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  1. superjedi's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 2:14 PM - Photography Thread #1

    Hi all,
    I've been meaning to post this for a while now. There are so many people on
    TDH with amazing talents in lots of different areas. As some of Art's and others'
    threads show, these talents extend to photography.
    I'm just hoping that some of the folks with photography skills will chime in and
    give the rest of us amateurs any tips or advice in photographing our costume items.

    I own a Canon SX 50HS 12.1 MP digital, but probably use only 5% of the camera's potential!
    Any advice on camera settings, lighting, backdrops, etc. would be appreciated!

    Let's hear from the TDH shutterbugs.
  2. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 2:58 PM - Re: Photography Thread #2

    Hey man,

    I was actually thinking the one piece I could really give back to the community would be something photography related. I'm a professional photographer here in Victoria - I started in portrait and lifestyle work, but have moved toward corporate work recently (I didn't think to post my website as I imagined it would be some form of advertising against a code of conduct) I also am a secondary school teacher, teaching photography and media arts.

    I get asked a lot, "What makes a good picture? or How do I take a good picture?" This question is not only very vast and complex, but also very subjective, making it difficult to answer.

    What I can help you with is some of the technical aspects of photography as they relate to your camera and how you can use these tools to create your own images that you enjoy.

    Maybe instead of putting all kinds of information out there that may overwhelm some people, I will break down different areas of photography similar to that as I would teach a lesson to my students.

    Before moving forward it's beneficial to read through your manual and know your camera's functions inside and out (I know...manuals, eh? pfft!). But while all camera menu systems vary between brand, the general practice is all the same. So when I mention something like changing ISO, you should know how to do it as it works with your camera.

    The first lesson would be understanding the triangle of exposure

    How does that sound?

    Cheers
    Aaron
  3. High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 3:09 PM - Re: Photography Thread #3

    Not a bad idea....I learned a little about it in college durring my film classes, but still alot to learn. As with anything really. Have a Nikon D60, nothing special just the kit lense cause Ive been spending most spare $$ on the Fett.
  4. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 3:18 PM - Re: Photography Thread #4

    Hahaha - yes, photography can be an expensive hobby. I find a lot of Fetts also have other expensive ventures like fixing cars and such. We dream big

    With photography....or with any technology I find....it's best to invest in what you plan to get out of it. There are perfectly good cameras on the market for a decent price (especially in the amateur world), but people seem to think that expensive means a better camera. So they buy the best camera on the market and still take amateur photographs.
  5. High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 3:48 PM - Re: Photography Thread #5

    Same goes for car guys I suppose...
  6. superjedi's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 4:11 PM - Re: Photography Thread #6

    Quote DeathProof said: View Post
    . . .

    The first lesson would be understanding the triangle of exposure

    How does that sound?

    Cheers
    Aaron
    Aaron, any and all advice is appreciated! I generally just set the dial on my Canon to "Auto" and let her rip!
    Things I'm most interested in learning:
    --Best types of lighting for a static prop (natural light/incandescent/etc.)
    --Ways to better capture more subtleties of color than on the "Auto" setting

    At least for a start.
  7. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 4:26 PM - Re: Photography Thread #7

    Good to know!!

    What I will try to do is get you off Auto and onto Manual. That way, you have complete control over your settings.

    In terms of lighting, we can go through natural light vs tungsten and how to set white balance to get the best colour temperature. For static props, if you're looking for a studio look, we can get into how to set up flashes and neutral backgrounds.

    For changing colour representation, there are a few settings on cameras (some call it 'Vivid' setting compared to a 'normal' setting). This tends to just increase overall saturation of the image. I personally keep my camera on normal and colour correct the raw photograph in post.

    I'll start the first lesson on exposure in the next day or so
  8. superjedi's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 8:09 PM - Re: Photography Thread #8

    Sounds great! Looking forward to getting some more "oomph" out of my camera.
  9. locitus's Avatar
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    Oct 31, 2013, 8:27 PM - Re: Photography Thread #9

    I'm using a Nikon D2X (12 MP), usually with a 35 mm F1.8 lens. This camera using a DX sensor, that lens is more like a 50 mm, which is intentional and why I use it.

