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12-17-2013, 01:45 PM   #16
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I wasn't meaning to make fun - just to have some fun, that's all.


As for me, I'm not such a great book learner, so I would definitely opt for the Himalayan shao-lin master ninja monk training regimen, if only it were so!


LOL

12-17-2013, 02:40 PM - 1 Like   #17
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An exceptional resource for understanding Photography is You Tube.

I enjoy Mike Browne's videos they are short and succinct. He is an excellent presenter of information not to mention very knowledgeable.

This is a link to his PLAYLISTS. I suggest you start with the Exposure Playlist.

He is quite knowledgeable.
12-17-2013, 02:43 PM   #18
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:-D I actually really do appreciate sarcastic humor. I'm not offended at all. Rather acknowledging it.

It might help to know that my daughter is homeschooled so something laid out in a course format would be great for her.

I prefer the feel and smell of real paper myself! Ebooks might be great for some people, but I prefer the tactile feedback of an actual book.
12-17-2013, 02:55 PM   #19
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Another vote for Bryan Peterson's book Understanding Exposure. (I did find his other books to be less useful, but I really like this one.)

Your profile doesn't indicate where you're based. If you're anywhere near New York City, I can highly recommend the photography school I've attended (for level 1 and 2) classes: PhotoUno

photography classes nyc | photography courses nyc | photography school nyc | PhotoUno

One of the things I learned from this course is that, at least for me, I retained information better when it was spread out over a series of hands-on lessons. Their introductory course is 6 weeks (2 hours per week), and 2 hours is about my limit before my brain reaches "buffer full" when it comes to photography. I liked the class format, which was a 2-hour lesson with some theory, an in-class exercise (often fun) and a short homework assignment.

There also are some photography instructors/schools who offer crash courses, and these can be good for getting you started, or for tackling a particular topic, but I think that it's hard to absorb much after the first couple of hours. If there is a good camera store (or community college) nearby, it may offer workshops or short courses.

If there are no live courses nearby, then online schools might be useful. Bryan Peterson has established a school (Perfect Picture School of Photography) and offers a range of mostly 4-week classes (for about $195), plus an 8-week course ($395) based on his book Understanding Exposure. I haven't taken the latter, but I have taken a number of the other classes and found them quite useful. I like the format, which consists of a lesson that can be accessed online (usually a PDF file but occasionally video lectures), a weekly assignment, a discussion forum for all students taking the class at the same time, and feedback from the instructor on assignments (and you can see your feedback and that for other students, too).

I haven't looked at it myself, but we gave my sister-in-law this DVD course from the Great Courses: Fundamentals of Photography (Never pay full price for Great Courses. There's usually a good sale and if the course you want isn't on sale now, it will be soon.)


Last edited by frogoutofwater; 12-17-2013 at 03:14 PM.
12-17-2013, 03:27 PM   #20
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I'd say, save time (and trees ), and avoid books.

1. Watch videos on B and H channel on youtube. You can find extremely high quality material there. And it is much faster than reading books.
2. Everyday spend some time looking at the worlds best photographers (or the ones you like) work. Analyze their work, just sit down, pour a glass of something and think what does make their photos so great.
3. Pour another glass of something, but this time look at your photos and think what do you like/dislike in them, what can you do to make them better.
4. Carry a notepad with you, so you could write down all the awesome ideas you get (and usually almost instantly forget). If you don't get awesome ideas, pour another glass of something.
5. Practice! Remember than anything you have read, heard, seen etc is only as valuable as much you use that in practice.

If you do all that, you can reward yourself by pouring another glass of something!
12-17-2013, 04:02 PM   #21
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Looking at my copy of Understanding Exposure, it seems like combining each chapter with an assignment to shoot a representative photo should work. Then look at all the photos taken and see what worked and what didn't. There may be some despair when you see a shot he took in Dubai or France, wondering how to copy it in your town. Worst case, a trip to Dubai!
12-17-2013, 05:13 PM   #22
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I didn't even think about Great Courses! I'll look at their offerings too. There's usually sales codes, etc floating about the homeschool forums.
12-17-2013, 05:22 PM   #23
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Cheap simple starting point to understanding how the controls on your dSLR affect your image:
CameraSim simulates a digital SLR camera - SLR Photography Demystified

Even experienced photographers might find it fun to play with this tool.

12-17-2013, 05:26 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by JimJohnson Quote
Cheap simple starting point to understanding how the controls on your dSLR affect your image:
CameraSim simulates a digital SLR camera - SLR Photography Demystified

Even experienced photographers might find it fun to play with this tool.

Cool link! Thanks!
12-17-2013, 06:12 PM   #25
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Adorama TV on YouTube has a bunch of good videos, each around 10 minutes long. Look for some of Mark Wallace's early videos to cover the basics (most of his newer stuff focuses on portraits; good info but it's more specialized).

Clarification: The Mark Wallace (aka youtube channel "snapfactory") series of over 100 episodes is "Digital Photography 1 on 1". It looks like he started it independently of Adorama TV, and when it took off got sponsored by Adorama. This
is the 1st episode.
is a good video covering some composition basics.

He also has a series of interviews with other professional photographers titled "How'd They Do That?".

Last edited by DeadJohn; 12-17-2013 at 07:50 PM.
12-18-2013, 09:32 AM   #26
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If I may interject some thought... Two books I carry with me and often fall back on, one for many years is the Kodak pocket guide to 35mm film photography it has a lot of useful information on exposure etc., the other is Kodaks New guide pocketbook guide to Digital photography... Both can be found on Amazon.

Also this site I like to reference and also made and keep a paste and cut copy of the exposure guides. Ultimate Exposure Computer
Along with these sites;

Cambridge in Colour - Photography Tutorials & Learning Community
Perspective
http://www.shutterfreaks.com/Tips/Exposure/exposure111.pdf
The Luminous Landscape
12-18-2013, 10:55 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
... a good video covering some composition basics...
There are some good ideas for exercises in here but I do have a bit of a problem with calling it a good beginner education tool. Any good "lesson" should have an explanation of why something is the "best" way to do things. The video is good for ideas on "how" to practice some basic principles but doesn't address "why." For example, he doesn't mention that a failing in many beginner photos is placement of the subject dead center in the frame, which often creates a "dead," static image. We address that by using, among other remedies, the Rule of Thirds to get the subject out of the center. A well known "Sammonism" from Rick Sammon is "Dead Center is Deadly." Telling beginners to use the Rule of Thirds is ok but a real teacher will also tell them why they should.
12-18-2013, 11:19 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by abmj Quote
Telling beginners to use the Rule of Thirds is ok but a real teacher will also tell them why they should.
And a really good teacher will also mention that the 'Rule' of Thirds isn't an absolute. There are exceptions and will give examples of those exceptions.
12-18-2013, 04:56 PM   #29
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^ A ten minute video can't cover everything. It's good, not perfect. Peterson and Kelby books were already mentioned. There's also Joe McNally's book "Life Guide to Digital Photography".
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