I can't tell you how many tasks i have to accomplish, but there is always time for myself and creating this article is a relief and a big break from every day's work.
Well its a photography community so i'll try not to spend your time reading garbage.
The main subject? "QUALITY"
Now lets take a break and empty our heads out of everything and keep only that word in mind. Quality.!
We all seek for it, we all need it, we all expect to have it.
actually it goes all the way around. Quality is everywhere. Waiting to be picked, learned, and customized.
I see many new photographers blaming their equipment or time, leaving theirselves out.
No, it doesn't have to be full frame, you don't have to spent a fortune on big lenses and make trips to exotic places with your muscle gear flashing around and expecting to have quality pictures.. No way.
Buy the best car in the world but can you drive it?
Buy the best oven or kitchen but can you cook with it?
Buy the best mobile phone, do you know its capabilities, is it gonna offer more than you want?
Buy the best computer and put tons of software in it, but can you work with it?
So all the above leads to the question: Do you know what you want?
It all starts with us, in us. Be wise, get a grip and find your actual needs, the ones that will put a smile on your face and not a positive vote in your ego. Get whatever you need. You know your needs!!! Thats basis! There are categories in equipment. You can't buy a Ferrari and go to your village off road, instead buy a 4x4 vehicle!
Now i'll spare the "lecture" i do love you all, and bla bla bla hahha, i'll give you some examples on my early days with photography and what is that i'm hunting for that keeps my energy up, puts a smile on me and less worries which lead to a better psychical health in the next 10 following tips.
Here are some suggestions, (i could say rules, but i don't like that word and neither do you, unless you are a sheep that you have to obey).
1. Find out which category of photos you like most. Landscapes/travelling, wedding, nature, macro, still life, etc...
2. After picking a category, start to study a picture. Try to imagine HOW did this picture was made (i ain't gonna say take. "Taking" pictures is a meaning for outdated dinosaurs who think that the world stopped after clicking on their old film camera. Well history is fun, we all know Bresson, or Ansel Adams and these guys in their days making masterpieces, but life goes on and so are the needs, the equipment, techniques, ideas, and whatever makes us happy that comes from us and not out of history and what other people say.)
Get a camera, borrow a camera from a friend, or go out with a friend which is fun. Screw the coffee or a midnight drink, go and create something for you and learn from it!
4. DON'T BUY EXPENSIVE GEAR unless you really know how to use it and where to use it. 500px lacks of editorial layout where you can put your photos in between the text, but check some of my pictures below this article.
There all taken back in 2006 with an outdated equipment nowdays, or should i say an ancient dinosaur.
However there are usable, they made me happy then, their still making me happy by turning back time remembering how i felt behind the camera then, and i collect twice the happiness today knowing that i made a shot then which really worth something today. Wow that sentence is endless. lets do it again shall we?
- Happy then, Happy now. :D
Its personal. I don't care about contests or critiques and people, i do photography for me. And i share some thoughts and suggestions but not rules!
now where was i?
5. This step has to do with you. So now you know:
a) if you like the idea on making pictures,
b) if you're good at it and you please your self,
c) if you know what it takes to create a picture (this includes post processing as well. We will talk into that as well),
d) if you wanna engage with the idea of photography and start creating your own "world" behind the glass.
Photography is freedom, its a new world, its a kind of communication, its personal, its you. You may see a landscape and bring it over to public, but the public sees you like a transparent glass. So if you want to communicate with the public, the world will read you about how enthusiast, gifted, clever, harmonic, or lazy, shallow, egoist, and pain in the ass which might be not as bad after all :)
6. Buy the RIGHT equipment that suits your needs.
- Vacation: buy a cheap compact with lithium battery not more than 100$
- Trekking: buy something lightweight. You'll carry your body, and lots of other equipment and one extra kilo is weighted like a ton on walking over the hill. Buy a crop body and a few sharp and best value for money lenses and use f/8 f/10, which is optimal.
- Wedding: buy a FF camera and some fast aperture lenses. Churches and indoor photography suffers from low light so you need a good sensor and a fast lens to GRAB all the light its available for.
- Birds/Sports/Action: buy a fast camera and big lenses in order to be in a distance to capture the birds in all phases.
7. nooooo we're not over.. alright you took a couple of pictures, you bought equipment, and now what?
FIND TIME!!! time is critical, if you don't have time for it, then why bother?
8. PRACTICE.. ok you have the will and the time to make pictures. Good! Check out on the weather conditions, seasons, light, amount of light, type of light, time of day, combine with your subject, put your self into it. DONT COPY somebody else's idea, find your own. If you don't know where to get an idea, do it wrong, then learn from it.
NOT EVERY PICTURE IS A MASTERPIECE, BUT EVERY PICTURE IS USEFUL EITHER IS GOOD OR TRASH.
9. REPEAT THE 8 STEP OVER AND OVER
10. Smile. thats it.. picture taken :)
** The following pictures were taken with an old and outdated Canon EOS 350D (you can find it somewhere between $100 and $150) and a bunch of lenses, such as my favorite 10-22 which i still use today, a cheap kit 18-55 II which doesn't work any more, and a good old Sigma 18-200 OS which i sold to a good friend of mine.
I still use that camera as a backup. Needed it in Paros island (great Greek Aegean island) back in 2011 when my other camera's SD memory filled up. Its the last picture of the set, and there was no way i'd loose this one even if i had to put a film in a tin with a tiny hole (pinhole camera) to take the magic of it.