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Old 23-09-2009, 22:46   #1 (permalink)
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What is more important....

Hi... I'm fairly new to DSLR and I have been lurking on Pixalo for almost a year now... The reality is that I still don't know the difference between f-stop and door-stop... Well not quite that bad, but... I was wondering what you think is more important for someone just starting out: learn all of the technical aspects of photography and the DSLR camera or spend time learning how to manipulate photographs on programs like PhotoShop? I have talked to many good photographers and they have worked for 20 or more years learning their craft and they tell me that they learned all of the technical aspects first and they feel that I should do the same... What is your opinion?
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Old 23-09-2009, 22:51   #2 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

learn in camera, a basic knowledge of photoshop is great and enough to get by if you take half decent photos.... photoshop and suchlike cant make the photo, that is left to you knowing your camera a little bit and also settings needed...
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Old 23-09-2009, 22:59   #3 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

If you cannot capture a good image then you will not need photoshop. Learn how to use your camera first.

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Old 24-09-2009, 00:40   #4 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Paul, I agree with Dave. I bought a 40D a little over a year ago and it's still slow going but I'm getting there. There are several good instructional DVD's on the net (Google them) and ebay that have been very helpful. Also a lot of free stuff on Youtube. Just do a search for your camera like this "Canon 40D DVD" but use your camera make. The DVD's I bought on ebay ran from $10 - $25.

And the most given advice is to get out there and shoot, shoot, shoot.
Good luck.
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Old 24-09-2009, 09:12   #5 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Learn how to compose a picture first which'll get you wondering how you can improve/produce a different image (and so learn the technical aspects of the kit a step at a time) which will in turn get you wondering how to tweak the final result (i.e. Photoshop)

I know someone who produces brilliant shots, to the extent that she's doing a book, without any knowledge of the bridge camera she uses or how Photoshop works. I've also seen far too many who've an obvious understanding of the gear and Photoshop, and so the images look OK, but haven't a clue about how to compose a photograph

As has been said, take photos (lots of them), post them here (but also compare them with how others are taking the shots by looking at others' pics), ask for criticism and (most important) use the feedback to take lots more photos. And most important of all, enjoy your photography!
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Old 24-09-2009, 09:51   #6 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Go out and practice taking pictures! Photoshop is easy compared to this! I still practice every time I go out with my camera be it a DSLR or a compact, its all part of the fun.
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Old 24-09-2009, 11:18   #7 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Take pictures, lots of them, then take some more. The more you do it the better you will get.
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Old 24-09-2009, 13:17   #8 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Bagshawe View Post
Take pictures, lots of them, then take some more. The more you do it the better you will get.
I like this quote, I have to go out and shoot some more pictures.
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Old 24-09-2009, 13:45   #9 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Quote:
Originally Posted by paulstan View Post
The reality is that I still don't know the difference between f-stop and door-stop...
Nice!

Many people vehemently warn against the dangers of getting too obsessed with the technical aspects of photography, and forgetting what you're trying to achieve in an image, thus making your pictures all appear like exercises in technical ability. Perhaps this has some truth to it. From my point of view, though, I would not be able to / can not achieve the results I want without all the technical knowledge required to achieve them; I could not reproduce the idea I had in my head if I didn't have the first idea how to go about taking the shot technically. Lots of 'photographers' get by because their images are 'quirky' and their ideas are 'different' (and don't get me wrong, sometimes also good), but there is no denying that a lot of their photos either look like pot luck, or like they haven't got the first idea what they're doing. People argue that doesn't matter because the image is still very striking, but it leaves us to ask the question: how much better could the image have been, had the user been able to apply all that technical knowledge that they don't have - without thinking - before they took the shot? And that is the key to my ramble. Without thinking. Ideally, I think one wants to get to a stage whereby shots aren't planned around the technical elements, but the technical elements are simply included because the photographer inherently knows them, and can therefore employ them at any given moment without any additional procrastination. Many professionals / experience photographers seem to forget this when advising recent starters to lay off the technicalities; they know their gear intrinsically, to a level that they don't even realise, thus giving them the illusion of a lack of technical consideration.

Thank you for listening, I'm here all week
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Old 24-09-2009, 17:55   #10 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Quote:
Originally Posted by paulstan View Post
Hi... ... I was wondering what you think is more important
This thread has captured my attention, I would say if you plan on an income from your pictures,,learn your camera very well. I would also ask yourself, what is it that I love about photography and how do I make that part better.
Some people are very good with their cameras only because they have found a great deal of pleasure from certain forms of photography.
I will reveal my first deep feeling and motivation was the first pictures I took with a very shallow depth of field and the resulting colors. I never turned back and was hooked, one step at a time I learn and search for another venture to practice.
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Old 24-09-2009, 20:50   #11 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Thanks for all the replies.... I think that I now have some direction... My problem is that before two years ago I didn't even own a camera.... My first purchase was a FujiFilm 3.2mp P & S camera and PhotoShop Elements. The first photos that I took were macros of flowers and i did some post processing in Elements...
People really liked my work and encouraged me to continue... Well two years later, my work is displayed in four galleries of fine art and a local winary. Recently, some professional photographers suggested that i needed to purchase some better equipment... So I bought a Canon 40D, a 100mm macro lens, a macro flash, and cf tripod that i am beginning to learn how to use. I am now in a position where I am starting to teach classes... That's why i asked the original question about what is more important the technical aspects of photography and the camera or learning post processing. Sorry for the long post and thanks for the help...
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Old 25-09-2009, 02:05   #12 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

