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Old Oct 8, 2011, 11:25 AM   #1
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Hi!

So I have been browsing these forums for a bit, and finally decided to upgrade to a micro 4/3 camera and purchased an E-PL3 .

I love it so far, but definitely a learning curve!

How would you all suggest going about learning the basics of photography? like how to choose the right manual settings based on the photo you are taking and the lens that you are using?

Also, as this is my first interchangeable lens camera, I will need to start working on growing my lens selection from just the kit lens (although may be difficult now on my extremely minimal salary as a resident). Where would you start as far as additional lenses for standard shooting? And where can you usually find the best deal on lenses? (I am pretty keen on getting a pancake lens at some point just because it probably would make the unit pocketable for me).

Anyways, thanks for any advice and happy shooting!
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Old Oct 8, 2011, 10:46 PM   #2
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Hi,

Congrats on getting the E-PL3. A great camera and one that should give you years of pleasure.

As for your questions:

The first and probably most important thing you can do to get the most out of your camera is to simply read the manual that came with it front to back and have it with you in your kit bag.

I would also download a copy onto your PC. This would make it much easier to find the info you're looking for.

Visit the Olympus website and take a look at the various tutorials available
for the types of photography you would like to get familiar with.

Look at the tutorials available, here at Steve's as well. There are many fine tips here to help shorten the learning curve.


Look at some of Scott Kelby's books on Digital Photography. They are easy to read, very informative and are good reference books. Best of all, they are cheap- about 15bucks on Amazon.com. These books will tell you about the methods and lenses used to achieve a particular kind of shot.

Go to photography websites such as smugmug.com and PBase.com that photographers and enthusiast's use to store and show their photographs.
look at the types of photographs that you find inspirational and examine the EXIF data associated with each one. The EXIF data will tell you the shutter speed, lens, aperture, as well as all the various settings chosen by the photographer to get that shot your looking at.

Visit this forum, look at the posts, ask a lot of questions....

But most of all have fun and take lots of pictures.


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Old Oct 9, 2011, 10:32 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axanar View Post
Also, as this is my first interchangeable lens camera, I will need to start working on growing my lens selection from just the kit lens (although may be difficult now on my extremely minimal salary as a resident). Where would you start as far as additional lenses for standard shooting? And where can you usually find the best deal on lenses? (I am pretty keen on getting a pancake lens at some point just because it probably would make the unit pocketable for me).
I would do some shooting with what you have for now and develop an idea of what type subjects you like to capture, which will lead you in the direction of which lenses you need. The 9-18 superwide Zuiko covers a much different set of subjects compared to a telezoom such as the 40-150. After shooting for a while with the 14-42 you will start getting an idea whether you miss the wider or longer range more and that will tell you what you should be getting next.

These days I am carrying three prime lenses that only narrowly covers more of a focal length range than the one lens you currently have, but are much faster for a wider variety of lighting conditions, the 12, 20 and 45mm primes. I have a much wider range of available lenses but only carry those when I figure I will need them.

As you noted, lens upgrades are not inexpensive. If you buy something now and it turns out a few weeks or months from now you would have been better off spending that money on something else completely different, it might take you a while to accumulate the funds to go in that direction.

Most micro four-thirds lenses are close to the same price everywhere these days. I know of no one place where "deals" can be had on any micro optics. One way you can accumulate inexpensive optics is to adapt manual focus lenses, but that kind-of defeats the whole purpose of buying a micro body as far as keep the size and weight down, especially on the smaller bodies models like the E-PL3 and E-PM1.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 4:24 PM   #4
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Thanks for the advice everyone!

I will have to keep taking it out and practicing with it and will definitely consult some of those references.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 8:10 PM   #5
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Oh, and what about a Panasonic 20mm f/1.7. It seems like that guy is in everyone's kit
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Old Oct 11, 2011, 4:42 PM   #6
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The iAuto setting should provide you with good pics while you are learning about your camera and photography. I have the E-PL2 and I am very pleased with it, especially since I moved from a Canon 40D and three lenses to this system. I never found myself wishing I had not sold my Canon gear. As Greg mentioned, the four thirds systems add up to a lot of weight and bulk to carry around. This is where the micro four thirds systems shine.
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