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Spicy Dumpling
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not to bore you guys with more photo questions but I'm like a gutfiddle with a new gun.

Ok, I've got the nice camera to please the techie in me but my photos suck to say the least. I'm looking for some suggestions on books to help with composition. I'm already planning on getting Petersons Understanding Exposure but I need something to help with my composition and just plain spotting something good to shoot..

I went out this weekend and took over 100 pictures. My wife took 20. She had more good photos than I did. It wasn't exposure but composition and spotting something interesting to shoot. I'm an engineer and she's an artist. It shows.
 

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had it in the ear before
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13,965 Posts
sometimes it's not the camera settings, anyone can buy a nice camera and like that etc....

I wish i had a new gun!

poast pixxors of your wife.
 

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still shedding season
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8,849 Posts
This one's pretty good, but it's a hard thing to write and read about. Like I'm any kind of expert...

One thing you may want to think about is getting a little more comfortable with the mechanics of how it all works, and then go to a short workshop. Not sure if any of these locations are near you, but I went to it several years ago and got a lot out of it.
 

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Stumpcake!
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5,950 Posts
VaughnA said:
Not to bore you guys with more photo questions but I'm like a gutfiddle with a new gun.

Ok, I've got the nice camera to please the techie in me but my photos suck to say the least. I'm looking for some suggestions on books to help with composition. I'm already planning on getting Petersons Understanding Exposure but I need something to help with my composition and just plain spotting something good to shoot..

I went out this weekend and took over 100 pictures. My wife took 20. She had more good photos than I did. It wasn't exposure but composition and spotting something interesting to shoot. I'm an engineer and she's an artist. It shows.
I know Roebuck has mentioned some books before and I'd love for him to mention them again.

Mrs Tcon and I took a continuing education photography class. It was cheap and gave Mrs Tcon a look at the basic concepts. It also gives you class time with other people and learning from their questions which is a big help. I like the part where I could hit the instructor up after class and ask him advanced stuff with things I wondered about. I think we paid a whopping 60 bucks each.
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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22,021 Posts
http://www.amazon.com/Learning-See-Creatively-Composition-Photography/dp/0817441816/ref=pd_bbs_5?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1235414616&sr=8-5http://www.newegg.com/Store/Category.aspx?Category=15&name=Hard-Drives

Another Peterson book that's pretty good at getting you to see differently...if you do the drills.

Here is the thing though..........The more you shoot, the more you see. You have to train yourself to notice things. You have to slow down. You have to be "Intentional". You have to experiment.

I am very busy...so recently, I have not gotten out much to shoot. I know that next time I go out, I will not have very many pictures that I want to keep. OTOH, I went to Europe for 2 weeks last summer.......by the end of the 4th day or so, I was noticing everything....I had "sensitized" my self to see photographly. My Images showed it.

It's a learned and practiced skill.

The nice thing about Digital is that the cost of experimenting is so low.

Len
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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22,021 Posts
tconrady said:
I know Roebuck has mentioned some books before and I'd love for him to mention them again.

Mrs Tcon and I took a continuing education photography class. It was cheap and gave Mrs Tcon a look at the basic concepts. It also gives you class time with other people and learning from their questions which is a big help. I like the part where I could hit the instructor up after class and ask him advanced stuff with things I wondered about. I think we paid a whopping 60 bucks each.
One week a month our Photography club does a critique night. People bring 5 or so digital images and they are put up on the wall & the entire club critiques them....it's amazing the little things I learn by looking at other peoples composition (good or bad) & listening to others comments that I'd never see in my own.

Len
 

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Spicy Dumpling
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Len J said:
You have to slow down. You have to be "Intentional".

Len
I think that is a big part of it. When I gave the camera to my wife, I just stood around and took in everything around me while she walked around and shot. I saw a lot of stuff that I would have missed and got a couple of good shots after getting the camera back. But I rarely slow down to look at anything. As my wife says "You are not a patient soul".
 

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Ya, ya I know....
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33 Posts
You could spend some time on the Critique Fourm at Photography Review.