    D2X is an old and heavy professional camera, a handmedown from my father. It's big and heavy, has way too many features and compared to even yesteryears cameras, way too few ISO settings (only decent up to 800). But it's rugged, reliable, and with a flash or good lighting, it takes great shots.
  10. redkraytdragon's Avatar
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    Nov 1, 2013, 2:03 AM - Re: Photography Thread #10

    I'll be following this thread as well...
  11. MrDickJones's Avatar
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    Nov 1, 2013, 10:17 AM - Re: Photography Thread #11

    wow, what a great thread! I'm a digital artist and my weakness has always been photography. i will be following this one closely as well!
  12. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 2, 2013, 11:50 PM - Re: Photography Thread #12

    Lesson 1 :: Know Your Camera - Understanding Exposure

    Alright ladies and gents. Here it is. Hopefully the first of a good bunch of lessons to help you better understand your cameras and take more pleasing photographs of all the work you put into your Fetts (and everything else in between!) The first thing we are going to look at is exposure. Exposure is essentially how light or how dark the image is when viewed (not highlights and shadows, this is different). The goal of every photograph should be to try to replicate what the photographer sees through the camera. For most, you probably use some form of auto - either you let the computer control the shutter, the aperture, or everything. This way, the computer judges based on environment what it thinks is a properly exposed image. Here is a brief diagram of how a camera receives information, and a few examples of ill-exposed photographs.




    Overexposed Image:



    Underexposed Image:




    One of the first steps to have complete control over this is to get off the auto and switch to manual! Scary, I know. But don't worry, you'll get there But before we do that...we have to talk about something else... one of the more obvious, but easily cast aside points....knowing your camera!

    What kind of camera do you have? A point and shoot? Camera phone? (D)SLR? Regardless of what tool you are working with, you need to be sure of its capabilities and its limitations. There are reasons why expensive gear is so costly – it has fewer limitations.

    For instance, ever take a blurry photo in a poorly lit convention hall? It’s quite possible that your camera didn’t have a flash option (or wasn’t selected), or that your shutter speed was too slow. Or what about taking a non-stalkerish picture of a celebrity from across the street, but when you looked at your display it was extremely small and grainy? Chances are your camera’s zoom wasn’t strong, and to make up for the slow shutter speed and aperture, the auto in your camera increased the ISO.

    These are all limitations that your camera can experience based on the quality of camera that you have. Typically camera phones have the most limitations primarily because they are a phone, internet browser, mail client, text messenger, accountant, socializer, and angry birds application first before a camera. Point and shoot cameras are next in line for their limitations, although they have improved greatly over the years. When digital first came out, I remember being so stoked to get a 2 megapixel Sony Cybershot. More on megapixels and the ongoing war later. Last in line are the DSLRs, and even they have separate categories (Entry Level, Enthusiast/Hobbyist, Professional). Get to know what you are working with. Read the manual inside and out, backwards and frontwards. Know what your camera is capable of in terms of its aperture, shutter speed and ISO limitations so when you a take a picture you’ll understand why it turned out the way it did.

    Aperture? ISO? Shutter? These voodoo words are all part of the triangle of exposure in photography. It doesn’t matter what you’re shooting, you need to understand how to properly expose a photograph before you start chucking your seemingly useless camera into the ocean. The camera is only part of what makes a photographer. The rest is knowing how to use the gear and work with what you have.


    Aperture




    Similar to that of the human eye, the aperture is actually part of the camera’s lens. The wider the aperture, the more light is able to enter the camera and hit the camera’s sensor. The smaller the aperture, the less light that goes in. Ever walk into a dark room? What happens to our pupils? They dilate to let more light in! And when we walk outside and get blinded? Our pupils constrict to let less light in. Eg: Check out that scene in Jurassic Park where the idiot kids shine the light into the T-Rex’s eye.

    So when we are in a dark room, we need to open the aperture to allow the camera sensor to soak in more light. When we are outside on a sunny day, we need to close down the aperture to let less light in so we don't blow out the photo.

