Where should i start shooting???

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by stuart.mccollum, Dec 1, 2008.

  1. stuart.mccollum macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    #1
    Hi guys,
    I have had a canon 400d with a standard kit lens and a sigma 70-300 lens for nearly 2 years now. I got for when i went to florida last year but i have not really used it much.

    I am starting to mess around with photoshop alot now, not that im any good but hey we all hae to start somewhere, i also use aperture and recently got lightroom.

    But none of this software is any good unless i have good photo's.

    My question is really, what should i start shooting, i have seen really class photo's on here and in other places. I live close to some lakes etc. and a large city, i am also surrounded by alot of countryside.

    Hope you guys can help
     
  2. BrentGambrell macrumors member

    BrentGambrell

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #3
    I wouldn't say to go and shoot something you think would be a great shot, I would say shoot something that might inspire you ;).

    If your into land, water, people, etc. Shoot what YOU want to shoot. No one can tell you where or what to shoot, it's totally up to you.
     
  3. kornyboy macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2004
    Location:
    Knoxville, TN (USA)
    #4
    Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5G77 Safari/525.20)

    City Skyline pictures are pretty neat if you can find a good spot, but anything with rolling hills and country side is nice as well.



    I've learned a lot by finding a picture of something and trying to recreate it. This helps to understand how different lighting works as well as how a lot of the tools that are in the software work. I wish you the best of luck.
     
  4. rpaloalto macrumors 6502a

    rpaloalto

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2005
    Location:
    Palo Alto CA.
    #5
    You got a digital camera. So their is not much of a limit. On how many shots you get.
    Just go out and click away. Shoot everything and anything. Shoot trees, leaves, bushes, fences, gates, doors, polls, plants people, pets, and rocks.

    Take multiple shots of each subject. From different angles. Even wear some old clothes so you can lie down on the ground, to take a shot.
    you can collect objects from around your house. Take them outside and set them up in a interesting groups and shoot that.

    95% of your shots will probably look stupid. But their will always be something interesting or nice. Especially for using with photoshop
     
  5. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #6
    Look for well-lit opportunities. Go out for a walk when the light is good, which is usually early in the morning or late in the afternoon. When the light gets golden and the shadows get long, you're bound to find scenes and objects that glow with visual interest. If something catches your attention, ask yourself if it's in good light; if it is, walk around it or change your angle of view until you find the most interesting composition.

    There's also the Doylem technique: find an interesting view and stay glued to that spot until the lighting and sheep all come together for you. Hehe.

    Personally, I rarely have the time or patience to stake out a particular spot and wait for some magic to happen; I'm therefore more of an opportunistic photographer, but to each his own. ;)
     
  6. termina3 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    TX
    #7
    This was also often used by Henri Cartier-Bresson, one of the greatest photographers of all time (Magnum founding member, but Henri doesn't really need an introduction).
     
  7. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #8
    I wasn't really suggesting Doylem pioneered the idea, but he's our resident proponent of it, so I dubbed it after him. :)
     
  8. termina3 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Location:
    TX
    #9
    More power to him, and I doubt Cartier-Bresson started it either.
     
  9. synth3tik macrumors 68040

    synth3tik

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #10
    The thing to do is go out and explore and experiment. Going out to lakes and parks around your place is a good place to start. While there start playing around with some different techniques. I suggest putting your camera into manual mode and forcing yourself to make all your own adjustment. This will help get you more familiar with what the camera can do and will also help you to create more artistic techniques. A camera is full auto is good for grabbing fast shots, like you would if you were on vacation, but having control over the camera will help make your pictures more interesting and artistic.

    One thing I like to do sometimes which gives varied results is to switch my camera to Aperture Priority. I use old Nikon AI lenses so the camera does not think there is even a lenses present to prioritize. Some times with works out other times not. It is just a fun experiment.

    Also when shooting try and remember the rule of thirds. Just imagine your image as being made up of 3 rows and 3 columns. This will help keep your images balanced.