I learn much more by critquing other folks photos as I do looking at mine.

BTW why don't you just set your camera on full auto for now and just concentrate on composition?
 

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Spicy Dumpling
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
MB1's Sock Puppet said:
You could spend some time on the Critique Fourm at Photography Review.

I learn much more by critquing other folks photos as I do looking at mine.

BTW why don't you just set your camera on full auto for now and just concentrate on composition?
Thanks for the tips. I'm basically running auto or aperture priority all the time. I seem to do pretty good with exposure. I just have crappy well exposed pictures. I'll go take a look and try to slow down and learn.

Also, what is your recommendation for carrying a SLR on a bike trip. We're doing Bike Va this year and I'd like to take this camera along. Lumbar or Handlebar? Brand or type?
 

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Ya, ya I know....
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33 Posts
VaughnA said:
....Also, what is your recommendation for carrying a SLR on a bike trip. We're doing Bike Va this year and I'd like to take this camera along. Lumbar or Handlebar? Brand or type?
Take a point-n-shoot. No reason to risk your good camera on a bike trip.

Otherwise go for a handlebar bag and make sure there is some extra padding in there.
 

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Sticky Valentine
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Bike Rider
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Try to start using manual exposures for the most control over your photos. With digital photography, you can see instantly what you need to do.
Digital SLR and a lens or two on a bike? Backpack is the only way to go.
 

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Spicy Dumpling
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9,721 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
JoeDaddio said:
A while back Roebuck suggested a book called The Photographers Eye.

I bought it and it really is fantastic. It's more about how to see things, how the eye works, why it works... it's almost a kind of philosophical look at photography. I highly suggest it.

http://www.google.com/products/cata...8&cid=7344311402041541540&sa=title#ps-sellers


joe
That one was at the top of my list and is already in my amazon cart. I looked at it yesterday at the local B&N and it looked pretty good. Time to order.
 

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Bike Rider
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238 Posts
But I rarely slow down to look at anything.
A common saying among photographers is that "people look, but they don't see"

Anything a beginning photographer might need to know is available on the many photography websites on the internet.

Photography is not about cameras, it's about light.
 

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Bacon!
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Inching to 1000 (again)
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OK. Here’s what you do to take better pictures.

1. Find your subject
2. Compose the shot
3. Take three steps closer
4. Trip the shutter

I guarantee your photos will be much better. Most people include too much extraneous stuff on the periphery, which doesn’t strengthen the image.

OK. Here’s another free tip. Shoot even more next time. Select you 4 or five faves and keep posting them here for critiques. There no substitution for practice.
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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Ridgetop said:
I've kind of looked over this site. You might enjoy it. www.kenrockwell.com
Ken Rockwell is a joke........he even indicates on his site that most of what he posts is to genreate laughs.

Take his site with a large grain of salt.

Len
 

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Spicy Dumpling
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Len J said:
Ken Rockwell is a joke........he even indicates on his site that most of what he posts is to genreate laughs.

Take his site with a large grain of salt.

Len
I did know that much. It seems like he's universally despised. I'm ordering the book that Joe suggested and slow down. That should keep me for a while. Thanks for the help everyone.
 

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Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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27,036 Posts
tconrady said:
I know Roebuck has mentioned some books before and I'd love for him to mention them again.
See below:

JoeDaddio said:
A while back Roebuck suggested a book called The Photographers Eye.

I bought it and it really is fantastic. It's more about how to see things, how the eye works, why it works... it's almost a kind of philosophical look at photography. I highly suggest it.

http://www.google.com/products/cata...8&cid=7344311402041541540&sa=title#ps-sellers
Btw, Joeh, glad you liked the book.
 

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Frog Whisperer
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40,922 Posts
IMO....a good composition draws your eyes to the center of the frame....That does NOT mean the subject needs to be centered. for example, if you have a person on the right, facing the left then there needs to some other "action" to draw your eyes back from the left to the center. personally I like to work with strong diagonals.
 
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