Photography

27Jun10

I haven’t posted in a while. Mostly because this summer has been busy with work. I don’t mind working a lot, it’s just unfortunate how few hours I am left with each day. Anyways, more recently my small quantity of leisure time has been devoted to my latest hobby: photography.

A couple of Tuesdays ago I bought a camera (a Canon EOS 20D for the camera-savvy) which is one of those large cameras that real photographers use (for the less savvy). From what I understand, the tech in the 20D is ~5 years old which is an eternity in the digital age; however, I’ve found there are ways to subjugate that problem (specifically taking the raw image data from your sensor without having your camera process it neatly and then putting it on the PC and doing the processing there, since the PC has much more power than the camera–this is called post-processing).

I’ve done a lot of research over the last few months and I’ve devoted more time than I care to admit studying “good” photographs on Flickr (Flickr in general has become an obsession of mine). In my research, I’ve learned a lot about lenses, camera processing, lighting, etc and it turns out there’s a lot more to taking good pictures than pointing and clicking. But I’m a nerd, so I’m always excited to learn new things like this. Here are some things I’m learning so far:

Lenses: In my very limited experience with the craft, far and away the most interesting aspect of photography is lens selection. There’s a lot to them and they impact the final photograph more than almost anything else.

Lighting: This seems like something someone could study for a lifetime and never figure out. Different lighting yields different effects and it seems like one just has to take enough pictures (gain experience) to get a feel for how lighting will affect the photograph. Fortunately, in the digital age, the quantity of pictures one can take is limited only to the time one invests in it–there is no expensive film to print in order to see the final product. Anyways, moral of the story, light can and does make-and-break photographs and there really aren’t any hard-and-fast scientific rules for what light makes a good picture.

I’ll probably devote a decent portion of this blog to photography from here on out and I’ll upload some of my pictures. I’m not in any way proficient yet, but this blog and my Flickr photostream will hopefully serve to document my progress.

Also, it should be noted that, as a hobbyist web-developer of ~5 years, I’m a lot more proficient at Photoshop than I am at photography (but even at that I’m not used to editing photographs so much as I am general web graphics). At any rate, I’d love to hear what you think.

Thanks!

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3 Responses to “Photography”

  1. 1 elmediat

    Your three still life photographs, shoes, wet paint, best part of waking up and speed bike are excellent compositions. In all of them you made very good use of positive and negative space to ballance the subject and give appropriate context. You have made very good use of perspective and lines to draw the eye and create attention. You do need to work on lighting – adjust levels of brightness and contrast. This is evident in shoes and all of your portrait shots of people. For some examples of really good work by someone else who is starting out see Photography Adventures by Linda http://linaway.wordpress.com . You may find the Virtual Photographer plug-in useful.
    I have some resources that you may find useful on my media literacy blog. http://darkpinesmedia.wordpress.com/category/photography/

    Keep up the good work!

  2. What I think is, that’s a real super pic! :)

  3. 3 weberc2

    Thanks guys, I really appreciate the feedback. @elmediat: Yes, lighting is something I need to work on as I’ve really never paid much attention to lighting on a conscious level before I started photography. I have much to learn. Also, I opened both links you posted and will look into them in more depth tomorrow. For now, I am going to sleep. Thanks again. :)

    @fotdmike: thanks for the compliment and I checked out your blog a little as well, and I’ll read a little more tomorrow.

    Have a good night guys. I guess I’m assuming you’re both male. Rephrased: have a good night, humans.


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