    Examples of apertures:
    ƒ/# 1.4, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22, 32

    A higher f-number = a smaller aperture = less light
    A lower f-number = a larger aperture = more light



    Shutter Speed




    On film cameras, when you pressed the shutter button, a gate would open for a period of time that actually exposed the film to the light coming through the lens. This concept has moved to the digital age, but only DSLRs have a physical shutter that ‘ca-chunks.’ Point and shoots and camera phones only have the shutter ‘sound’…a beep....or even barking dog…Whatever your preference is

    Having a faster shutter speed exposes the film (or sensor for you digital folks) for less time, freezing the subject. Longer shutter speeds can blur the image because the light is dragged along the sensor.

    Light trails (slow shutter speed, small aperture, on a tripod!):


    Freezing Motion (Fast shutter - optimal conditions = 1/4000s, but chances are you might have to fight with 1/500s with your aperture and ISO):


    Motion Blur/Freezing Action (Slow shutter but PANNING WITH THE SUBJECT while it's moving):


    Aperture and shutter speed work together because in order to create a properly exposed image, enough light has to be hitting the sensor. If the aperture is too small and the shutter too fast, the result is a completely black image. If the aperture is wide open and the shutter too long, the image is way too bright! There has to be balance between these two. BUT there is one more to throw in the mix before finding your Zen state.

    Examples of Shutter Speeds
    1/1000s, 1/500s, 1/250s, 1/125s, 1/60s, 1/30s, 1/15s, 1/8s, 1/4s, 1/2s, 1s
    Fun fact: Generally, to avoid any camera shake (where the shutter is slow enough that it reads your hands shaking the camera) you will want a shutter speed equal or greater to the focal length of your lens...OR...use a tripod!

    Camera Shake:


    While we mostly will be photographing still objects (props) I won't get into photographing action much. It's pretty complex, and takes time to master as more weight is being put on balancing your exposure to get crisp imagery.


    ISO

    Again, back in the days of film, you had to buy film based on certain lighting conditions. This film reacted (or absorbed light) faster or slower based on the type that you bought. If you were shooting in darker areas, you’d want to buy ISO 800 film because the film was more sensitive to light and absorbed it faster. ISO 100 film was used for bright sunny days because it reacted slower.

    Examples of ISO:
    ISO 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400+

    The newer DSLRs are not just focused on improving megapixels, but ISO quality. Generally, when you increase the ISO, you add a significant amount of grain (or digital noise) to your photographs. By improving the quality of the ISO at higher values, you are able to photograph without flash in darker areas than ever before.


    (This camera was on a tripod with a slow shutter speed. That's how the photographer was able to get a night shot at ISO 100!)

    In a nutshell, we have three things we need to consider when properly exposing manually:

    a) the light coming through your lens, b) how long your sensor is exposed to light, c) how sensitive your sensor is to the light.

    When you have all these three down, you will start creating properly exposed pictures. So the next time you want to throw it on auto, play around with your camera’s manual function and make some mistakes. It’s the only way you will learn what exposure is really about!


    Manual Exposure

    So, you wanna play with Aperture, Shutterspeed and ISO individually? Let's see what happens in your camera.



    For now, let's just look at the modes that generally appear on your camera dial:

    P - Programable Auto
    A - Aperture Priority (You control the aperture, the computer takes care of the rest - good for portraits)
    S - Shutter Priority (You control the shutter, the computer takes care of the rest - good for action that needs to be frozen)
    M - Manual

    For the sake of this lesson, we will only look at Manual.

    When in manual mode, you will have a light meter in your viewfinder.



    You will notice in your camera's viewfinder that it says the shutter speed, aperture, and ISO among other things (shots remaining, battery, white balance, etc.).

    What you will do, is based on your lighting conditions, and the effect that you are going for, increase/decrease your aperture and shutter to get your dial to the optimal exposure center. NOTE: This will NOT always be the best exposure. This is based on the camera's metering - how it is interpreting the light coming back from the subject. For best results, you will want an external light meter to read the light falling ONTO the subject....but this is getting ahead of ourselves. Also note that with some cameras the overexpose and underexpose (+ and -) may be reversed depending on your camera. This can be changed depending on your preference in your camera settings.

