Saturday, July 30, 2011

Learning About My Camera

If you remember, back in December my husband bought me a new toy. Since that time I've taken a class and gotten a new lens. I will also be in the Dominican Republic in two weeks photographing my cousin Carrie's wedding.

Ever since I took the photography class in May, I have absolutely disliked 90% of the shots I have taken but I was determined not to put my camera back into Auto. The class I took, the instructor basically told us to put our camera in Aperture Priority and stay there. Of course at first I didn't like what I was getting because of my lens. I purchased a 50mm 1.8 G and it seemed to help but I still wasn't happy.

This week I bribed my friend Jessica from White Harvest Photography with a day at the pool if she would help me out and give me tips on wedding photography. Not only is she an amazing photographer but she is an amazing teacher as well. She taught me how to shoot in Manual and gave me a lot of great tips.

Now the key is to practice before I leave. This evening I was watching my 1 year old niece, so I took my 4 kids and my niece outside to practice. I had a lot of fun and wanted to show you some of what I caught. I did learn that if I want to photograph toddlers I need to get faster with my camera. They do not stay still and they do not want to look at you.

Besides cropping these photos a little I didn't do any editing.

I also experimented with my continuous setting and had a lot of fun with that. Next week I will share them with you.


Rachael said...

Isn't photography never stop learning. I also love that you can have fun with the pics after you take them too.. Do you have Lightroom or Photoshop? You can play with a lot of fun effects too. You're doing great...just keeep practicing. Also, lighting makes a big difference too. Pictures looks best taken earlier or later in the day...face people towards the light source even when in the shade. Play with your focus points too. What kind of camera do you have again? Have you gotten the Unmanual from It's the best explanation I've ever had for using manual mode. Have fun with it and enjoy it...

Melissa said...

Thanks Rachael. I didn't get the Unmanual and I don't have a good editing program yet. It's on my wishlist. I use Picasa, so I can mess with color some and do a few things but not as much as I could do with Lightroom.

Rachael said...

I was able to get Lightroom for a lot less by going to Since my husband is a teacher I can get discounted software that way. Maybe you know a teacher that could help you out :) Otherwise I know people that buy Photoshop or Lightroom on Ebay. I love being able to work with RAW images since when editing it keeps your picture more clear than working from a jpeg file. (If that makes sense to you?) You need an editing program that can work with RAW though and Picasa won't do that for you. Also, I've learned when saving pics in Picasa it doesn't keep them at full resolution so don't use it as a backup for your photos they won't print the same. If you ever have any questions feel free to email me. I've had lots of help from other photog friends and I really appreciated it. So if I can answer any questions for you please let me know. Have fun at the wedding. I took pics for a friends wedding a week after I got my camera...hardly knew how to use it and she loved them and it was all done in "Program" mode with a cheap external flash. I was so nervous. It was a small wedding so it worked out well. Have fun!

Angie said...

I have been into photography for years. My husband always says I have a VERY expensive hobby which is very true. By the time I bought lenses, filters, external flash etc.. I am sure we spent a fortune but the benefits far exceed the cost. I just think of the history of life my children will have because of my love of the camera :)

Children, when they are young, are always ready to model when they see the camera out.

Loved your photos.. give the heart of your children! So much fun!

Angie Sellers

Melissa said...

Thanks Angie! It is an expensive hobby.....but I agree completely worth every penny!