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Old Jul 31, 2006, 8:03 AM   #1
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Getting ready to jump into dslr photography and would like to subscribe to a magazine to help with my continuing education!:-) I would like to know what others here read and what they would suggest.

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Old Jul 31, 2006, 9:36 AM   #2
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In general I find forums to be much more helpful than most photography magazines. I have subscribed to several: Popular Photography, Outdoor Photographer, PC Photo. Outdoor Photo was probably the most useful but I've even let that subscription cease. The problem is this: all these magazines make the majority of their money from advertising, not subscriptions. So, a good 50% of the magazine is nothing but advertisements. Second, IMO, when the magazines do gear reviews, the reviews are invariably very positive - yes they'll indicate a couple of knocks - especially on price. But, the overall tone is that every product released is the greatest lens, camera body, whatever. I'm sure that has a lot to do with them gaining the majority of their revenue from advertisement dollars. So, I found the internet and forums to be a much better instructor with regards to gear performance than magazines. Yes you have to be careful who you listen to - but you do get a variety of opinions this way. And, you can almost always get a 'how to' question answered in a couple days on line. While the magazines offer some 'how to' articles it is often a craps shoot as to whether or not it's something you're interested in doing. In the end I was finding something interesting in about 1 out of every 4 or 5 editions.

My advice is: if you have a Borders, Barnes & Noble or other bookstore that has a variety of periodicals and allows you to read them - go there for a couple months and look through what the magazines have to offer. Then you can decide on which one(s) to subscribe to, if any.
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Old Jul 31, 2006, 3:54 PM   #3
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I use online as well. I learned a lot from the folks in this forum. In addition, I'm a bookstore rat. I hangout at bookstore a lot and usually read photog magazines and books, without buying them. Of course I have a friend who works for Barnes and Noble so I get drinks for half off, and I get free wireless connection as well.

My advice is to checkout online resources first. Most mags these days are full of ads. If you're in the US, there are very few mags worth subscribing to. Most helpful mags I've seen are published in the UK, and cost $8 each at the bookstore. THat's the main reason I don't buy them.

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Old Jul 31, 2006, 8:57 PM   #4
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Thanks so much for the advice. I don't want useless paper to pile up around the house. Too much of that already:? I'll just hang out around here and learn from you guys!

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Old Jul 31, 2006, 10:31 PM   #5
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I agree for the most part. I enjoy Shutterbug magazine though. It is well done.Outdoor Photographer as well.

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Old Aug 1, 2006, 5:19 AM   #6
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I agree with the others here on this topic. When I first got into photography I like you wanted to get the magazines to learn and did not listen to the advice about the magazines. I have since dumped my subscriptions and rely on forums such as this. I get more real world advice. As suggested you can always go to your local bookstore or library and scan through the magazines.
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Old Aug 6, 2006, 1:12 PM   #7
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Hi Tolpuppy,

I am in league with the others here that the formums are the quickest, most direct way of getting your questions answered about nearly anything. This particular forum has been my personal favorite as the people here are enthusiastic about photography and willing to help on any level in any subject.

I would like to add just one other possible resource - the public library. I havebeen visitingthe local libraries and found very useful & valuable information in the the excellent booksoffered through the library and allfor free! I love being able to mull over information and seeing examples of work done by the pros. Jim Zukerman (wildlife and nature photographer) has several excellent books for photographers that I found in our library. There are also, books on digital effects for those who like post processing, and of course beginner books for the newbies in photography or the basics of SLR & DSLR. I even found a book on how to get set up in a private business as a photographer and if I should be so lucky, how to market my work.

When I'm done, I can return them. No adds, not paper collection, no money exchange (unless I'm overdue :-)).

Good luck,


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