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12-29-2012, 04:34 PM   #1
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The longest Journey starts with...

A lot of frustration...

Im still very much a noob and if Im being truly honest, take more pictures with my phone than my K20D, It has taken me 2 years, but Im at the stage now where Im trying to forget the 'gear' side of things and concentrate on the image. Pentax have very usable cameras, and Im well aware that the K20D is far above my ability and that I have room to grow into it.
Having said that, Im just back from Barcelona, I promised myself I would only use my K20D, and not go near the auto mode and use one lens - my only prime (F2.4 35mm). I kept my promise, and out of 473 photo's, there isn't one keeper, and places like the Sagrada Familia turned into a complete disaster photographically. Im man enough to admit that it is my knowledge and ability that led to the photo's turning out the way they did, and Im determined to do better. It is also a good way to resist gadget lust as the latest Nikon full frame and oodles of expensive glass would not have helped me one bit.
Time to read up, understand where I went wrong and improve..
I need to go through the photo's again and then expect lots of questions about lighting, as there were so many shots where I expected the flash to fire as it was obviously needed but I couldn't get the camera to use the flash and the shots were far too dark.

Having said that Im pleased I stuck to my promise, and I can now go back and try and work out what went wrong and learn from it. If nothing else, it has cured me from gadget lust as I need to improve far more as a tog before buying gear.

Rant over - just venting....

12-29-2012, 05:26 PM   #2
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Post a few photos to see if we can figure out the problems
12-29-2012, 05:56 PM   #3
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That's a lot of photos, pick a few and folks are always willing to make suggestions.
12-29-2012, 06:07 PM   #4
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I get the filling..

Just got back home from a forest near town and had a similar experience.
My K-5 ran out of battery in the morning (Last night, I put the battery on the charger, assuming the charger was plugged... Big mistake, no spares).
so I took my P30t loaded with half a Ultramax 400 (pushed to 2 stops) and when I finished it up I was hesitant whether to use another roll... So I grabbed my old P&S, (which I gave to my mother after I bought the K-5), a Sony HX9v.
I hadnīt use it in almost 2 years and WOW, did I have fun with it! Focus was fast and DoF is so forgiving... The optical stabilizer is one of the best out there and HDR is quite nice to fool arround.. Plus a 24mm to 200 equivalent with Macro up to 2 inches.. I could go on but I donīt spect any mirracles when I download the images into my pc...

I would love to post some shots but my mother kept the cam. I wil, however, share some shots with the K-5 before it died on me. The lens is a M50/4 MACRO. It is a great little lens!

cheers,
Francisco from Argentina.


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Last edited by carrrlangas; 12-29-2012 at 06:11 PM. Reason: grrrrammar... English not my best..
12-29-2012, 06:11 PM   #5
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there is an old saying, "sometimes even in the driest hole you can find water", maybe you can crop some decent photos. JMHO, but you can use P mode, see what the camera suggests for exposure, then adjust your shutter or aperture to your liking. Practice practice practice.
12-29-2012, 06:57 PM   #6
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Maybe you're being too hard on yourself, re keepers from your trip. The "all I shoot is bad" phase may be a sign that you're further along than you realize. Take stock, compare your recent photos to those from a year or two ago, think about your goals, what interests you most, what you most want/need to learn.

Green mode certainly has its uses, and depending on what you're shooting may still be a good choice at times. P mode is a great way to start learning control of the camera while still getting the benefit of automation.

On Pentax DSLRs, the flash simply won't fire at shutter speeds faster than 1/180. Maybe that's what happened?

Have you checked out Adorama TV's "Digital Photography 1 on 1"? Highly recommended.

Hang in there, make it fun!
01-01-2013, 08:04 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Maybe you're being too hard on yourself, re keepers from your trip. The "all I shoot is bad" phase may be a sign that you're further along than you realize. Take stock, compare your recent photos to those from a year or two ago, think about your goals, what interests you most, what you most want/need to learn.

Green mode certainly has its uses, and depending on what you're shooting may still be a good choice at times. P mode is a great way to start learning control of the camera while still getting the benefit of automation.

On Pentax DSLRs, the flash simply won't fire at shutter speeds faster than 1/180. Maybe that's what happened?

Have you checked out Adorama TV's "Digital Photography 1 on 1"? Highly recommended.

