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      11-26-2015, 07:50 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
I recommend and use the EF 70-200mm f/4L IS.
Looked this up on Amazon and it costs $1,100+!
That is more than I want to spend on a lens for now
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      11-26-2015, 07:53 AM   #46
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Can some of you more experienced photographers direct me with composition? Is this something that I just "learn" as I take more pictures? What can I do to improve?
Someone suggested taking photography classes.. I guess I should start there.
I've started out with a point and shoot camera back 5 years ago and started to take interest in photography.. I purchased my first SLR camera ( canon XSI ) and have only shot mostly in auto mode.. When I should have used manual or AP or TV mode. I started to get bored and lost interest because I wasn't improving. Recently I sold my aged XSI and got the 70D with kit lens.

I also have a canon EF-S 55-250mm lens with f/4.0 - 5.6 telephoto lens that I bought long ago but have not really used it much.

Should I invest in a canon 50 mm f/1.8 fixed focal length lens? I can get one from Amazon for $110! All the pictures in this thread were shot with my kit lens - Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 EF-S IS STM Lens.

Thanks
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      11-26-2015, 10:13 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Can some of you more experienced photographers direct me with composition? Is this something that I just "learn" as I take more pictures? What can I do to improve?
Someone suggested taking photography classes.. I guess I should start there.
I've started out with a point and shoot camera back 5 years ago and started to take interest in photography.. I purchased my first SLR camera ( canon XSI ) and have only shot mostly in auto mode.. When I should have used manual or AP or TV mode. I started to get bored and lost interest because I wasn't improving. Recently I sold my aged XSI and got the 70D with kit lens.

I also have a canon EF-S 55-250mm lens with f/4.0 - 5.6 telephoto lens that I bought long ago but have not really used it much.

Should I invest in a canon 50 mm f/1.8 fixed focal length lens? I can get one from Amazon for $110! All the pictures in this thread were shot with my kit lens - Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 EF-S IS STM Lens.

Thanks
Rule of thirds is a good starting point. Interesting perspective makes for good composition. As an example: Taking auto pictures from a kneeling position looks more attractive than at the usual standing height. That slight perspective change adds interest. Carry it over to other subjects as well.
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      11-26-2015, 11:54 AM   #48
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Hey man,

Check this new thread out.
http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1198907

Use the longest end of whatever zoom you have and try to recreate some of these shots. You won't get the lighting or the colors right since these were done at a specific time of day and with skilled editing, but focus on composition.

You'll notice most of the height is very low to the ground so you are looking at the car straight on, not top down. You'll also notice simple backgrounds. You'll also see the angles. Some straight on, others from more of an angle. Notice also the position of the car within the frame. Instead of always in the middle, some version of the rule of thirds helps to create a bit of dynamics to the image.

After you get a few of these down start playing around with Aperture Priority first and Shutter Priorirty second. Full manual is last.
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      11-26-2015, 12:04 PM   #49
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^^ those are some good examples of what / how I want to shoot. Can I achieve those with a 50mm lens?
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      11-26-2015, 12:11 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Can some of you more experienced photographers direct me with composition? Is this something that I just "learn" as I take more pictures? What can I do to improve?
Someone suggested taking photography classes.. I guess I should start there.
For a general guide and exercises and tip, I recommend Digital Photography School at:

http://digital-photography-school.com/

I see that Rule Of Thirds has been mentioned. As you consider that, also read about The Golden Ratio. Rule of Thirds is a simplification of The Golden Ratio. I have a grid in my viewfinder that has me thinking about Golden Ratio, also, when I process, I keep a grid of thirds on the screen.

Anyway, get on the DPS email list and look through their archives. Thinking about composition as you shoot is an important first step.

Some people like to plan an image and the execute. I like to study the subject on the fly and keep altering my perspective to see if I can strengthen the image. Do this enough and then, occasionally, I balanced image will just present itself and you're ready to grab it.

I couldn't stage the following image, but years of constantly thinking about composition, knowing my camera well enough to have it set properly, all conspired to have me ready when the opportunity presented itself:

Valobra - Street Scene by David Stephens, on Flickr

Shoot lots, but always be thinking.
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      11-26-2015, 12:18 PM   #51
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Quote:
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^^ those are some good examples of what / how I want to shoot. Can I achieve those with a 50mm lens?
Yes.
He was using a 105mm F2.8 but the 50 F1.8 will give a similar depth of field for isolating your subject.


Here are a couple Ive taken with the 50 F1.8
RX-7 at Autumn by -mik3ymomo-
E-Type Jaguar by -mik3ymomo-
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      11-26-2015, 01:39 PM   #52
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Great examples Mike.

Note the great light in both examples, the really low perspective with the Mazda, the sky reflections on the Jag, the indirect light on both, the fall BG on the Mazda, the OOF industrial BG in complementing color for the jag. Using a 50mm, he has to have an interesting BG or get closer to the car.

Mike understood his lens, understood composition and put them to good use.

When I use my zooms, I think, "tight or wide" and that's dictated by the strength of the BG. The stronger the BG, the wider I'll go, without Letting the main subject get too insignificant.

