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04-24-2011, 04:43 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
The caveat with f/8 and be there is that the closer the subject is to the lens (such as in macro photography) the thinner the absolute depth of field is. Nevertheless, even in those modest macro settings (1:2 or less) f/8 is generally a good choice.
Could you explain that a little bit more?

04-24-2011, 06:53 AM   #32
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Yes Rio, I know you know.

As for explaining the relationship between focus distance and depth of field, it is well described on websites such as these:

Depth of field - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For a given format size, at moderate subject distances, DOF is approximately determined by the subject magnification and the lens f-number. For a given f-number, increasing the magnification, either by moving closer to the subject or using a lens of greater focal length, decreases the DOF; decreasing magnification increases DOF. For a given subject magnification, increasing the f-number (decreasing the aperture diameter) increases the DOF; decreasing f-number decreases DOF.

Depth of field
Quite generally, the depth of field depends on the object distance, the focal length, the F-number, and on the perceptivity of the observer.

And see here for practical examples of this phenomenon: Photography Techniques: Perspective
04-24-2011, 09:38 AM   #33
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Yes Ash, I know you know I know you know I know, y'know?

After you, Pierre.
No Jacques, after you.
No no, after you.
No, after you.


Anyway, I was just (hopefully) spewing some suggestions for wander-around-and-shoot photography, within different paradigms. Yes yes, all camera users should know DOF, and how macro photography has almost none. Hmmm, if we think too much about macro, do we become macrocephalic? That's better than the opposite anyway. (Yes, my head IS fat enough.)

And another suggestion for shooting and learning: I think it was one of the Capa boys who said, "If the picture isn't good enough, then you're not close enough." Especially when shooting portrayals -- MOVE IN! Context shots are nice. Close-ups are revealing. If nothing else, they force a reaction, which is usually more interesting than being blandly ignored. I hate ignorance.
04-24-2011, 07:22 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Hmmm, if we think too much about macro, do we become macrocephalic? That's better than the opposite anyway.
I consider it such:

Don't like/Avoid macro = macrophobic
Like macro = macrophilic
Obsessed with macro (aka. yeatzee) = macrophrenic

04-24-2011, 07:49 PM   #35
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Read your post and it reminded me of when I started out too!

Funny thing is, nowadays... its all about simplifying my kit and equipment!
Its true that when we start off, were running almost entirely on advice. And that's why we end-up with 1/2 a dozen different opinions and ideas(that's normal). And that's just the way it is in this hobby as almost everyone develops their own techniques and preference along the way.

But if there's one thing that will save you, its the fact that the 18-55 can and will capture what you're after. Which is more than likely what motivated you to take pictures in the first place right? (right!) - So its all good.

Now get out there, and bring home the bacon!

Here are a few 18-55 images to help set things straight;






Okay, some are not the purest of landscape type shots, but... you get the picture right?

Last edited by JohnBee; 04-24-2011 at 07:55 PM.
04-24-2011, 08:44 PM   #36
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Yeah, I get the picture (boom-tish)
Thanks mate!

I am starting to get the impression that the kit 18-55 is actually not a bad lens (I'm assuming my Samsung is the same as the Pentax? ie; just re-badged)
It's seems very versatile.
I'm still keeping my eye on ebay for a well priced 24mm, but thats more for s**ts and giggles now
04-24-2011, 09:56 PM   #37
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The kit lens is very nice in good lighting. It's main weakness is in low light conditions and it's a bit weak at 18mm wide open. It's definitely got a very usable FL range for me.
04-25-2011, 03:23 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lurch Quote
I am starting to get the impression that the kit 18-55 is actually not a bad lens (I'm assuming my Samsung is the same as the Pentax? ie; just re-badged)
It's seems very versatile.
Yes, same lens, also sometimes badged as Schneider, IIRC. And (at the risk of restarting the kit.lens wars) vastly underrated by those who don't know how to use it, and/or those who have only experienced bad copies. (People go through multiple bad copies of expensive lenses, too.)

I have a hypothesis: P&S shooters familiar with the almost-infinite DOF of their very short lenses, buy a K9 or K-y with kit.lens as their first dSLR. And they shoot, and their shots aren't as overall-sharp as with their old P&S. And they complain, and read similar complaints, and think, KIT.LENS SUCKS, I GOTTA UPGRADE. And they spend hundreds of bucks on something slightly 'better'. And management and stockholders of lensmakers are very happy. And another 18-55 hits eBay cheap. Why, one might almost suspect that PenHoya honchos are rather chagrined at selling such a quality kit.lens, and so start the rumours themselves, to promote upgrade sales. Could it be? CONSPIRACY?!?!?

