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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #1
Since we were headed for more of a discussion rather than posting pics I thought I'd start a new thread for the general chat stuff.

So in continuing from the other thread.... :cool:

To nobody in particular, just talking about the topic...
I know that I have lots to learn, (Especially with lighting) but composition and cropping are often overlooked in many "people" pix that I see.
Some people just crop in all the wrong places and then don't know what went wrong. Cutting off toes or fingers is a big faux pas. Never crop ON a joint or you get an "amputee effect" subliminally. Always leave more empty space in the direction that the subject is looking if they are not looking directly at the camera. Don't crop too closely on top of someone's head if you can help it. Don't show almost all of their legs and then not show the feet.... If you can't see the feet, crop higher.
Think about how the eye naturally moves from the bottom left of a picture and see where the pathway takes you.... Are you guided to a highlight of the pic, or to an armpit? There are several compositional rules which, while made to be sometimes broken, will generally result in a better "people" picture.
Also, the BEST "people" pix tell a story. That story may be abstract or minimalist, but there's room for the viewer to infer some of their own thoughts. It could be a special smile, or the way a person is looking at something off camera, or the way they are interacting with their surroundings or someone else. For ME, the best "people" pix are not staged. That's not to say that there aren't thousands of great pix which are the result of hours and hours of planning. "Capturing a moment" is a real art that it can take years of experience to master. I get lucky sometimes, but I've seen photographers work in situations where less than a second variance on when they snap makes all the difference in the picture, and they have a knack for reading when to shoot and know how to anticipate better than the average guy. It can be impressive to watch.
:cool:
There's always lots to learn, Michael. I'm pretty seasoned when it comes to photography and video stuff but I always learn something on each shoot. An open mind makes for great photography.
On the cropping issue. I always try to get my framing exactly how I want it in the camera. As a buddy of mine told me "cropping is for farmers." :lol: That said I do create different versions of my shots by cropping them. Sometimes when I need to I shoot really loose knowing that I'm going to have to do a little PS work.
 

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While there are rules to follow when it comes to photography and composition. Remember that it is still an art, and like all art its subjective.

I've taken photo's that one "pro" scoffed at and another said it was spot on. Meanwhile people out of the "industry" thought it was incredible and have asked for large prints (sadly never enough to make any $$$ hehe).

A true artist will more than likely get the attention of the majority, but don't always freak out when one person tells you there's something terribly wrong with one of your favorite photo's.
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #3
Oh yeah with out a doubt. Rules are rules and they're fun to break.
I've had a bunch of people tell me "oh you missed this" or "see this here it's not right" :rolleyes: Unless there is a client standing behind me I shoot for my own eye. I've cropped stuff out and used funny compositions and to me they all work.
 

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Since we were headed for more of a discussion rather than posting pics I thought I'd start a new thread for the general chat stuff.

So in continuing from the other thread.... :cool:
Excellent move.
:thumbup:

There's always lots to learn, Michael. I'm pretty seasoned when it comes to photography and video stuff but I always learn something on each shoot. An open mind makes for great photography.
On the cropping issue. I always try to get my framing exactly how I want it in the camera. As a buddy of mine told me "cropping is for farmers." :lol: That said I do create different versions of my shots by cropping them. Sometimes when I need to I shoot really loose knowing that I'm going to have to do a little PS work.
I agree that there's always lots to learn, and as I said before, "rules" are made to be broken, BUT they serve as a great guide. I don't care how cool a pic looks, toes or fingers chopped off arbitrarily is a flusher for me.
I'd LOVE to "crop on the shot", but I can really only do that (at my level of experience) if I have a defined concept up front. I TRY, but I always leave myself a bit of "wiggle room" if possible. I HATE when I have a great pic except for one side being too close to the edge and there's nothing that I can do about it but crop the entire thing even tighter.
I OFTEN do "Different Versions" of pix. Sometimes it's because there is a different picture to be had, sometimes it's because I just want to practice with the tools and work with things and MAKE a different picture out of something.
:)
 

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Inked Hotness
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so.... my kit lens on my camera broke... i only have one that does far away shots.... poop. i really cant afford another one right now, but hoping i can before the baby gets here!

i actually just need a whole new damn camera. so if anyone has any DSLR's they'd like to donate... i'd be greatly appreciative! :lol:
 

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Inked Hotness
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i think everyone thinks that the way they do photography is the 'right' way... esp the big guys who have been around a while. sometimes i'll get a shot and accidentally crop a foot or hand out, but the pic is still fun and interesting.

i look at other people's work and feel inspired. i feel like i have sooo much work to do and dont know anything. i've never read a book, i've never taken a class. i just picked up the camera one day, and said, hey... i kinda like this! LOL.

i think a LOT of my negativity comes from my equipment though. i feel horrible because i only have a 6.3 mp dslr right now, and feel that my stuff would be a LOT better with some sharper lenses and just all around better equipment!
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #9
Turn that frown around missy. :p

You should be shooting for you and nobody else. Photography, like any other art form, is personal expression. Sure there is a technical side and rules to adhere to (or break) but what looks good to you is good. Duke Ellington use to say "If it sounds good, it is good" - that's easily applied to photography. If it looks good to you then it is good. ;) If you listen to everyone say "oh this is the way to do it" or "you did this wrong, do this instead" all you're doing is replicating their style and not developing your own.