    It is best to set your ISO first based on your lighting conditions - Low number for sunny, mid number for overcast, high number for interior. For now, if you just want to practice with aperture and shutter, there's no shame in leaving your ISO on auto






    Stay tuned next time where we get into depth of field, composition and framing, among other camera tricks


    EDIT: More info added! Whew!
    EDIT: Photos used are not mine this time and were found on Google for educational purposes
    Last edited by DeathProof; Nov 3, 2013 at 2:09 PM.
  13. superjedi's Avatar
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    Nov 3, 2013, 7:37 AM - Re: Photography Thread #13

    Excellent info! I need to find something to photograph now and play with the setting on my camera.
  14. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 3, 2013, 2:08 PM - Re: Photography Thread #14

    More info and pics added!!
  15. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 1:03 PM - Re: Photography Thread #15

    Just a quick note: I encourage everyone to share your images of what is working for you, and what you want to improve upon so I have a better idea of how I can point you in the right direction!


    Lesson 2 :: Composition/Framing

    Some people say that when it comes to being 'artistic' you either have it or you don't. The fun thing about photography is that it is a cross between art and science. Even back when we worked with film, the whole process of developing film was more scientific than art. It helps to have an idea of artistic principles, but nothing that can't be taught!

    When it comes to composing for a photograph, there are some general rules that everyone should be aware of, but later, should not necessarily follow. If everyone followed the same rules, there would be no individual style!

    Composing your photographs is very important, and can be the only thing to separate a good photo from a mediocre one. If you’re looking for ways to frame and compose your photo to make them really stand out, be sure to read through this entire lesson as each technique can be easily forgotten.

    Rule of Thirds

    The rule of thirds is an old rule that applies to more art forms than just photography, but it has become a very common practice in the field and in my experience has often worked for the better.

    How it works is that the image can be split into 9 equally sized parts, divided by two vertical and two horizontal lines. The four lines create four intersections, which should serve as the main points of interest.



    The composition is divided into three parts - background, midground and foreground. The background is made up of the mountain/hills and water. The midground is made of the lighthouse, and the foreground is made of the waves in front of the lighthouse.

    The camera positioned the lighthouse to the right of frame to off-center the lighthouse. This allows for a much more pleasing picture. Should the lighthouse have been positioned in the center of the picture, more of the powerlines would have been shown, and the negative space to the left of the lighthouse would have seemed more awkward.

    Framing Your Subject

    Look for natural frames in the scenery you have, it can be anything at all; having some frames can do wonders for a photograph.



    Try to never cut off a small part of an object, such as a person’s hand or the ear or tail of an animal. For years my opa would cut off the feet of all our family photos. If you leave an entire arm outside the frame it usually doesn't look odd, but if there’s something small like a hand missing the viewer will notice it in a different way and it can be very distracting at times.


    Try to have the whole subject in frame or crop tighter to make the image simpler.

    Lines and Shapes

    Lines and shapes are everywhere; try to use them to your advantage. They can draw the viewer into the picture or they can guide the eyes to a point that you normally wouldn't pay so much attention to. Both symmetrical and asymmetrical lines and shapes are a great asset.



    Simplicity

    Less is more! Focus on the small things instead of the entire scene. This obviously won’t work for every scene you’re shooting but as a quick rule it’s often good to keep your compositions clutter free and with less distractions. Use your best judgment!

    If you ask me, the first photograph on the left is nothing special at all while I personally really like the one on the right. The “only” difference here is that I isolated the object in the second photo. This helps the few things stand out more. Metal, stone, wood and water. Simple and clean.



    Empty Space

    Negative space should not be underestimated. It can be a great way to simplify your image and draw attention to a certain point in the photograph. Don’t be afraid to use empty spaces in your photographs. Empty spaces usually work very well in portraits, just keep in mind that it’s often preferred that the model either looks towards you or into the space so to speak.


    (Cropped portrait, line, rule of thirds, negative space)

    A common rule says that there should always be more space in front of a moving object than behind it. If there’s not enough space in front of the object we often get the mental picture that it’s going to crash.


    This bird is obviously flying from left to right. If we framed with the bird on the right, it would feel awkward as there is no space for it to fly into.

    Eye Level

    Try to photograph on the same height as your object, be it a child, a pet or a small bird. Instead of photographing the child from your viewpoint some 6 feet above ground try to get down on their level and get eye contact, this creates a totally different feeling as you become a part of their world. If you get down on their level they usually respond to you in a different way and this will often give you photographs that would not be possible for another angle.