It's interesting about how people will have an eye for certain types of work. I stopped two years ago showing to much of certain pictures because I didn't want the attention, but I learned something different from this site. All young people that I have shown my infrared pictures to even on the camera all just love them with the false colors that I normally have before processing, much more then the color ones. On this site they are very conservative about those colors and like the more monochromatic tones. It really is none stop requests for prints with the infrared, I am very good to shy away from to much work. But that said I enjoy the light tones of color I leave in a picture so I haven't stopped posting pictures here. I wish you luck as I find more young folks will surprise you with what they like over what they have to learn. In this world free thinkers might never say a word to keep a job.
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Old 26-09-2009, 09:28   #13 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Quote:
Originally Posted by paulstan View Post
Hi... learn all of the technical aspects of photography and the DSLR camera or spend time learning how to manipulate photographs on programs like PhotoShop?

Do both

Yes, getting it right "In the camera" is important.... very important... and as I am on the same road of you, getting to know what all the buttons do and when to use them is often a daunting task... I admit freely that my camera, a modest Canon 350D, at some points knows better than me.... I adopted the shoot-first-in-Auto, read the EXIF data, then go for a manual shot dependant on what it says, to get a better shot in manual modes, and I have to say, you do learn an awful lot that way.... I now know where to start in some shots from experience like that, and I also know getting it wrong teaches you more than getting it right... I read more EXIF data of duff shots than I do of good ones.
Having access to this forum is teaching me a lot as well.

But...

Photoshop...(Or PhotoPlus, the Gimp, etc..)
You can often rescue a photograph, or get creative, in a photo editor, in my opinion, knowing where all the buttons are in that is also important... I have a shot in my gallery of some train controls in sepia that when I took it was quite boring, cropped, converted to sepia, and a few adjustments to levels gave me something quite interesting... none of which I could have done "In Camera", as to be quite honest, apart from the sepia and zoom, I wouldnt know how to alter the levels "In Camera" to get that shot... not only that, it was a train with steam up, and I wouldnt have had the time, as two mins later, it had left the station....

To me, "In Camera" and "In Editor", are two very different tools.
Knowing what you can do with both of them is the knowledge that makes digital photography so interesting...
I know when I look at a shot what I can do "In Editor", I can see what will look interesting in black and white, for instance, but I cant do that in my camera, so I take the shot knowing it will need editing to get what I wanted...
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Old 26-09-2009, 12:09   #14 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Dragon View Post
Do both

Yes, getting it right "In the camera" is important.... very important... and as I am on the same road of you, getting to know what all the buttons do and when to use them is often a daunting task... I admit freely that my camera, a modest Canon 350D, at some points knows better than me.... I adopted the shoot-first-in-Auto, read the EXIF data, then go for a manual shot dependant on what it says, to get a better shot in manual modes, and I have to say, you do learn an awful lot that way.... I now know where to start in some shots from experience like that, and I also know getting it wrong teaches you more than getting it right... I read more EXIF data of duff shots than I do of good ones.
Having access to this forum is teaching me a lot as well.

But...

Photoshop...(Or PhotoPlus, the Gimp, etc..)
You can often rescue a photograph, or get creative, in a photo editor, in my opinion, knowing where all the buttons are in that is also important... I have a shot in my gallery of some train controls in sepia that when I took it was quite boring, cropped, converted to sepia, and a few adjustments to levels gave me something quite interesting... none of which I could have done "In Camera", as to be quite honest, apart from the sepia and zoom, I wouldnt know how to alter the levels "In Camera" to get that shot... not only that, it was a train with steam up, and I wouldnt have had the time, as two mins later, it had left the station....

To me, "In Camera" and "In Editor", are two very different tools.
Knowing what you can do with both of them is the knowledge that makes digital photography so interesting...
I know when I look at a shot what I can do "In Editor", I can see what will look interesting in black and white, for instance, but I cant do that in my camera, so I take the shot knowing it will need editing to get what I wanted...
Silver Dragon.... I appreciate your comments... Very well stated... Thanks!
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Old 26-09-2009, 14:47   #15 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

do both........... im sure many years ago, the great photogrpahers of old didint just stop once they had taken the picture, there were no 1 hour processing shops to get their plates/ film/ slides/ whatever turned into images, they then had to go back and learn how to take what they had on the medium they were using and transform it into an image......... photography hasnt changed that much. So you learn how to produce in the camera the image you see, then you go home and learn how to make it the image you want!
remember tho as has been said before, you cannot make the image you want from a bad image, you have to have a good image to work with first!
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Old 26-09-2009, 18:10   #16 (permalink)
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Re: What is more important....

If the worst comes to the worst and you still struggle then join a Photography Club!
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