Photography Noobie

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by MCSV916, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. MCSV916 macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2011
    Hello everyone. I'm new here. I've been snooping around for some time, but decided to do a post. So, I'm new to photography. I've taken pictures all my life but just recently purchased a digital SLR. I'm here to get some feedback and perhaps some guidance to what I want to achieve.

    Camera: Canon 60D
    Lens: 18-135mm(kit), 24-70mm 2.8L, 50mm 1.4, Tokina 11-16mm 2.8
    Flash: 430EX II
    Tripod, bag

    What I want to achieve: Wedding/event photographer, family/individual portraits.

    So with the gear, is there anything that I should look into? Perhaps a zoom lens? Better lighting? What I am missing? I have gotten some awesome results with the lens and with some Lightroom help. I'm still new to that as well. What else can I benefit from? Any wedding photographers out there that want to chime in? I do like a lot of the photojournalist stuff and studio work.

    Any feedback is welcome. Please help a noobie out! Thanks in advance.
  2. tmagman macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2010
    Calgary AB
    one very fun lens to have and popular with wedding photographers is a Lensbaby. I have the composer model and it is just a lot of fun to use with the selective focus/distortion. They have several models but the composer is probably one of the easiest to use and very reasonable price wise. Check out Lensbabies' website for some great samples and such.

    Otherwise it looks like you got a good lens selection there really opens a lot of doors. I am a huge fan of Canon's 50 1.4 that you have there and it will serve you well.
  3. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2004
    I have not used the Canon 85mm f1.8 (I have an old Nikon 85mm f1.8 I am just itching to get rid of so I can justify buying the Canon instead) but the lens has an amazing reputation and the focal length is ideal for portraiture on a crop body. The 100mm f2 seems like a great alternative if you like a slightly longer lens, but one or the other would be my top pick for an affordable no-compromise portrait lens.

    For photojournalism and weddings, you may want something longer than what you've got. The 70-200mm f2.8 IS is amazing and the standard for a long low-light lens for events and fashion but it's expensive. I have the 55-250mm IS and would not recommend it for interiors; it's too slow and focuses slowly. But you'll probably need a longer zoom at some point and, especially inside, it helps if it's fast.

    If you're not bouncing your flash and/or using a diffuser buy that. Cheap, makes a huge difference.
  4. NathanCH macrumors 65816


    Oct 5, 2007
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Looks like you have more than enough gear... I don't know any "noobies" with such expensive gear. Buying more stuff wont make you better. You should invest in more practice! :)

    Post some of your shots
  5. MCSV916 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2011
    Thanks for the responses. I'm still learning everything believe it or not. I just keep buying the gear as I learn about them. I'm in love with the 24-70MM 2.8L. It's amazing. I suppose I do need a zoom lens and some sort of lighting setup. I really have to stop buying and do more practicing.
  6. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2004
    One approach is to buy everything you can afford and that interests you and then sell what you don't need. The resale on lenses is good and you'll be more confident in your gear. This is an expensive path but you end up with the right kit.

    Another thing to consider is that if you want to do this professionally, the way to go is generally not too exciting for us gear-heads: use two camera bodies, one with a fast wide zoom (24-70mm on full frame) one with a fast long zoom (70-200mm IS on crop). Have both on you at all times, each with a flash, carry nothing else.

    If it's just a hobby, the sky is the limit.
  7. HBOC macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2008
    a good resource that I have found very informative is This Forum.
  8. mtbdudex macrumors 68000


    Aug 28, 2007
    SE Michigan
    somewhere its written – or said – you need to take your first 10,000 pictures to truly learn photography, then your next 5,000 will see incremental improvements…..and next 5,000 will see more incremental improvements...and on and on
    Sorta like building your 1st house, you build/learn, then if you have time and $$ build a 2nd one!

    Post some of your shots
  9. MCSV916 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 20, 2011
    Thank you all for the kind responses. I will definitely post pictures in the near future. I'm constantly looking for a reason to shoot!
  10. TheSVD macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    The Jolly Ol' Midlands, England
    dude, seriously - your gear is fricken nice! don't worry about gear for now, its more than enough - I've been shooting for a couple of years and my gears nowhere near as nice haha!

    now, to practice - if you want some general shooting tips then here's the place to come :) even drop me a PM if you want further help.

    Really, don't buy anymore lenses for now - the only ones you kinda need would be a good zoom and maybe a macro anyway which arent essential anyway (I know you could get loooads of lenses I just mean in general terms) but nows the time for getting out there and shooting!

    Your so lucky to have the 24-70L as well, I'm saving for that right now haha :( but seriously, get out there and practice, then post your shots - best way for us to give you advice :)

    Any old joe can buy the fastest car in the world, its the driver who makes the difference ;)
  11. Doylem macrumors 68040


    Dec 30, 2006
    Wherever I hang my hat...
    Lots of gear, but "constantly looking for a reason to shoot"... Erm... sounds like you've got the cart before the horse. You can't buy passion and committment. Put your wallet away, get shooting and learn through being critical of your results...
  12. flosseR, Jan 22, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2011

    flosseR macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2009
    the cold dark north
    +1 for this...
    you can't just "learn" event photography, you need to be able to "see" and envision the shots. Yes you have a nice kit but that's like having a ferrari without a drivers license.

    I agree about the 10000 shots but I might add that you need at least 2000-5000 additions shots for EACH lens before you know what it can do and how to use it.

    The only thing I can think of is a diffuser dome for your flash as all wedding photographers shoot with flash for fill-light. There is also no way that you are fully familiar with your camera or the lenses or lighting.

    In essence: if your long term achievement is to become a wedding photographer/Event / portraits, then you better start learning the methods, tips and tricks... and I mean LOTS of practice. The field is highly saturated by people who "just do it" and wedding couples become quite choosy nowadays so you need to know what the heck you are doing in order to a) build a reputation and b) impress your clients.

    The gear should be your least worry. lighting and creativity should be your MAJOR focus.
    just my 2 c.
  13. Edge100 macrumors 68000

    May 14, 2002
    Where am I???
    You already own three zoom lenses.

    Or do you mean 'telephoto'?

    Perhaps learning basic terminology is a good place to start, before you jump into wedding photography?!?

    In all seriousness, learn everything you can about what you want to shoot.
  14. burningbright, Jan 24, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2011

    burningbright macrumors regular

    Jul 5, 2008
    Your focus should be on learning composition, I think.

    Read Michael Freeman's books on the topic for starters, then find wedding photographs or portraits that you really like, especially where the subject isn't that good-looking or where the weather was lousy. Analyse the hell out of why they appeal to you. Repeat that countless times.

    Meanwhile, find someone to periodically model for you to test out your ideas as they develop, and make sure you've got an idea about what you're trying to test, practice or achieve with each photo you take, before you take it.

    It's not just about taking a million practice shots, but also having an intent behind each of them so you know how each one measures up.

    My tuppenny bit.

    Good luck!

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