Hang in there, make it fun!
I had forgotten about the flash sync issue - that explains one issue
I do think however that the inside of churches with lights and stained glass makes for a more challenging shot than my abilities and glass might allow.
I had completely forgotten about P mode, was too busy wrestling with M mode.
this forum doesn't help either, I see too may good images so get frustrated with myself over my photo's not looking like that.
After 3 days of reading up, Im going to go out and have another go at a church over here and see how I get on..
I might have lied over gadget lust as Im looking at K30's for the better low light performance as well My mate is telling me Im a fool for not getting a D7000, but Pentax were my first ever DSLR and I sort of feel loyal to them for some reason, just like I could never sell my K20 after an upgrade - it is my first so it is special to me...
01-01-2013, 08:16 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by edgedemon Quote
the inside of churches with lights and stained glass makes for a more challenging shot than my abilities and glass might allow.
Tough conditions -- generally low light, a mix of natural light through the glass and probably tungsten light fixtures, and probably restrictions on flash and/or tripod use. Look for weather and times of day when the natural light is at its brightest. Sometimes one can improvise a camera support by resting the camera on floor, pew, window ledge. But even handheld bracketed exposures are quite easy to align with software.

01-01-2013, 08:35 AM   #9
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QuoteQuote:
My mate is telling me Im a fool for not getting a D7000, but Pentax were my first ever DSLR and I sort of feel loyal to them for some reason, just like I could never sell my K20 after an upgrade - it is my first so it is special to me...
Sadly, the K20D is not a good low light camera. Even a K-x is better. We do a lot of sunsets. We expose the sunset and then bring detail out of the shadows to make the scene look more natural. We've essentially stopped using the K20D for this type of shot. The K-5 on the other hand is marvelous. My wife and I shot side by side for 6 months, me with the k20D and her with a K-5. I lost a lot of images where she got keepers. We now both shoot with K-5's. Bringing the images up and seeing her getting 3 keepers of a sunset, and me being lucky to get one really brought home what using the K20D in low light was costing me. The K-5 became a necessity, not a frill.

I have a brief description of our sunset work here, with a couple images that show the detail i was able to pull out fo almost black shadows.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographic-technique/208706-sunsets-tec...ml#post2223608
01-01-2013, 09:49 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Sadly, the K20D is not a good low light camera. Even a K-x is better. We do a lot of sunsets. We expose the sunset and then bring detail out of the shadows to make the scene look more natural. We've essentially stopped using the K20D for this type of shot. The K-5 on the other hand is marvelous. My wife and I shot side by side for 6 months, me with the k20D and her with a K-5. I lost a lot of images where she got keepers. We now both shoot with K-5's. Bringing the images up and seeing her getting 3 keepers of a sunset, and me being lucky to get one really brought home what using the K20D in low light was costing me. The K-5 became a necessity, not a frill.

I have a brief description of our sunset work here, with a couple images that show the detail i was able to pull out fo almost black shadows.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographic-technique/208706-sunsets-tec...ml#post2223608
Very impressive shots especially the one with the snow, that can't have been easy..

Im beginning to realise that myself, first in the church, then walking around the narrow winding streets in the Latin quarter at dusk, beautiful soft light, but I had to use my phone or my partners S95 to get flash free shots..
Im now researching a K30 and seeing whether that would give me enough of an improvement as well as working out what I would lose over a K20..
01-01-2013, 11:22 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
...Sometimes one can improvise a camera support by resting the camera on floor, pew, window ledge...
This. A thousand times this. Better performance at higher ISO is great and all, but IMO a steady shooting platform is the winner when the stuff you're photographing isn't moving. $2 worth of home made bean bag or $80 worth of superclamp and a little bracket for more flexibility will do more wonders for low light performance than spending $700-800 on a new body for a stop or two of higher iso performance.
01-01-2013, 01:14 PM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Sometimes one can improvise a camera support by resting the camera on floor, pew, window ledge. But even handheld bracketed exposures are quite easy to align with software.
One of the handiest things you can keep with your gear is a small bag of dry rice. Not only will the rice help absorb moisture, it will also make a very handy, very sturdy camera support if you have no other options at hand.
01-02-2013, 11:04 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by edgedemon Quote
I need to go through the photo's again and then expect lots of questions about lighting, as there were so many shots where I expected the flash to fire as it was obviously needed but I couldn't get the camera to use the flash and the shots were far too dark.
Maybe I'm misunderstanding your description of the flash problem, but the K20D (I have one, and it leaves something to be desired in low light) won't "automatically" pop up the flash. At least mine won't. I'll get a little lightning symbol in the view finder when the camera thinks the flash should be used, but I have to actually push the flash button to have it pop up.
01-02-2013, 12:44 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Boker Quote
Post a few photos to see if we can figure out the problems
I'd agree with this. Pick some of the best of what you got and see if someone can help with suggestions. Lots of time something can be salvaged in post processing - especially if you shoot in RAW format.
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