    Breaking the Rules

    It's alright to break the rules once you understand what they mean!



    I shot this at an event in town called JumpShip - bikers right around on a barge in the city's harbour. Pretty sweet stuff.

    If I would have positioned him off center, the image would not have the same impact.

    There are many more ways to break rules, but one step at a time
    Last edited by DeathProof; Nov 5, 2013 at 7:16 PM.
  16. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 2:09 PM - Re: Photography Thread #16

    Lesson 3 :: Depth of Field

    *all images are my own for this lesson*

    I just wanted to break Depth of Field (DOF) off into its own lesson. While it relates to composition and framing, there is a technical side to it that needs to be addressed.

    Depth of Field, in its simplest terms, is essentially what is in focus. Depending on three elements (listed later), the depth can be greater or shallower. When we talk about focus and how to achieve focus, we are working with what is called a 'focal plane." Imagine an imaginary line that passes from our camera to the horizon. The focal plane is where your subject is and what your are focusing on. Depending on your depth, you can have sharpness fall infront or behind your subject.



    There are two types of depth of field: shallow and deep

    Shallow depth of field occurs when your plane of focus is minimal. This works well when we want to focus on a particular part of an object. For instance, with portraits, we always want to focus on the eyes. With shallow depth of field, the ears will already be out of focus. It may be gradual, but it is still much softer than the eyes.


    Dogs with muzzles can be very hard to get in focus as the main target are their eyes. Because they move, many photographers will get their noses in focus instead. A larger depth of field will allow more of the dog to be in focus - if that's your preference.

    This also works well with macro (close up) work. Because our depth of field is so minimal, we can dirty up the shot with out of focus subject matter in the foreground and background of the picture and leave the midground completely sharp. With props, this works very well if you are showing one part of a detailed work.


    Shallow depth of field can help focus on all that detailed work!


    Macro shots are a great way to play with out of focus foregrounds and backgrounds

    Great examples of deep focus are landscapes. Since you want your entire frame full of sharp, usable material, you need a very deep depth of field to get your foreground, midground and background all in focus.





    Both shallow and deep depth of field have certain requirements to attain this type of imagery. So let's get a better understanding of the three elements to depth of field.

    1) Focal Length

    The focal length of the lens is how wide/narrow the field of view is. For instance, wide angle lenses range from 10-35mm, mid-range from 35mm-105mm and long range from 105mm+. Basic kit lenses for DSLRs are mid-range zooms (18mm-55mm, F3.5-5.6)

    So how does this work with depth of field? Well, the longer the lens, the shallower the depth of field. So, if I put my 200mm lens on my camera, my field of view is narrowed, the subject appears closer in my viewfinder, and the background is blown out (out of focus). If I put on my 24mm wide angle lens, most of the frame is in focus.


    This photo was shot on a 200mm lens to knock out the background, while not intruding on the subject's behaviour.

    Wide angle lenses are typically your weapon of choice for landscapes as they allow very sharp depth of field. However, I can argue this in my next point....

    2) Focal Distance

    Focal distance is essentially how close you are to your subject. The closer you are to your subject, the more out of focus your background will be. The further away, the more in focus your background will be.

    *Like camera bodies, lenses all have limitations, and it's important to know your lens' own focal distance limitations. Macro style lenses can move in much closer to their subjects where my long 200mm lens needs to be at least 6 feet away from the subject before it can be in focus.

    You can blow out the background with any range lens (wide, mid, or long). When it comes to blowing out the background with a wide angle lens, it's important to know that the closer you get to your subject in order to blow out the background, the more distorted the portrait becomes, especially in the corners.


    This photo was taken at 24mm, but extremely close to the subject. The result is the background being knocked out with distortion in the corners.

    3) Aperture

    Remember this guy? The aperture is the iris-like contraption that controls the amount of light that hits the sensor. The wider the aperture, the shallower the depth of field. The smaller the aperture, the deeper the depth of field. So, F2.8 will create much shallower depth of field than F22.

