(Closed) calling all bees who know a thing or two about PHOTOGRAPHY/CAMERAS!

posted 5 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
Member
11325 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

It might help if you had more specific questions? Whether you go nikon or canon doesn’t really matter– both are basically industry standard. I shoot canon so I don’t know anything about nikons to tell you about that specific camera. 

I guess the most important equipment advice is– invest in lenses. Don’t get a kit lens, buy the camera body separately and invest in better quality lenses. 

As far as technique— light is key. Good light will make or break your photos most of the time. And practice. Lots and lots of practice. Read tutorials, and shoot tens of thousands of frames.

Good luck!

Post # 4
Member
985 posts
Busy bee

I agree with PP. it’s all about the lenses. Kit lenses are fine but you will probably be disappointed that you aren’t getting real super high quality pics. Also, try feeling both canon and Nikon and see which is better in YOUR hands. Reviews are often very biased so it all depends on what feels right to you and if that is the Nikon, then go with that! 

Post # 6
Member
676 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

@wifegoodman:  I bought my first interchangeable lens camera a few months back. I did a lot of research and read a lot of reviews so I could figure out exactly what it was that I wanted in a camera, and what was worth spending a few extra bucks on and what was not worth it. The only thing I wish I had not bothered with was a built in flash… it is useless for the most part. But at least my camera does have a hotshoe for an external. I have a Panasonic DMC-G3 and I love it. It came with a kit lens but since then I have added 4 other lenses, from macro to super zoom. I bought them all on ebay and  saved a ton. I especially like the small size of the camera since it is mirrorless; the downside being that the viewfinder is not instantaneous like a DSLR.

So my first piece of advice is to read some articles and such about camera components so you will know what you are looking at when you are comparing camera specs. Look at expert reviews and look at reviews from real users. Do the same for lenses. Have an idea of what sort of stuff you might want to be photographing (landscapes, portraits, etc) and that will help you pinpoint what lenses you will want to buy (they are very expensive!)

Also make sure you buy a decent bag and lens cleaning brush.

Post # 7
Member
11325 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

     @wifegoodman:  Like I said, I only shoot canon so I have no advice at all on Nikon. But yes, body and lens as two separate purposes for sure. For canon, any of the rebel line will be good. If you see an older model rebel that is still new/available and cheaper, don’t hesitate to buy that instead. I don’t think they’ve really improved THAT much with each iteration, to be honest. If you do go with canon, 50mm is a great place to start for quality photos because even the cheapest 50mm lens (the 50mm 1.8, which people call “nifty fifty”) is really quite good. I have the 50mm 1.4, which is sort of the “better but not yet quite professional” lens of the 50mm offerings, and I absolutely love it. I do feel it is probably worth the money if you have it– but if not the nifty fifty will do just fine for you. 

 

     The only issue with the 50mm is that it takes some getting used to if you’re used to having a built-in zoom. It has feet zoom. In that you have to move your feet to zoom lol. The t2i (and all rebel series) have cropped sensors which you probably don’t care to hear my whole explanation on but basically— any lens you buy you multiply the focal length by 1.6 to find what the lens will LOOK like. That means a 50mm will look like an 80mm lens when on the Rebel– and you might find that lens to be too long (i.e. does not cover enough of a room) for a lot of things– like it is NOT good for group photos for the most part. 

 

     My best recommendation if you’re only going to buy one lens to start is to get a mid-range zoom lens. The 24-85 is quite nice. Or the 28-105 for even more reach. It will feel like more of a natural range of lengths to you, coming off a point and shoot. I use this lens guide a lot when I start to research new lenses— you don’t have to read the whole thing but scroll to the bottom and stay in the mid-range rather than the cheapies: http://photonotes.org/articles/beginner-faq/lenses.html

 

     Also, I totally agree with PP about the flash. Don’t use it. Like, unless you have NO other option. Pump up your ISO and get thee to a window when at all possible– photos done with the pop-up flash are almost always going to be a huge disappointment. 

 

     Which I guess also brings me to the point: Seriously learn how to use it. Learn to shoot in manual, or at a minimum aperture priority. If you buy a dslr and put it on auto, you just wasted your money basically.

 

ETA: Don’t waste your money on a 75-300 initially. If you’re mostly taking pictures of your kid, it will be totally useless. That lens would be good if you wanted to take close up pictures of things far away– like if you wanted to go bird watching or maybe at the zoo or something…. but in your everyday life you will have no real use for it. I say get the body, a good mid-range zoom lens, maybe the 50mm– and then wait a bit to see if you really desire a longer lens before considering a telephoto.

Post # 8
Member
575 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Hey!!! New Mom here too! I just want to say I had the same thoughts but I think I’m going to go with the Compact Camera like Sony. It will give us the best of both worlds because my husband can use it as a point and shoot, and I can experment more. I have found a lot of good blogs through pinterest better explaining aperture, shutter speed, lighting, and more. I would definitely look on there for some good tutorials. I used my friend’s the other day and you will be so happy with the upgrade!! I miss so many smiles because my shutter speed isn’t fast enough. 

Good luck!! Also wrapping paper= backdrop!!! It works great!

Post # 9
Member
1848 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2015
Post # 11
Member
347 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@wifegoodman – I too, wanted to learn how to use a camera that was better and had more flexablity than my point and shoot.  For Christmas, I got the Nikon 5100 and I LOVE it.  I couldn’t really tell you what the differences between all the different Nikons, and as far as brands go (through my research), Canon is just as good. 

In my opinion, I wouldn’t spend a lot of money on lens right away.  I have the kit that Best Buy sold and I’m happy with it.  As I play with the camera, I learn more about it, learn more about lens and what they all can do.  I wasn’t trying to become pro at taking pictures, so spending lots of money upfront wasn’t needed.  I just wanted to learn the Manual setting!

As for learning, I have read probably every blog and tip on the internet! ha ha!!  I also bought Photoshop Elements (found it cheap – $40 through amazon) so that I could learn to edit pictures.  Here is my Pinterest page for everything I have found while teaching myself that you may enjoy: http://pinterest.com/ashley1001/photography-tips-photoshop/

Here are two pictures that I have taken with my camera (which I think the quality is just fine for my needs even though it’s not a fancy lens) 

This picture I just LOVE – my dog!  I used Photoshop Elements to adjust this one – but still, the picture straight out of the camera was just as great!

 

Post # 13
Member
347 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

wifegoodman – Photoshop Elements is not the FULL photoshop (which does cost major $$$).  Even though it doesn’t have all the features, it’s a great program that (in my opinion) does a lot!

Post # 14
Member
1070 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I have the Canon T1i which is the older model of T2i. I love it. The HD video has to be one of my favorite aspects. DO NOT forget how important video will be when looking into a camera.

Agreed with the alternative lens. I would recommend the Macro lens as well.

Insteaed of Photoshop, I use GIMP which is FREE downloadable software. It has all the same basic functions of photoshop. I’m no professional photog, so it’s good enough for me.

Free download here

Having photo editing software is really helpful to those, like me, who can’t always get that perfect raw image.

Good luck!

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