November 27, 2014, 10:04:27 AM

Author Topic: What do you recommend for beginner?  (Read 16683 times)

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • **********
  • Posts: 14973
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2011, 10:15:29 AM »
I think there is something very wrong with the fact that beginners on a budget learn photography these days in a cropped format where all the standards and numbers are off.

I'm not sure this matters, except that we often use FF equivalents for comparison purposes.  In the film days, 'pros' used MF cameras, and numbers were 'off' for them.  Ultimately, though, the principles of composition and light are still the most important.

On a related topic, do you advocate that beginners start their post-processing the way I learned it (and probably you as well)...when 'dodge' and 'burn' weren't tools you clicked in Photoshop, but were cards and wands waved around in a darkroom?   :P
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

canon rumors FORUM

Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2011, 10:15:29 AM »

Rocky

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 649
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #16 on: April 12, 2011, 12:20:45 PM »
You're right. You're nuts!  ;D

I see your point, however, at least where I live, finding film and someone to do development of it is a) hard b) very costly. Almost no one has film for sale any more, only specialist stores and they charge you in blood for it. The gear may be cheap, but not using it.

It's close to using checks, I don't think I've seen a check since the late 80's.

See, I knew somebody would call me nuts ;-) And probably rightly so. And actually, I see checks all the time - and find that equally ridiculous.

And unfortunately, you are right about the limits in film availability, places that process (or what that call processing these days...), the cost, and the pretty dismal output you get from all negatives being cheaply scanned and send to one of these horrible printers these days. None of this comes even close to how things used to be.

BUT: I still think you learn a lot about taking pictures. With a few rolls of film in your bag at 36 exposures a pop you think at least twice before pulling the trigger given the cost and complications. If you can translate that later into the digital world I personally think it's an exercise well worth the effort. Very disciplined and determined people can do this maybe right away with a digital SLR.

The other part I was getting at is how wrong it is that we are still being force fed the notion that "full frame" is only for pros and snobby rich people. I think there is something very wrong with the fact that beginners on a budget learn photography these days in a cropped format where all the standards and numbers are off. I know, people (rightly) said that also when "35mm" became widely used. It is like checks in that sense. And I'm obviously old.

 
Both of you have apoint. I would suggest the following approach.
Get a used 40D or even 20D with a cheap used 17-55mm lens.  That will allow you to explore the DSLR and learn the technique with mininal cost.  There is another catch about people moving from point and shoot (or small camera) to DSLR. Some people may not be able to get use to the bulk and  weight of the 'New" DSLR. I have at least two friends are having their DSLR sitting in the closet for the same reason.  I do not quite understand abour the statement of "all numbers are off for the crop snesor". Are you refering  to the DOF or something else. Anyway. you can lean a lot about photography with a cheap used DSLR sysytem. Just do not form a habbit of clicking without thinking.

7enderbender

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 635
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2011, 02:20:43 PM »


 
Both of you have apoint. I would suggest the following approach.
Get a used 40D or even 20D with a cheap used 17-55mm lens.  That will allow you to explore the DSLR and learn the technique with mininal cost.  There is another catch about people moving from point and shoot (or small camera) to DSLR. Some people may not be able to get use to the bulk and  weight of the 'New" DSLR. I have at least two friends are having their DSLR sitting in the closet for the same reason.  I do not quite understand abour the statement of "all numbers are off for the crop snesor". Are you refering  to the DOF or something else. Anyway. you can lean a lot about photography with a cheap used DSLR sysytem. Just do not form a habbit of clicking without thinking.
[/quote]

I agree with you and these are most of the points I was getting at with my outlandish suggestion. Weight and size of such cameras being one concern. And yes, I was referring to the DOF difference (probably a new experience for people coming from P&S anyway) and also the fact that focal length in fact has a factor on on cropped sensors. No big deal really.

But I think starting with the kind of used models you suggest is certainly a viable approach. I would even consider a simple prime instead of one of those entry level zooms, like a basic relatively fast 35mm lens (on cropped). I still love the exercise at times of just taking my camera and a 50mm lens and nothing else.
5DII - 50L - 135L - 200 2.8L - 24-105 - 580EXII - 430EXII - FD 500/8 - AE1-p - bag full of FD lenses

branden

  • Guest
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #18 on: April 13, 2011, 02:29:29 AM »
I honestly believe the entry level Digital Rebel is the best place for beginners to start. It offers basic versions of all the digital photography technologies in a simple, cheap, and easy to use manner. It comes with a basic lens that takes you through all the standard focal lengths, and adding a EF-S 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS takes you up into the super-telephoto range for cheap, with a matching lens quality. This is where I started years ago, and this is still today how Canon has designed their lineup, and by my estimation they've put a lot on the line betting this is the best starting place. An EOS body is a very versatile base that can be used for almost all types of photography.

