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Old Mar 30, 2006, 1:20 AM   #1
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ok new to all of this world! bare with me please!:?

First of all SO many of you are brilliant. just brilliant. you are pro's & i admire all your knowledge. That being said where does a newbie begin???

i hv a panasonic fz7 currently & want to learn how to use it so my photos have a better chance of being their best. i have taken some shots of my daughter that were all posed & all came out wonderful. i had it on "simple" mode.

i know it comes down to learning my camera, i get that. but what i dont get is HOW to learn it all. Where do i start so i can understand iso numbers, what RAW means, how to shrink my photos so they can be emailed w/o loosing quality? if i take the sd card to my local Ritz & have my photos put onto a cd is that adequate for preservation? can this be like teh negs are for my dinosaur film camera? if i store them in my computer how to i know how much space they're taking up? again how do i shrink for emailing & space saving purposes w/o messing photo up?

furthermore how does a beginner coming from a world of drop in the role of film & then take to developer get into all of this? and post processing????? how do i begin to just learn basic things i can do? i have a free download of paint shop pro but heck i cant wk any part of it.

where/how do i start? i got the camera & high speed card & am ready to shoot but am afraid to put any more photos in my computer until i know i am not taking up tons of space. what does everyone mean when they "crop" their photos??

Help me! pretty please:>
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 1:29 AM   #2
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here is a photo of my child. i could barly get it sized down to attach it here.

what are bytes anyway???
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 2:40 AM   #3
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Hi, Tink, and welcome.

I think the best way to go about it, is to concentrate on one question at a time, and then take some time going over the replies, and apply the new info. Attempting to learn everything at once is a pretty good way to get confused and frustrated.

I seem to be able to see only the top of someone's head in your picture. Don't know if it is you or the forum software that is not quite right, as I had some difficulty posting a pic earlier myself. There is a good topic called "how to post pictures', which has just about all the info you should need. Partly, it depends on what program you use to edit your pics. I recommend using the 'Resize' command first, and size your photo to around 900 pixels or less in width, then use the 'save as' command to save in a compression level that meets the site requirements.

brian
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Old Mar 30, 2006, 3:31 AM   #4
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You have lots of questions here, and some are as basic as learning about computers, which is beyond this forum, but I'll try to answer what I can...


Where do i start so i can understand iso numbers
--> ISO numbers are derived from film era. Basically it's the sensitivity setting of the sensor. The higher the number the more sensitive it is, meaning it can record in an environment with less light (like at night, or in-doors with poor lighting). The higher the ISO though brings "noise" to the image.


what RAW means
--> I suggest you stay away from this at this point. RAW is just the "raw" data from your camera's sensor, as supposed to the standard jpeg file. RAW gives more advance way of manipulating your image since no data were lost when it was converted to jpeg.


how to shrink my photos so they can be emailed w/o loosing quality?
--> In general, you will lose quality whenever you shrink an image. Data will be lost, and cannot be recover. This is not necessarily a bad thing. If you will just keep the images on your computer, or if you won't print large prints, you don't need a large image files.


if i take the sd card to my local Ritz & have my photos put onto a cd is that adequate for preservation?
can this be like teh negs are for my dinosaur film camera?

--> Yes and No. If you have a CD burner on your PC it would be cheaper. CDs today are made to be cheap. More likely it will degrade after a couple of years, depending on the quality of the CD. The best quality ones will probably last no more than 5 years. You will know they degraded when you try to read them and your computer can't read them. I suggest making copies in your computer as well. And if you have more than one hard drive, even better. And if you have yahoo or gmail accounts, email the ones you really want to save to your account.


if i store them in my computer how to i know how much space they're taking up?
--> Each files in your computer has a size, if you have a folder full of pictures, right-click that folder and choose "Properties" on the menu that pops up, it will show the size of that folder as well as the number of files in that folder. Pictures will take up lots of space, it's the cheap price we pay for not spending money on film.


