Sunday, May 20, 2012
Saturday, April 28, 2012
The original shot in its unedited form is:
I needed a dark background for the running water to contrast against, there was a facecloth nearby so I used that. The settings used were:
Shutter speed 15s
Focal length 75mm
Focus mode Manual
AF Area mode Single
Shutter actuation Remote
Let me know what you think, or if you have any ideas or tips on how I can improve, thanks.
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Friday, April 6, 2012
So first shots? This weekend is the 158th Oxford-Cambridge boatrace, #theboatrace so I headed down to the river this afternoon as it's on my doorstep. First impressions, this camera feels really solid, good to hold and controls fall easy to hand. I took the following pics.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
For me, the only camera that came anywhere close to what I'm looking for is the Nikon D7000. Everything about this camera screams "there can only be one!" For a beginner with aspirations to be a serious hobbyist slash enthusiast, it has enough user friendliness coupled with enough advanced features to allow advancement at a steady pace. Don't get me wrong, this camera will be far more capable than me for at least the first year and maybe more, and that's the point, if I am going to invest in a proper camera, I do not want to have to upgrade a year or two later. The Nikon D7000 has so much going for it, compared to the others I looked at, the D5100, the Canons,the Pentax and the Sonys, that I just kept coming back to it.
I spent weeks watching You Tube videos (check out www.digitalreviewtv.com and www.artoftheimage.com), read countless articles online (www.snapsort.com is amazing) and even went into a few stores to check out some models. Listening to and reading the reviews and there are plenty all pointed to the D7000. A few key features.
16.2 megapixels, Expeed2 processor, dual memory card slots, ISO from 100 to 25600, burst rate of 6 frames per second, magnesium alloy body (vs plastic of all others), all weather proofing sealed, autofocus motor, 39 focus points, 1080HP movie, 30 second to 1/8000th of a second shutter speeds, shutter tested to 150,000 actuations, dust cleaning CMOS sensor, multiple scene modes, kit lens 15-105mm Nikkor build, live view through the lens, pentaprism, 100% viewfinder image (wysiwyg) and to cap it off the price off all this amazing technology for £1000.
This is a serious bit of kit. The key for me was spending a lot of time taking pictures with my little CoolPix and my Android phone, the joy and fun of taking pictures was what mattered, not the kit. Discovering an inner creative side, the peace and calm of just wandering around eyes wide open and discovering new and interesting things, or discovering really dull and boring things, the art of discovering and framing and composing has awakened something within and is very welcome.
Oh, and the CoolPix and Android are always at the ready. Next post, all going according to plan, an order will be placed and delivery taken a week later, watch this space.
Monday, March 19, 2012
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Last post, I outlined I would be entering the world of digital photography, first by exploring what could be achieved with my Nikon CoolPix S3000, a basic point and click (p&c) before graduating to a digital SLR. By reading and learning the basics of photography from YouTube videos, googled articles and a couple of books from Waterstones, I will attempt to document the process, list my successes, my failures and what I've learned along the way.
So first stop was Waterstones, a browse through the photography section and whoa, information overload! So where to begin? I spotted this book, "Digital Photography - A Basic Manual" by Harry Horenstein, a guy who has been taking photos since the 70s and is a professor of photography at RISD in the States.
This book covers a heck of a lot and starts the reader off from a beginner level and moves on swiftly through to more advanced topics. This book did not bamboozle or tech overload me one bit, the writing is easy, the concepts well explained and photo images are great examples of what can be achieved with practice. A valuable read. I even showed to a work colleague who also has a passion for photography and she was impressed.
First up, what is digital photography? Light enters a sealed box through an opening, passes through a lens and is focused onto a sensor which converts that light into an electronic signal which in turn gets processed into an image. That's all there is to it. This whole process is called 'capture'. And capture is what this blog is all about, the how, the why, the oh no and the oh yes!
So, next I needed to find out what goes into capturing an image? There are 3 basic elements, namely Aperture, Shutter speed and ISO. The aperture refers to the size of the hole or opening through which the light comes into the camera, the shutter speed determines the length of time the light is allowed to fall onto the sensor and finally the ISO refers to the sensitivity of the sensor to the light falling on it. These 3 elements (volume of light, duration of light and sensitivity of the sensor to that light) when combined as intended, are what make us pause, reflect and gasp at the world.
Our own style of photography comes through manipulating the tools at our disposal and coupled with artistic vision, thoughtful composition, message and subject, our images get created. And the beauty is we can always return to that moment. It's past and present. Cool bananas huh? Next time, I will look at the 3 basics,
Sunday, March 11, 2012
So my wife suggested, instead of agonizing over what camera to buy etc, why not take the point and click (p&c) and see what I could achieve with it. The principles are the same although the equipment may be shall we say, agricultural compared to the more modern DSLRs available. This way, I can learn and apply the principles and have some fun along the way. Once mastered (within reason), moving up to a DSLR will be a welcome challenge. A bit like putting in time before moving up to the next level. It also avoids the whole mine field of spending gobs of money on expensive equipment only for it to end up on a shelf or even worse, used as a p&c.
So I went online and downloaded the Coolpix operating manual to see how and what could be achieved and together with lots of reading on ISOs, shutter speeds and apertures, I dove right in.
Over the next few months, I will be documenting what principles of photography I've learned and how i've applied them to using my p&c. The next step will be to go through my decision making process in choosing my first digital SLR. Should be fun. Next post, "The Basics".