    Try to create layers. In the attached images I was able to get 5 "layers" First is the girl in black, next is the guy who's face is popping into the image on the right. Next is the guy smoking and the girl in the striped top. After that is the guy with the baseball hat with the girl and final the person all the way in back with the white shirt. The main subjects are the girl in black with the guy smoking, if it was not for the layers the picture would not be as full or interesting. The mean mugging from the guy smoking also adds to it:D. This was a test shot I did outside a local night club after having a few drinks myself:D.

    I should add just for reference.
    Canon 350D
    Nikon AI 85mm 2.0f
    ISO 800
    1/400 sec
    Aperture wide open (2.0)

    The only post processing was to add a little green into the image (Tokyo style)
     

    Attached Files:

  10. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #11
    Your reasoning is kind of backwards, you don't take photos so that you can play with tools. You take phots because you have something to say about the subject. Maybe it's only "hey chaeck this out!"and then you us those tools to make the image better

    Find subject matter that you are interested in. You will do best if you have some connection to the subject mater. Some people like skiing, flowers or their own kids. Anything can be a subject. cars, dogs, buildings, insects, landscapes, city scapes,....

    Maybe you just like abstract patterns? Get some glassware and bottles and shine lights on them. Or try "food photography" if you are into cooking. If you happen to like "indoor stuff" then you can do a lot of work right on the kitchen table, go buy some flowers and try close ups. Or shoot a photo essay on how to replace a hard driver in a notebook computer or re-key a lock. There are endless table top projects you can shoot after dinner in an couple hours. No need for travel or waiting for the weather.

    Just yesterday I went on a short hike to check out a "new to me" place and wrote up a description of what I found and took photos to illustrate the writing. Go any place and do that. The beach or a super market would do.

    Another idea is to get some coffee table books from the library of the "masters" and try to set up some shots that emulate a style you like
     
  11. seenew macrumors 68000

    seenew

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2005
    Location:
    Brooklyn
    #12
    "hey guys, I just bought some shoes, where should I walk first?"

    :eek:
     
  12. stuart.mccollum thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    #13
    some really great advice in here guys, it has been frosty here lately and there has been some really nice scenary about, think i might take my camera out and about this weekend and see what i can come up with.

    I was also looking on another forum and was really interested in a light box! What do you guys think about this idea?

    stuart
     
  13. Doylem macrumors 68040

    Doylem

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2006
    Location:
    Wherever I hang my hat...
    #14
    You've got a terrific camera, two lenses, Photoshop, Aperture and Lightroom... and now you're thinking about a lightbox...

    You live near a city, with "some lakes" and "a lot of countryside".

    No doubt you have family, friends... maybe a pet.

    The world is full of miracles and wonders... yet you don't know what to shoot...

    Hmmm... try this exercise. When you've got a day to spare, take the bus into town and pretend it's the very first time you've seen the place. You're a tourist in your own home town; shoot loads of pictures...

    If that doesn't work, I suggest you forget about photography and give your camera gear to some kid who's got a million ideas in his head, but can't afford a camera...
     
  14. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #15
    Worried about the competition for the sheep? ;)
     
  15. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #16
    Prove it.
     
  16. BrentGambrell macrumors member

    BrentGambrell

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #17

    hahahahaha
     
  17. GT41 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #18
    I have to agree with Doylem here. I always thought I live in a boring place (Toronto), but that's cause I'm familiar with the parts of the city I always travel. But if you take the time and look for things going on you will find lots of interesting angles, lighting, objects which can make for fantastic photos. Really walk around where you live and see what catches your imagination. It maybe your neighbourhood, houses, cars, buildings, street views, people walking on the sidewalk, parks... whatever. Take a picture if it hits you as being "neat" and see how it turns out on your camera.
    On that note I often do this and get terrible results, but I've at least learnt not to repeat the error a second or third time. When you get something you are happy with figure out why it worked.
     
  18. GT41 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #19
    One more thing. I can't imagine there is a place in the world where you can walk more than a mile and not find something to take a picture of. There are few if any "bad" subjects for photographing, you just have to find a creative way to take a picture of it to make it tell a story or stick out.
     

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