Anyway, my "Tav & f/7 & 1/200 & AF.C & stay alert" suggestion is a way to thwart that conspiracy. Those are fast-response settings. My "shoot real slow" and "shoot B&W" suggestions are other approaches to camera-handling and idea adjustment. Except for buying a tripod (or beanbag), these are low-cost (and hopefully low-pain) paths towards camera mastery.

QuoteQuote:
I'm still keeping my eye on ebay for a well priced 24mm, but thats more for s**ts and giggles now
Just for ducks, try to borrow some 24's, take some test shots stopped-down, and see if the results really out-class the kit.lens at the same settings. Until you get to a rather pricey 24/2, you may be surprised. I try to concentrate on primes that are notably faster (or weirder) than a zoom at the same focal length. Otherwise, why bother?

04-25-2011, 04:26 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wombat Quote
Since you're in Canberra, why not visit the National Gallery? They have over 13,000 Australian photographs in their collection. Looking at what others have done can be really inspiring. Find one or two you really like then go out and see if you can do something similar. Bring your mistakes back to the forum and find out how to correct them, then have another go. Bit by bit it'll all come together. If you can understand a Debian manual, you're home and hosed with photography!
Good suggestion!

The common "go out and shoot" admonition usually leaves out the part about how to judge the results.

Once one gets beyond focus, camera level, exposure, etc it is difficult to judge quality from composition & more subjective standpoints by oneself. You must develop goals you'd like to meet and try to meet them; it will help to enlist others to judge if you are being successful (if you care about other opinions.)

Setting up a workflow to separate the not so terrible from the truly awful is important - and when you decide that a photo should be deleted it may help to identify what is wrong with it before hitting the delete key. Too often I discard something because "I just don't like it" without understanding why I don't like it; but there is a lot to learn from exercising critical judgment.
04-25-2011, 06:11 AM   #40
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6 months newbie

This is a very useful and informative thread. I've had my K10D since Christmas, and I've learned so much. Setting Tav and going for it is very rewarding for fast street work, and taking my time to work through the different modes has paid off too.

For me the most daunting part was working through the hundreds of photos... Shooting in RAW limits how quickly you can assess/keep/discard each shot, finding the right application to do this has made a huge difference (Faststone does it for me). When I was started I was frozen for a while cos I didn't know how to cope with the volume of images. Once you know what you want and how to get it and aren't just playing that becomes easier too.

I have also gone from hefting a bag of manual primes everywhere to using the kit lens almost exclusively, with a manual 135mm in the bag if I need the length. I take the manual primes out for fun and shallow DOF shots. I would consider getting a Tamron 18-50 f2.8 one day for the extra speed, or a couple of limiteds for smaller size, but there's no urgency.
04-28-2011, 04:40 AM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeztastic Quote
When I was started I was frozen for a while cos I didn't know how to cope with the volume of images.
I never knew I needed image management software until I got it (Lightroom). Then I wondered how I had ever gotten along without it.

QuoteQuote:
I have also gone from hefting a bag of manual primes everywhere...
One never need tote more than the number that will fit comfortably in one's pockets, plus one on the camera.
05-02-2011, 09:47 PM   #42
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Just a quick update.

So I started my photogrpahy course on Saturday. To be frank; it was a bit of an average start. Probably due to all the help I've gotten here over the last few weeks (thanks guys!) most of it was a bit snooze-worthy. The tutor didnt do a great job of explaining himself (he was talking about the relationship between focal length, F-stops, and depth of field.
I ended up having to completely re-explain the whole thing to most of the students after the class. I will keep going (I have paid for it after all).

On happier news, I've ordered the APO ver of the Sigma 70-300, DG Macro Zoom. Also I'm on the hunt for a 24mm Sigma Super-Wide-II. Also, my battery showed up - so happy days.

I've also been noticing an improving ratio of crap vs usable when I get home and check out my photo's on the laptop; so thats encouraging.
05-03-2011, 03:11 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lurch Quote
On happier news, I've ordered the APO ver of the Sigma 70-300, DG Macro Zoom.
I have this lens, it's awesome! So much pretty zooming good choice!

On second though, I also have a Sigma 50-200mm zoom, which I might sell due to the fact that the two main lenses I use is my Sigma 70-300mm, Sigma 17-70mm (my favourite lens, it's fantastic!), and occasionally my Pentax 18-55mm kit lens...

I really do like the Sigma lenses! lol
05-06-2011, 02:42 AM   #44
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It arrived tonight
*Dances*

Hopefully over the weekend, Ado and I will get a chance to put it through it's paces; side-by-side with Ado's DL
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