrated? From your comment, I'm going to say that your monitor is not calibrated, and that would be part of the difference in printing. Also, where you had the 20x30 printed at could be part of the problem.
 

tirediron

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Welcome to TPF - unfortunately some photographers feel that their processes should be a closely guarded secret. It's unfortunate, but I suppose they feel if you know how it's done, you won't be paying them to do the job... As far as mentorship, the best place for mentorship I know of are your local camera clubs. Cost is usually low to zero, and if it's even a half-decently organized club, you can get some amazing speakers in on different topics, and most clubs run the gambit of brand-new to full-time working pro all of whom are willing to help you learn and grow. TPF also has a mentorship program where you can pair up with a volunteer mentor and learn.

As far as buying equipment, my standard advice to people is: DON'T! At least not until you KNOW what you need. We've all bought a lens, body, or some other price item because it looked cool, or we thought it would help, and then learned that it wouldn't. Trust me... this is experience talking!

YouTube is a great resource as well; there are literally thousands of hours of great 'how to' on everything from the most basic "How to press the button" to advanced lighting.

And of course, there's always the old stand-by, 'Take a picture, post in the appropriate gallery thread and ask for C&C' (Comments & Critique). Some of the responses might be blunt, but they will help you grow!
 
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VKcanonFan

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Thanks Ron for the response! I have calibrated my monitor. (thank you)
I just need to know how do others talk among other photographers? Is there a club of some sort that other go to help each other out? I just get this feeling that there's this secret world and I am not allowed in until I reach some sort of level or something!
I ask others how they shoot in low light and they tell me, oh, yeah I used to have a problem with that too. I go on to ask how they figured it out, they just say... time. So... is this true. Do I just need to shut up and mind my own business and continue to fumble through settings/lenses until I finally 'get it' myself? I know there are so many variables in all situations. But I'm really trying to just find connections to talk through these situations and get some other ideas of which I have not thought of or tried. I feel like I make my job a lot harder than it needs to be. My photo editing time for just one photo shoot ends up taking me longer than the shoot itself!
Sorry if I'm not making sense.... I just feel like I'm running into dead ends in this art form that I love doing!
 

ronlane

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It can be frustrating at times. You can ask 20 people on here how to do something and probably get 25 answers, all different and none of the wrong. My suggestion would be similar to John's. Read on this site and others, live on youtube, watching video's about what you are wanting to learn. Read books about it.

These are the things that I did to help me improve. I also went to my local camera store and spent time asking questions and renting equipment and picking their brain about things.

I have yet to join a camera club but I think it would greatly help me and get me out more shooting.
 
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VKcanonFan

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Great info! I've been using youtube quite a bit! Especially with my editing software and backdrops.
I'll look into any local clubs. The only one I know of is a very old and tightlipped, guarded and cliquey club here in town! Unfortunately. I'll see if there's any others in Michigan.
I'll start using the C&C here too. I'm okay with criticism, and blunt! I'm getting pretty thick skinned with that!

Thanks again!! I DO appreciate any and all advice, suggestions and help! I want to grow and fine tune my passion!
 

TheEVP

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I'm new to photography as well and have had the opposite experience in getting information on how to better take pictures. Found out lots of friends are into photography as well and even some of the photography pros that I've come across have been very helpful. One thing I did learn is don't go right up to them and start asking questions. Build the dialogue, get to know them, research their work and keep in contact with them. Yeah, I have come across some of them who feel their "secrets" should be guarded like it's the recipe for Coca-Cola or KFC. To them, I say good riddance. The best advice someone gave me when I first got the camera is to take A LOT of pictures at first. See which ones you liked the best and read the metadata to figure out what it was that you did for that shot.
 

tirediron

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Great info! I've been using youtube quite a bit! Especially with my editing software and backdrops.
I'll look into any local clubs. The only one I know of is a very old and tightlipped, guarded and cliquey club here in town! Unfortunately. I'll see if there's any others in Michigan.
I'll start using the C&C here too. I'm okay with criticism, and blunt! I'm getting pretty thick skinned with that!

Thanks again!! I DO appreciate any and all advice, suggestions and help! I want to grow and fine tune my passion!
Check out local Meet-up groups; I belong to one in Victoria, and it's a great group; very relaxed, well organized, and much less political than many "real" clubs tend to be.
 

Tee

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mod edit - please do not quote spam. Just report it for the mods to deal with otherwise quotations can preserve the links/spam content

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