again how do i shrink for emailing & space saving purposes w/o messing photo up?
--> See above. You can also try uploading your pictures to servers, and have your friends or family get it from there. I use ImageShack to share my pictures:
http://imageshack.us/


furthermore how does a beginner coming from a world of drop in the role of film & then take to developer get into all of this? and post processing????? how do i begin to just learn basic things i can do? i have a free download of paint shop pro but heck i cant wk any part of it. where/how do i start? i got the camera & high speed card & am ready to shoot but am afraid to put any more photos in my computer until i know i am not taking up tons of space.
--> Paint Shop Pro should have help files for the features. Also you can search online for tutorial. Try google.com for searches.


what does everyone mean when they "crop" their photos??
--> Crop is when you cut or trim a portion of an image from a complete image.


what are bytes anyway???
--> A byte is a unit of measure used in digital storage. Digital data are nothing more than strings of 1's and 0's. A group of eight of these ones and zeroes is a byte, just like a group of twelve is commonly known as a "dozen" in English.

--> A letter, for example, take up one byte. So if you have a text file in your computer with only one letter in it, then the size of that file is one byte. If you have a file with 100 letters, it would then take up 100 bytes, ie. one byter per letter. (It's actually more than that, but I won't get into that.)

--> Images are stored in strings of 1's and 0's, and hence, they have sizes expressed in bytes as well.

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Old Mar 30, 2006, 3:55 AM   #5
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First of all, I admire you for recognizing your need and not blaming your equipment.
I'd suggest a couple of things. 1. get some beginners' books (Photography for Dummies, etc.) and go through them slowly to get some basic information on photographic concepts, terminology, etc. The same information is available for free in many places on the web, so you might try googling for words like beginner, tutorial, photography, and so on.

2. If you look around your community, you'll probably be able to find a beginner's digital photography course at a community college or hosted privately. That would be a place to meet other beginners and have some hands-on training.


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Old Mar 30, 2006, 7:35 AM   #6
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hey mte good to hear you are keen to learn to ropes

i think rey has covered all your questions with excellent detail

dont be shy to ask anything else, i too own a pana, but fz30 though, but i think they use a very similar menu system

there is also a panasonic forum as part of this website which is devoted to pana discussion. im sure plenty of users in ther will also be fx7 users who can help out



all the best. all i can really add on is just play around withthe cam with any spare moments you get. take the same shot using diff iso levels, modes etc so you yourself is able to grasp a practical understanding of wat ppl say online here.

all the best

ken


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Old Mar 30, 2006, 10:43 AM   #7
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Here's one more source of photography tutorials I found about today: Cambridge in Color


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Old Mar 30, 2006, 12:25 PM   #8
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Phew, thats a load of questions!

The photography part of it hasent changed, a photography book from the 1950's would still apply (camera settings, shutter, aperture, film (iso) speed, composition). Classes are availible, but there arent too many web tutorials that I've found. Digital cameras have changed the film into a fancy high-tech sensor, but the cameras havent really changed much in principal or operation.

Your camera manual will help you work the buttons and menus specific to your hardware.

The computer side of things isn't too hard, but I don't know where to start! Always save your original pictures, and make backups (like on a cd). From there, you'll dive into photo editors (photoshop, picasa, paint shop pro) some are free, some cost around a hundred bucks. They let you "tweak" your pictues, resize, crop, brighten, and so on. For sharing pictures online, I've found the photo-sharing websites to be much more convienent than email. Again, some are free and some charge. I use pbase which costs twenty some dollars a year, but presents your pictures in a very nice and useful way. Most of these sites will resize pictures for you, so you dont need to do any editing of your own. There are books for photoshop, which might be a good place to start.

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Old Mar 30, 2006, 8:03 PM   #9
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I think this is the best site to learn the basics of photography!!

http://www.canon.co.jp/Imaging/enjoydslr/p_2_001.html
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Old Mar 31, 2006, 12:51 PM   #10
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thank you boily, that url you posted was very helpful!
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