Don't blame your equipment. Figure out how to get the best image you can out of it. You don't need top of the line gear to make interesting pictures. Go to Flickr and look at some of the stuff people are doing with camera apps on their phones, seriously some of it is really good. I was really fortunate to get my D300 but my D70 still makes great images, as does my camera apps on my Droid and I'm sure the Holga will take great images too. Do any of those tools create technically perfect images every time? Hell no. Will I learn to work with them to achieve what I want to out of them? Hell yes. To me it's the journey not the end product. Well of course seeing the end product is pretty awesome and hearing someone say "Wow! That's a great picture. How do you do that?" Makes the journey all the better.

Well that's just my $.02 FWIW

Hang in there and keep at it. Mmmmkay :D

/rambling
 

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WRAWRRR, BEAR CLAW!
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Ellie, what Robb said.

Whenever I've tried to copy someone else, creatively, it doesn't turn out the way I want, so I just do it 'my way', and I guess it works because people still want me to do stuff for them. I had one of my all time idols - Steve Stanford - compliment me on my 'style' once. Since then I just do what I do.

Practice. Enjoy it. Don't force it. It takes awhile to develop your skills, but like Robb said, it's the journey. Look back a year from now and see how much you've improved.

Also, don't get upset at your equipment - think of it like a Focus - you're better off learning how to drive the **** out of it stock first, then moving up to a bigger and better car or getting that Stg 3 turbo kit, because you'll be a better driver in the end. Hell go backwards - get a $25 Holga like Robb is getting and be old skool and have fun.
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #11
So my first rolls of film in years are off to the lab in SF. :D
Can't wait to see the results. I'm probably going to go with B&W so I can process the stuff at home then scan the negs.
 

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Liter-a-cola? I measure my drinks in YARDS!
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:(

Borked the Canon in a mountain biking crash on Monday. The screen was cracked. I took it apart to see if the LCD can be easily replaced but it doesn't look like it. And since I'm sure repair would be 100+ and the camera is only 220, I'm going to be camera-less for a bit. Oh wells....
 

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Just wondering others opinions here. I have found lately that I am getting really bored with and tired of seeing heavily photochopped pictures. I don't own Photoshop and I don't know if I ever willI really prefer to work at getting my pictures, I'm not over experienced, in fact I'd still call myself a novice over an amateur at times.

Only thing i really use editing software for at all is to add a signature or sharpen, for the most part. Once in a while I got out on a whim and do something else but i rarely really like it other than blurring a point less background to get a different effect from the picture.

What are some thoughts on the photoshop usage.
 

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Just as stated earlier, art is subjective..... I honestly don't care if its photoshopped, lightroomed, or apetured. I know that most incredible photographs have gone through some post processing its the reality of photography. Even back in the oh so "pure" film days Ansel Adams was known as a master of the dark room. His photo's didn't come out of the camera that way, he was amazing at massaging them.

Personally I like photo's that look "natural", doesn't mean they weren't processed to hell. But in reality sometimes colors pop and its almost impossible to get that straight out of the camera in some way.

Are you shooting RAW or JPEG? Because if you're shooting JPEG your photo's are being heavily processed by the JPEG compression in the camera and how either Canon, Nikon, Pentax, or whoever thought would make that photo look its best out of your camera.

And if you're shooting RAW good luck getting a decent image that doesn't looks utterly washed out come straight off the sensor.
 

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I have a golden finger
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i try to shoot with both... i'm learning lightroom and photochop, but sometimes, what looks good when i'm messing with it, doesn't look as good on the export.
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #16
Depends on what I'm shooting really and it's all subjective.

I'm shooting RAW about 95% of the time and everything I shoot gets processed in Aperture to adjust for contrast, exposure and saturation. Sometimes I do a black and white conversion and sometimes I tweek colors a lot. It really depends on how I'm feeling about an image. :cool:

With beauty and fashion styles I do some pretty extensive retouching but then fade it way back to blend the models natural look with the retouched image. I've got some pretty good chops when it comes to retouching :D

Product photography gets processed to fix imperfections and to make logos pop. It's pretty much what the client wants. Same with color correction in video.

With my art stuff anything goes. :cool: <--- needs a beatnik smiley

I hear you though, Glen. It's just laughable to see some of the over processed shots and what's considered good now BUT as they say art is subjective and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I'm very humble about my photography and it's hard to really bash someone for what I think looks like crap. To me oldskool Playboy is where it's at and I really can't stand the "hot import nights anime look" but someone out there likes it enough to do it.
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #17
So I purchased my first roll of black and white 120 film since.... Well ever...

:lol:

I went to the camera store to drop off some film and when I put 2 rolls of 120 on the counter it was like I instantly had some "geek-cred"
 

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One of these days I'll migrate from the point-and-shoot world into DSLR. I guess what amazes me is (more or less) sticker shock for any "kit" from a major company, and how polarized people get with brands (just like cars).

I'll probably end up playing around with shots, and then diving into a course or few. I guess I'm getting bored with some of the car stuff lately, and need another hobby :)
 

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LET'S GO RIDE BIKES
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Discussion Starter #20
If you're thinking of upgrading your P&S and don't like the sticker shock of some of the DSLR cameras or you would rather have something smaller but with great image quality, take a look at the Olympus Ep-1 A friend of mind did a Route 66 trip with one and the images are spectacular!
 
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