    "But Aaron, if I have my aperture at F22 to get the most out of my depth of field, my shutterspeed is going to be really slow to compensate and produce a correct exposure!"

    Gold star, little Jimmy, gold star. That means you better put that camera on a tripod. Landscape photographers won't leave the door without one. This allows the camera to work at slower shutterspeeds without producing camera shake. You may think you have steady hands, but to get tack sharpness, you need a tripod.

    *Pro Tip: Having a smaller aperture is also good for group shots so your friends in the back can be in focus and feel loved as well!

    So to recap, if you want the shallowest depth of field humanly possible, throw on a massive lens, be as close to your subject as you can (working within your lens limitations) and open your aperture as wide as it goes (again, lens dependent - your kit lens may only go as wide as 3.5). If you want to see from here to the edge of the world, throw your camera and a wide angle lens on a tripod and close the aperture down as small as it can go.


    This was shot on a macro lens, very close to the subject, 3.3 aperture at 105mm. Essentially turning the background into creamy bokeh goodness.

    Fun Fact: "Bokeh" is the term used to describe the out of focus elements. Depending on the lens used, they can be circular, hexagonal, octagon, etc.

    This image has circular/elliptical bokeh.

    By controlling depth of field, we are able draw attention to a specific element in a photograph, or take away distracting elements. I am a huge depth of field fan. Something about creamy backgrounds (bokeh) just adds so much more punch to a photo. But depth of field can also be an issue for beginners as too much of the image may be out of focus. Play around with the three elements and see what type of images you can create!
    Last edited by DeathProof; Nov 5, 2013 at 7:14 PM.
  17. superjedi's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 4:20 PM - Re: Photography Thread #17

    Gah! I'm falling behind already. . . LOL
    I don't have a lot of free time during the week, but I intend to re-read everything
    and try to get some practice shots this weekend. Thanks for doing this, DP!
  18. Lucksy31's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 8:55 PM - Re: Photography Thread #18

    GREAT information, and very much appreciated.
  19. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 9:18 PM - Re: Photography Thread #19

    Thanks guys! I'm looking forward to seeing what you can come up with!

    I'm getting a large assortment of Dakota's metal pieces soon (a week or so?), so I'll do a whole shoot on photographing metal and props - behind the scenes and what I'm shooting.

    Therefore, the next lesson will be more tuned with what most of you are probably looking for - studio prop work.

    Anything else you'd like to know in the meantime?
  20. Jc27's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 9:48 PM - Re: Photography Thread #20

    This is going to be a great thread. Thanks to deathproof for doing it. I know almost nothing about taking pics so I will find all this information very useful. Now I just have to get a real camera, any suggestions for a complete noob?
  21. superjedi's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 9:50 PM - Re: Photography Thread #21

    Quote DeathProof said: View Post

    Anything else you'd like to know in the meantime?
    Yes. Can you come over and take some pics of my helmets for me?

    Seriously, all this info is tremendously appreciated. I have downloaded a digital
    version of my camera's manual. Much more convenient to have it on my laptop than
    go digging for the camera box in the closet every time I want to know how to do something!
  22. Jc27's Avatar
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    Nov 5, 2013, 9:51 PM - Re: Photography Thread #22

    Do we get college credit for reading this lol? This is like taking a free photo class, it's awesome.
  23. DeathProof's Avatar
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    Nov 6, 2013, 2:15 PM - Re: Photography Thread #23

    Quote Jc27 said: View Post
    This is going to be a great thread. Thanks to deathproof for doing it. I know almost nothing about taking pics so I will find all this information very useful. Now I just have to get a real camera, any suggestions for a complete noob?
    The type of camera you get all depends on what you aim to get out of it. What do you want to do with it (aside from the obvious of taking pictures). Do you want it to be easy to travel with? Do you want interchangeable lenses? Do you want to be able to blow up prints really big? Do you want to be able to shoot in lower light? ...

    The more questions you ask yourself, the better of a filter you start creating for what type of camera would suit you best. ....all of this of course has to fit within whatever budget you create for yourself.

