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Old Feb 10, 2007, 2:46 PM   #1
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Hello all,

Well, my first ever dslr, a D40, is about two weeks old, and I was frankly starting to get quite discouraged with my lack of progress and the blah photos I was seeing in the 600-700 shots I have taken. But, today, that changed. I finally haveakeeper from one of those "in the right place at the right time" moments. It's not a perfect shot, but finally good enough to make me say,"Oh my!!" Andit is exactly the subject matter that I aspire to capture. I was feeling very limited by the kit lense as I like the extremes-- extreme close and extreme zoom. But take a look at my first ever close up of "Butterfly on Flower".Ihad just gone out in the backyard totry and make some headway in my learning, and was workingon a flower at waist level, whenall of asudden, this fella (I think it's a swallowtail)just flounced right in for a landing on a blossom just above my head. It was as if he had heard I needed a lift and decided togive me a thrill. I haven't had a butterfly get this close for this long even in three visits to a butterfly conservatory! He must have been on a mission to help me out.Clearly the photo couldbe better, but for me, it's a huge step forward in my quest.Take a look. (hope my upload works!!)

Camalot



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Old Feb 10, 2007, 4:41 PM   #2
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very nice shot....I just got a d80 and I feel the same way

willow
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Old Feb 10, 2007, 5:09 PM   #3
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I agree with willow...very nice shot
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Old Feb 10, 2007, 5:41 PM   #4
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Beautiful picture ! A real "keeper"! I know how you feel. I've had a D80 for a month now and have some fantastic shots, but far more "deletes" than anticipated. I'm not new to digicams or photography in general, but must admit surprise at how sensitive to minor changes in light etc that this new generation camera is. Deleting is free and I sure get to use it. But the "keepers" make it worthwhile !
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Old Feb 10, 2007, 6:23 PM   #5
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willow1 wrote:
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very nice shot....I just got a d80 and I feel the same way

willow



Thanks to both Willow and Musket for the compliments. I am not averse to recommendations for improvement as well, so fire away if you have ideas.

Willow, I'll tell you what I told myself. It doesn't all get learned overnight, but it CAN be learned. Other peoplefigure out how to take great shots with these contraptions. So can you. Just eat the elephant one bite at a time.


I get frustrated when I see a photo op and try to set up to capture it, only to find thatthe image is blah andboring andnot at all what I saw.

I'm thinking both of us should continue to shoot up a storm and spend time thinking about what isn't quite right and how to fix it, search out answers on this forum and other vehicles of learning, use the critique forums, (painful as that may be at times...) and maybe take a class or workshop to get some hands on guidance. I am already seeing recurring patterns in the photos I shoot. So Iam going to start posting images andask foradvice on how to fix myself.

I also think, as many of the more experienced photographers have advised, that it is important toincrease my understanding ofexposure and the other key elements of photography.I have a horrible habit ofwanting to run before I walk.Don't botherme with the details! I have to force myself to read instruction manuals, much preferring tofind the 'on' buttonand let 'er rip! I don't think that works with dslr's if you want optimal shots. SoI have faced the fact that I will not be getting calls from National Geographicuntil I do my homework, so I mightas well settle down and learn what I need to learn for how ever long it takes. The goodnews is,all those crappydeletes are FREE!!!! What a perfect set up for learning bytrial and error.

We'll both get there. Not to worry!

Camalot

PS: I am also finally coming to terms with the concept of post processing. It really does improve on a good shot.I had quite a hang upabout that, thinking it was likesiliconeimplants and face lifts for beauty queens, notoriginal and honest. Until my semi-pro photographer brother helped me realize thateven film images have been post processed in the darkroom by pros since the beginning of photography. Very few published images are right out of the box without any tweeking at all. Duh...I think I am overit now.



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Old Feb 10, 2007, 7:41 PM   #6
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Camalot-

Your photo is excellent and you should feel that you are indeed making progress.

I saw you photoin a slightly different way. I wanted to focus more on the butterfly and the flower, while eliminating background intrusion.

This is certainly not gospel at all because we will all see photos slightly differently. What do you think, camalot?

MT/Sarah
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Old Feb 10, 2007, 9:49 PM   #7
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mtclimber wrote:
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Camalot-

Your photo is excellent ans you should feel that you are indeed making progress.

I saw you photoin a slightly different way. I wanted to focus more on the butterfly and the flower, while eliminating background intrusion.

This is certainly not gospel at all because will all see photos differently. What do you think?

MT/Sarah
I like it Sarah.I wouldhave preferred that I was facingempty sky instead of the pool cage. But it all happened so fast. I was so shocked that this gorgeous creature was perched 18 inches from my face and figured I had only a few seconds before he'd split. But now that I have captured the shot once, I can be more relaxed the next time, if I am graced with his presence again. Thanks for your input.
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Old Feb 10, 2007, 9:58 PM   #8
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Camalot-

This is just another example of what post processing can do for you. Most DSLR manufacturers make the upfront assumption that some post processing will be done on their DSLR camera's images.

Becoming skilled at photo editing can become a real bonus. It is really worth the effort. The same is true of taking RAW images where you have even greater control of the appearance of your image

MT/Sarah
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Old Feb 12, 2007, 4:20 PM   #9
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Nice Photo Camalot!

I recently got my D50 and 50mm 1.8 lens and must say I know exactly how you feel!!

I've snapped about 1,100 shots in three weeks and only have about 170 keepers, of which I'd only happily frame about 20. (170 of the 1100 were simply "what does this setting do?" shots...but it's free)

One thing I'm slowly learning is patience! (Although you can' tell the butterfly to sty still!) I find the more relaxed I am the better the shooting goes! If I'm rushed then I have to take twice as many shots and hope for a good one. I hope to change this in the near future as I get more experienced.

Happy shooting and don't be discouraged! Life's a journey, enjoy the ride!

-Jacques.

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