I do understand your point about shooting film, which is where I started way back in high school. But I also remember hating it, and being frustrated by the amount of time and effort that went into developing a crappy image. Digital allows a photographer to punch out photos extremely quickly, which allows the photographer to experiment and adapt much, much quicker. Some would say this automation and instant results will result in not really learning photography basics, but those people probably wouldn't have had the patience for film in the first place.

As for your comments regarding the size and weight of SLRs, I don't know, there are a lot of film and digital SLRs out there, and I only have four of them, but both my film SLRs are significantly lighter and smaller than my digitals.

ssbuchanan

  • Guest
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #19 on: April 13, 2011, 04:13:08 AM »
A beginner should start with a 1D with a fast lens. Why? Well, you're going to spend less money starting with that than buying a 550D, growing out of it, buying a 70D, growing out of it, buying a 5DMkV, growing out of it, then finally getting the 1D. You could've just started with the 1D in the first place :P

Same idea for lenses - nobody wants the cheap kit lenses, so you'll get no resale, so you may as well start with L lenses.

akiskev

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 326
    • View Profile
    • My flickr gallery
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #20 on: April 13, 2011, 09:21:17 AM »
Get the 550d or the 600d with a decent lens and you will be fine!!!
Flickr | Canon EOS 3 | Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
EF 17-40mm f/4L | EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS | EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS | EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L
Zeiss 35mm f/2.4 | Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 | Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 | Zeiss 200mm f/2.8 | Zeiss 80-200 f/4

endigo

  • Guest
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2011, 11:14:50 AM »
It depends.

If you are not sure if this hobby is something that you want to spend thousands of dollars on, then the 600D is a fine camera and will take you a long way.

If you are serious about entering this hobby, and you are confident that you will continue to enjoy this hobby for a long time, then I recommend that you go down the list of Canon cameras (This is a Canon forum) and imagine buying each camera, when the price starts to hurt, buy that camera. Be sure to keep the box, and all of it's contents in good condition. If you later decide that the camera is just collecting dust, the upper end cameras do hold their value for several years.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2011, 11:14:50 AM »

skitron

  • Canon 7D MK II
  • *****
  • Posts: 513
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2011, 11:57:26 AM »
Just went down this road for my niece...used XTi with kit lens $320. I've seen what that body can crank out with L glass and it is impressive. So if she shows promise I'll get her a couple of the well regarded non-L primes and she'll have no barrier due to equipment for a good while...and I'm not out much coin.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2011, 12:03:51 PM by skitron »
5D3, 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, 100L, 24-105L, Sigma 50/1.4 DG, Canon TC 1.4x III

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • **********
  • Posts: 14973
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #23 on: April 13, 2011, 12:46:18 PM »
If you later decide that the camera is just collecting dust, the upper end cameras do hold their value for several years.

Yes, if you go high enough.  But that really means $2500 for the 5DII, which typically goes for $2000-2200 on the used market, meaning a depreciation of 12-20%.  There are a few 7D's on my local Craigslist for $1000-1200 - that's a loss of 30-40%.  And those are for current cameras - once a new version comes out, used prices drop.  Sure, you can sell an original 5D for ~$1000, but when new that body was more expensive than the 5DII.  That's a main reason the lower-end cameras don't hold value - new models come out much more frequently. 

I think if you are unsure if this is the hobby for you, get a used dSLR - the 50D or even 40D would be a good choice there.  Buy a good lens (or two). 
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

foto

  • Guest
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #24 on: April 13, 2011, 05:13:40 PM »
I am also a beginner and got the 60D. I took some pictures outdoors and indoors. I was dissapointed with my indoor pictures. Can anyone advise me what is worth buying, maybe some dvd or book to improve my skills in taking pictures?

CR Backup Admin

  • Administrator
  • 1D Mark IV
  • *****
  • Posts: 807
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #25 on: April 13, 2011, 05:47:54 PM »
I am also a beginner and got the 60D. I took some pictures outdoors and indoors. I was dissapointed with my indoor pictures. Can anyone advise me what is worth buying, maybe some dvd or book to improve my skills in taking pictures?