    Brand has nothing to do with it, but I'm a Nikon guy. My father was a Nikon guy, and because of the 'passing of gear' I became one as well. But I'd rather stay clear of the Canon Vs. Nikon debate because really...they both do well. I also personally prefer the Nikon menu systems to the Canon cameras. That's another thing - it may seem a bit trivial at first, but a camera really has to fit right in your hands. The hobbyist/amateur cameras are made of a cheaper material to keep the cost down, and thus weigh less. I need a heavier camera - I find it steadies my hands.

    So, saying that, if you're just starting off, take a look at the Canon or Nikon websites. The Nikon lines are divided up as follows:



    Check out the D3200 (should be updated to D3300 soon) or D5300. These are entry level cameras that sport good video and megapixels. They feel very small in the hands, but can use different lenses. When it comes to these 'consumer' cameras, there are limitations like I mentioned in the first post. The limitations for these more affordable cameras compared to professional or advanced cameras is that they typically have less features. You need to go into the menu to change your ISO, you only have one dial, and have to push/hold a button first before changing Aperture or Shutter and generally aren't very good in low light situations without a flash. Go into your local camera dealer, talk up the representative and ask to hold these cameras and play around with them before you make ANY purchases.

    Hope this helps


    Quote superjedi said: View Post
    Yes. Can you come over and take some pics of my helmets for me?

    Seriously, all this info is tremendously appreciated. I have downloaded a digital
    version of my camera's manual. Much more convenient to have it on my laptop than
    go digging for the camera box in the closet every time I want to know how to do something!
    Good idea!!

    Quote Jc27 said: View Post
    Do we get college credit for reading this lol? This is like taking a free photo class, it's awesome.
    Glad you like it, man!!!


    ***

    I think before the 'studio shoot' of Dakota's pieces, I'll do a quick lesson on colour temperature. Lots of us photograph our items in door, and then do a comparison shot outside and notice a huge difference. I'll touch on why
  24. BlueMilkRun's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    11
    Nov 7, 2013, 11:22 AM - Re: Photography Thread #24

    Great lessons Deathproof! You hit on the most important lesson, Manual setting is your friend! Learn it!

    I've been practicinging photography in one way or another for coming close to twenty years. I'm currently shooting digital with a Nikon D3200. I currently only have one lens for it, due to a home burguraly a few years back that saw all my digital camera equipment stolen (it was out on a table after a shoot), along with a big screen tv, xbox, and assorted other things. Due not having renters insurance at the time (I own now) I ended up replacing the stolen Canon with the D3200. It gets an awful rap because of it's megapixels (24.2) not really living up to their potential, but is a solid camera, although a little quirky. I've done portrait work, landscape, street, promotional, and all other kinds of photography with it.

    And I noticed you talk about making sure it fits your hand, THAT is actually pretty important. When I hold the D3200 in my pinkie finger curls under the base (haven't got an external battery grip for it), but it isn't to the point that I have real issues with it.

    Due to being old and learning to shoot so long ago, I actually prefer shoot mostly with film and have a large collection of "vintage" cameras (including some Kodak Brownies that I had to mod slighly to take 120 film). I still think I shoot better with film than I do digitally! My go-to is an Olympus OM-1 that is a brick but I wouldn't trade for near anything! Love hearing the heavy *CLUNK* of the shutter! Still working on getting a small darkroom made up to develop. Sending stuff out for developing is getting more and more expensive.

    But, enough rambling. This is a great resource. Looking forward to more installments!
  25. DeathProof's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    802
    Nov 7, 2013, 1:38 PM - Re: Photography Thread #25

    Thanks for the kudos, Blue Milk Run!

    I personally learned on film, and as a teacher, I think it's the best way. You are physically able to change your shutter and aperture via the knobs and understand what they actually do. It's a lot simpler and straight forward. It also forces you to take notes on your exposures to check your contact sheets after you develop, and lessens the 'spray and pray' method (hoping to get it right).

    Saying that...

    Nikon JUST release (like...seriously...November 5th)...a new camera called the Nikon Df. It's the body of a Nikon F camera (film), but it shoots digital (has the sensor of the Nikon D4). While it's a cool idea to have a retro style camera (doesn't shoot video either), the price point for it is ridiculous - $2700. My guess is that the novelty will wear off and this camera will come down in price fast. So keep an eye out for awesome discounts on what's sure to be a fun camera to travel with

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