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Old Mar 30, 2007, 4:57 PM   #1
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Having moved up to a DSLR, I need help in understanding this level of photography and would like to read more about it.

Thank you

Rod
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Old Mar 30, 2007, 6:22 PM   #2
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One that I recommend a lot is "Understanding Exposure" revised edition by Bryan Peterson.
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Old Mar 30, 2007, 7:17 PM   #3
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Caboose wrote:
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One that I recommend a lot is "Understanding Exposure" revised edition by Bryan Peterson.
That's the right book to have a good foundation to control the camera, the robot. I wish I had that book when I first started this hobby. I learned the hard way in the trash can.... One day I stopped by at a nearest photolab and asked the lab technician for the empty film boxes inthe trash can, I collected all the ISO range each has a small picture of the sun f.16, the cloud... in the shade, at the beach...ect. At home I wrote down all the numbers along with the pictures on a piece of paper and memorized them like a grade school kid learning the time table.:-)
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Old Mar 30, 2007, 7:42 PM   #4
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The most important book is your camera's manual. You should know what all of the dials, menues, bells, wistles, ... do. Figuring that out will lead to knowing about f/stops, ISOs, shutter speed, depth of field, focal length, ...

IMHO the next most important issue is figuring out where and when to stand for the shot, i.e., composition and lighting. By looking at books of photographs with the question "How did they do that?" you will learn a lot. Doesn't matter if the book refers to digital or chemical photography. Spend some time in your local art galleries if you can - doesn't matter if the show is photography or painting.
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Old Mar 31, 2007, 3:31 AM   #5
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I give a ringing endorsement of "Understanding Exposure", also.
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Old Mar 31, 2007, 9:02 AM   #6
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BillDrew wrote:
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The most important book is your camera's manual. You should know what all of the dials, menues, bells, wistles, ... do. Figuring that out will lead to knowing about f/stops, ISOs, shutter speed, depth of field, focal length, ...
Bill - I guess I disagree on this. I think the 'WHY' is more important. Manuals don't do a great job of explaining why and in what conditions to use those controls. If you understand the principles of photography, 15 minutes with the manual or camera will show you how to access the features you need. And as you said, composition is critical - the manual can't help you there.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"If you want to be a writer, you don't learn to do so by reading a manual on Microsoft Word. IMO, same is true in photography. Beyond the initial step of 'how do I operate the thing' I think someone will get much more benefit out of reading books that speak to photographic principles and simply use the manual as the reference on how to access those features. Just like a writer might consult manual or help text on how to use a feature in microsoft Word.
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Old Mar 31, 2007, 11:42 AM   #7
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JohnG wrote:
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Bill - I guess I disagree on this. I think the 'WHY' is more important. Manuals don't do a great job of explaining why and in what conditions to use those controls. If you understand the principles of photography, 15 minutes with the manual or camera will show you how to access the features you need. And as you said, composition is critical - the manual can't help you there.
I don't think we disagree very much about what is more important, but perhaps about how to figure it out. I advocate a hands-on, try, look at the results, try again, approach. Although reading is helpfull, nothing substitutes for getting out and trying things while thinking about what you are doing. Thinking about how to deal with the knobs, buttons, and menues on the camera just gets in the way of thinking about the photo. That is why I consider the manual the most important book - get that learning out of the way early.


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Old Mar 31, 2007, 4:24 PM   #8
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BillDrew wrote:
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I don't think we disagree very much about what is more important, but perhaps about how to figure it out.
True enough! Different people learn in different ways. Always helps to have multiple choices / selections on approach to best match what works for you.
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Old Apr 2, 2007, 10:06 AM   #9
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I wanted to suggest another book I've found quite good:
The Art of Photographing Nature (Paperback) [/b]
by Martha Hill (Author), Art Wolfe (Photographer)
http://www.amazon.com/Art-Photograph...221&sr=1-3

Martha was the editor for National Audubon's magazine. Art Wolfe is a great wildlife/nature photographer. The book is a collection of photos (some times just for the photos sake, other times with a specific situation in mind) and comments from both of them. What they like and dislike. What Art was thinking of when he took it.

It covers things all kinds of different aspects of making the photo. From how a different lens choice lets him get something different to how the colors or dark and light areas of the image make a different. I found it very educational.

Eric
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Old Apr 2, 2007, 7:42 PM   #10
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BillDrew wrote:
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The most important book is your camera's manual. You should know what all of the dials, menues, bells, wistles, ... do. Figuring that out will lead to knowing about f/stops, ISOs, shutter speed, depth of field, focal length
Got to agree with Bill on this one. R.T.F.M. If you don't know how to operate the equipment, all the books in the world will not help. Kind of like wanting to be a NASCAR driver but not knowing how to operate a manual transmission. If you RTFM and understand the basics of the camera we will not be seeing posts like, "How do I change shutter speed?" or "What does the AV mean on the dial?"

Understanding exposure is an excellent book to have in your library. However I would also suggest the public library. They will have a wide array of books on almost any area of photography that you might be interested in. Take a look there. If you find one that is totally invaluable, then you can see about ordering a copy for yourself. It's easy, it's cheap and it is full of information.

Good luck and have fun with that camera.
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