Were you using the onboard flash?  Photography is about light, so it is important to get the light right, and the camera will do a excellent job.  Too little light usually results in the camera lowering the shutter speed, and getting a blur in the photos.

I can recommend this web site for training, its done by a pro who knows his stuff.  It is not for total newbies, but you likely know enough.  They have a 60D specific course.  They also have a beginner course, but its a  massive 11 session course.

You can see the indroduction online free.  You can also download the course and save it to a DVD for future reference.
http://www.creativelive.com/courses/   $50.00

K3nt

  • Canon 70D
  • ****
  • Posts: 269
  • "No good photo goes unnoticed!"
    • View Profile
    • Flickr
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #26 on: April 14, 2011, 02:00:24 AM »
As a beginner I was trying to get my head around this whole DSLR thing too and I found this set to be very good:
Scott Kelby's Digital Photography Boxed Set: v. 1, 2 & 3

His humour is sometimes a bit, well, dry but he explains things in a very understandably way without getting too technical. I then got a much more technical book to follow up, but what a great start. Now I know what aperture and shutter speed to use when, how I use my flash (430EX II) etc... Good stuff.
Flickr

Canon EOS 7D * 10-22mm EF-S * 50mm f/1.4 * 70-20mm f/2.8L IS USM MkII * Nissin 866Di MkII * 430EXII + accessories

ronderick

  • Canon 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 400
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2011, 04:45:38 AM »
Well, I started my exploration with Kelby's Digital Photography books too (I think it was volume 2).

It's good for people who wants to be spared of the basic "Intro to Photography 101" approach. There's some pretty direct concept in the book which I still use (for example, the three key factors of landscape photography - tripod, wired release, and mirror lockup). Of course, those concepts could found on other books, but I just like the way the author puts all of those in simple language and quickly accessible.

However, there's one drawback: he's a Nikon shooter! That's blasephemy! :P
Canon EOS 1D MKIV, EF 24-105mm F/4L, EF 70-200mm F/2.8L, TS-E 17mm F/4L, EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
FujiFilm FinePix X100

canon rumors FORUM

Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2011, 04:45:38 AM »

Macadameane

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 209
    • View Profile
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #28 on: April 14, 2011, 08:55:03 AM »
I am also a beginner and got the 60D. I took some pictures outdoors and indoors. I was dissapointed with my indoor pictures. Can anyone advise me what is worth buying, maybe some dvd or book to improve my skills in taking pictures?

I don't know much about using high end flashes, but you could probably use a faster lens.  The 50mm 1.8 is a cheap fast lens that is relatively sharp and gets good reviews (though the build quality is cheap).

Having a faster lens will allow you to crank the ISO lower and get pictures that are less noisy.  Additionally, shoot RAW and use a gray card.  With the gray card you can get the white balance just right.  There is no good way for the camera to detect WB, but it tries to guess.  Under Tungsten lights, this can be problematic.  If you don't have a gray card (or a pretty accurate gray object), just adjust the white balance on the computer until it looks better.

I need to get a gray card, but in the meantime, I have a Sketchers shoe box with a medium gray surface that works great.

K3nt

  • Canon 70D
  • ****
  • Posts: 269
  • "No good photo goes unnoticed!"
    • View Profile
    • Flickr
Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2011, 09:06:28 AM »
However, there's one drawback: he's a Nikon shooter! That's blasephemy! :P

I agree, that was the biggest letdown..  :D But, seriously... Good books, easily accessible. Just the other night I needed to quickly refresh what settings I needed to use when taking a shot of the moon and it took me less than a minute and I was ready. I did a comparison to one of the 500 page-monster books I have, took me about 10 minutes to find the location and the it rambled on about a bunch of technicalities, all I wanted was a suggested shutter and aperture.  :D
The monster-book is great in explaining the actual workings of stuff, but for quickly finding suggested settings it is not the right place.
Flickr

Canon EOS 7D * 10-22mm EF-S * 50mm f/1.4 * 70-20mm f/2.8L IS USM MkII * Nissin 866Di MkII * 430EXII + accessories

canon rumors FORUM

Re: What do you recommend for beginner?
« Reply #29 on: April 14, 2011, 09:06:28 AM »