Dave
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      11-26-2015, 05:25 PM   #53
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Here's a post from DPS about portrait photography, but read on down to the discussion and illustration of the Golden Ratio.

http://digital-photography-school.co...oor-portraits/
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      11-26-2015, 07:27 PM   #54
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Dave has the right idea. He is showing you there is info online explaining composition. In actuality in today's digital age everything is online for the taking. I am completely self taught from practice and reading online.
I am in no way an expert but I have been trying for about 10 years to get better at Photography.

I was not good when I started. And by not good I mean I was awful. It's just something you need to learn and practice. It's like learning to play guitar. No one picks it and plays. It takes effort and ambition and eventually you get better.

The tips in that article are very good. I rarely shoot people but those tips work.

I shot this one with a 200mm F2 VRII lens. Shot wide open at F2
See her face is in a different direction than her body? Also the depth of field is shallow and isolated the subject? The 50mm F1.8, 85 f1.8 will also accomplish this to a degree. More so their F1.4 counterparts but you can get the effect also with the F1.8 versions.
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      11-26-2015, 07:47 PM   #55
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Quote:
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Looked this up on Amazon and it costs $1,100+!
That is more than I want to spend on a lens for now
A lot of the really nice lenses, particularly the best zoom lenses are in that price range.
The 70-200 is on the short list of zooms I would also recommend. I use zooms a lot too and the 24-70 F2.8 is my most used lens. It just depends what you primarily shoot.

I pushed the 50mm for a couple reasons and the biggest one is price. It's the best lens for the money that Nikon or Canon make. Anyone serious about photography should own one regardless of your budget.

I own a lot of lenses and most are expensive and I try not to ever recommend the most expensive lenses to people that are beginners. It tends to dissuade them and I want to see them get into the hobby and make some nice images; not just spend a bunch of money for gear they are not sure how to utilize yet.
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      11-27-2015, 01:05 PM   #56
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Thanks guys for the tips.. I've just purchased the 50mm canon lens ( newer version ) I guess the L version is suppose to be a better lens? I actually understand the rule of thirds but now that I think about it.. I don't really think about my shots and how I picture the frame to be. I just go in a start shooting since the camera is digital and I don't worry about having to process the film like the old days. I guess I should start to plan my shots, think about the shot and how I would like it to come out and have a lot of patience.

One thing I can't still grasp is there is all these different types of lens and I understand the concept of a Zoom, macro, and fish eye lens / wide angle lens.. but I don't understand why there are different mm lens. For instance my kit lens 18-135mm would cover the 50mm lens that I just purchase right? Why would I need different lens that fall into the 18-135mm range?
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      11-27-2015, 01:32 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Thanks guys for the tips.. I've just purchased the 50mm canon lens ( newer version ) I guess the L version is suppose to be a better lens? I actually understand the rule of thirds but now that I think about it.. I don't really think about my shots and how I picture the frame to be. I just go in a start shooting since the camera is digital and I don't worry about having to process the film like the old days. I guess I should start to plan my shots, think about the shot and how I would like it to come out and have a lot of patience.

One thing I can't still grasp is there is all these different types of lens and I understand the concept of a Zoom, macro, and fish eye lens / wide angle lens.. but I don't understand why there are different mm lens. For instance my kit lens 18-135mm would cover the 50mm lens that I just purchase right? Why would I need different lens that fall into the 18-135mm range?
That was my point. You don't need a prime lens when you've got a zoom that covers the focal length, EXCEPT when you need a really large aperture to limit DOF. That can be especially true when shooting portraits or in car photography. Note in Mike's pix that he's got portions of either the FG or BG OOF.

I think you're likely to notice improved quality between your 50mm and your kit zoom. That's not so true with L-series zooms, but I'm hoping that you'll experience the impact that a high quality lens can have. Unfortunately, then you'll be addicted to the song of the L-series and nothing else will do. Oh well, we'll worry about that when it happens.

Even with your primes, be sure to use Digital Lens Optimization when you convert your images from Raw. It'll make every image look sharper.

Don't rely on post processing to do all your framing. You have to get the important elements in the in-camera shot. I'll purposely allow a little room around a subject so that I can do a final edit. I take shots knowing that I'll crop 2:1 or 5:2, but I try to picture the final image as I take the in-camera. Still, you need to think of the final shot as you take the original shot.

Dave
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      11-27-2015, 06:57 PM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
One thing I can't still grasp is there is all these different types of lens and I understand the concept of a Zoom, macro, and fish eye lens / wide angle lens.. but I don't understand why there are different mm lens. For instance my kit lens 18-135mm would cover the 50mm lens that I just purchase right? Why would I need different lens that fall into the 18-135mm range?
Well first off Zooms have to make compromises so they can focus the image through several glass elements at differing focal lengths. Also most consumer models have varying Apretures through the zoom range and they are bigger and heavier than Primes.
Primes are what we call fixed focal length NON zoom lenses like the 50mm you bought.

They are small and light and have excellent image quality and large Apretures. The lens you ordered is a 50mm and never moves from 50mm so the glass elements can be optimized for that focal length meaning sharp images.

You also won't see a zoom lens with an F1.4 or F1.8 Apreture. They get close like with the 70-200 F2.8 but it's big and heavy and it's over $2k.
Don't get me wrong. You will eventually want one, we just aren't there yet.

Once you start using the good stuff you won't want to go back.

And yes plan your shots. I think about what I want my viewers to see in the photo I am making. By doing that it helps me decide where I focus and what Apreture I will set the camera at and how close and what angle I'm at.

I shot this doing exactly that. I knew what I wanted it to look like and made it happen.
CYM FD3S RX-7 R1 by -mik3ymomo-
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      11-27-2015, 07:45 PM   #59
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Thanks again! I just followed you on Flickr and you have some amazing photos. I hope to learn as much as I can. Thanks again for all the help and tips.
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      11-27-2015, 09:50 PM   #60
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Consider carrying a 15mm, a 24mm, a 40mm, a 80mm, a 135mm, a 200mm, etc. and compare that to carrying a 15mm, a 24-105mm and a 70-200mm. With L-series and digital lens optimization there's no drop in IQ.

Carrying the lenses is half the battle. Switching from one lens to another is a pain and you'll find yourself avoiding going to the best focal length because it'll require a lens change. Of course, you could do like me and carry two bodies and four lenses...
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      11-27-2015, 09:54 PM   #61
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Wouldn't the 50mm sort of be the "one lens" to carry for more shots as long as your not taking pictures of wildlife that requires to zoom in or sports. With the 50mm you can as others have indicated use your feet to replace the zoom function?
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      11-27-2015, 10:02 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Wouldn't the 50mm sort of be the "one lens" to carry for more shots as long as your not taking pictures of wildlife that requires to zoom in or sports. With the 50mm you can as others have indicated use your feet to replace the zoom function?
Actually 24-70mm or a 24-105mm would cover way more situations than a 50mm. Your kit zoom will cover more situations, but at some sacrifice to image quality.

Work with you 50mm and switch between it and the zoom. I suspect that you'll notice better IQ with the 50mm when you look at 100%. My walk-around lens is a 24-105mm f/4 IS, which has excellent IQ. I own a 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens, but almost never use it because it's too limiting. I use it when I'm shooting Milkyway shots and need a larger aperture.

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      11-27-2015, 10:13 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
Actually 24-70mm or a 24-105mm would cover way more situations than a 50mm. Your kit zoom will cover more situations, but at some sacrifice to image quality.

Work with you 50mm and switch between it and the zoom. I suspect that you'll notice better IQ with the 50mm when you look at 100%. My walk-around lens is a 24-105mm f/4 IS, which has excellent IQ. I own a 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens, but almost never use it because it's too limiting. I use it when I'm shooting Milkyway shots and need a larger aperture.

Dave
Well that is my understanding that the prime would give a better IQ over the zoom lens...

On the other thread people are suggesting a 35mm f 1.8 http://f15.bimmerpost.com/forums/sho....php?t=1172520
Perhaps I should get the 35mm instead?
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      11-27-2015, 10:24 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Well that is my understanding that the prime would give a better IQ over the zoom lens...

On the other thread people are suggesting a 35mm f 1.8 http://f15.bimmerpost.com/forums/sho....php?t=1172520
Perhaps I should get the 35mm instead?
I high quality prime lens is going to blow away your cheap kit zoom. L-series zooms cost way more than your kit and will often match the IQ of primes. They very from expensive to very expensive. Go ahead and get a 35mm, 40mm or 50mm of decent quality to experience it. After that, start thinking about a good, used L-series zoom to replace your kit zoom.

If you've got a crop-sensor body, then 35 to 40mm is closure to a "normal" view. On a full-frame camera, the 50mm is what you'll want.

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      11-27-2015, 10:29 PM   #65
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I high quality prime lens is going to blow away your cheap kit zoom. L-series zooms cost way more than your kit and will often match the IQ of primes. They very from expensive to very expensive. Go ahead and get a 35mm, 40mm or 50mm of decent quality to experience it. After that, start thinking about a good, used L-series zoom to replace your kit zoom.

If you've got a crop-sensor body, then 35 to 40mm is closure to a "normal" view. On a full-frame camera, the 50mm is what you'll want.

Dave
I have Canon 70D.. not sure if that is considered crop-sensor body I understand that the L series lens is very expensive and provide excellent IQ. Something that I can not afford at the moment. So I will stick with the standard prime lens
Thanks for answering and having patience with a new I appreciate your responses!
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      11-27-2015, 10:39 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
I have Canon 70D.. not sure if that is considered crop-sensor body I understand that the L series lens is very expensive and provide excellent IQ. Something that I can not afford at the moment. So I will stick with the standard prime lens
Thanks for answering and having patience with a new I appreciate your responses!
Yes, the 70D is an excellent crop-sensor body. You'll want at 35 or 40mm for that, not a 50mm, but it will not matter a whole bunch. You can shop for price vs. quality. Don't get too carried away with an extremely wide aperture, but get at least f/2.8.

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