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Discussion in 'LORD' started by Lord Tim, Dec 25, 2011.
Pfft, Nikon users...
nikon users =
Arcane, can only see a few pics not the dungeon ones which i would really like to see
ps Tim & Anwar how do i go about acquiring "press passes to gigs'
some of my sports shots (taken with a Nikon)
They should be all ok again now, I used the wrong format for linking them with my host!
Best way to start is to go to local gigs and photograph bands in all lighting environments. A lot of promotion companies don't necessarily give away passes to anyone. However, if you have a stable portfolio of live music photography you'll have a better opportunity to obtain a photopass by going through webzines like Faster Louder, Loud, Metal Obsession, Sludge Factory and so on.
Some photos from the Cavalera Conspiracy sideshow in Melbourne last night.
what your camera says about you
Okay, so I've decided to drag myself into the 21st century and get on board with digital SLR photography. I'm really looking for some advice from some of you more experienced photography guns out there - Anwar, Tim and Arcane, your stuff is fantastic, so see if you can help a Luddite out.
Now, My two main cameras have been my trusty Nikon FE10 and my Hassleblad CM500. I know these babies inside out and back to front. I can use them both so well and so confidently I don't even need to take light readings half the time with them, I know exactly how they react under pretty much any conditions. In the dark room, I know exactly when to push and pull the negative from the way I shot the film, I can get my enlarger working flawlessly and can start knocking off prints pretty much straight up.
So I guess that's been my reluctance. In fact, a couple of years ago I got a hold of a Nikon D50, which was going to be my camera of progression from film to digital, but it didn't yield the results I was after and I put it aside. Even using it on full manual settings, I felt I was always struggling with it. I kept waiting to "get" it, and never did. I borrowed a Canon off a friend for quite some time, and had exactly the same experience.
So, because of my love for my FE10, I'm still keen on Nikon, and the D7000 looks like it might be another good starting point for me. This is not a "Please convince me to use Canon" post I guess it's a "please give any assistance you can to someone who knows photography but not them digital thingies" post.
Do you guys use the in built metre or do you use a dedicated one? Do you use single mm lenses (such as a straight up 85mm) or zooms as well? Do you do much post shooting 'shopping or is what I'm looking at here pretty much straight form the camera? Do you muck around with digital ISOs? (this is VERY hard for me to get my head around. I'm used to actually changing the film if I want to change my ISO - weird, I know). Should i get the body and look at third party lenses as well, such as Sigma? I've always used Nikkor lenses on my FE10...
anything else you can think of to help a semi-newb?
Many thanks, much appreciated
I can only speak for the Canon 7D but no doubt a decent Nikon will have the same features (but backwards for us Canon users ). I do use the built-in meter for getting exposure right but it's fairly rudimentary as compared to a dedicated light meter. That said, with a bit of experience, it's a handy starting place to check your exposure and your eye can generally do the rest for you after that. Most modern DSLRs have "live view" that lets you see what the exposure is more or less doing on the screen.
Lenses, I have a range for different purposes. Fixed-zoom lenses (primes) are awesome for low-light/aperture stuff. My 50mm can get down to f/1.4 which is great for getting extreme depth of focus and allowing me to shoot video in really dark environments (for which you can't just simply leave your shutter open longer like you can do with stills). But you'd do well with a good prime (I've found 50mm to be a great all-round prime for the distance I like to shoot at), a decent mid-range zoom lens (say 11 - 70mm) and a nice wide angle for shooting in confined spaces to make them look bigger (I have a great 11-16mm wide that looks amazing on video when you zoom into stuff like a drum kit or whatever). With those lenses you should be right for almost any situation.
Now, of course this is all personal preference. You may find that an 85mm prime works better for the distance you like to shoot at, or conversely a 35mm one if you like to get in closer. My "mid-range zoom" is an 18-200mm, so I'm able to get a lot use out of it, although it's not a constant aperture lens and I need to think about it being f/3.5 on the 18mm end and f/5.6 on the 200mm end and adjust my exposure accordingly. That's where primes are great - it takes some guesswork out of stuff (primes and damn expensive constant aperture lenses).
My advice is to get a great all-purpose lens like the 18-200mm I have and get used to the camera and then go hire a few different ones to see what works for you.
For ISO, I tend to use that as a "light gain" rather than "this is the film stock I use" setting. Just assume whatever "film" you have in your camera is correct and then use that to boost the gain as you need it, keeping in mind that like proper ISO eventually you're gonna add a fuckload of noise as you get past 3200 (I can get up to 16,000 on my camera. It's awful but sometimes that's exactly the effect I'm after).
I tend to also shoot very flat and enhance in post later, that way you have the most options. Shooting in RAW is great like that too because it takes data right from the CMOS sensor and you can adjust the ISO and curves later in post rather than making the decision at the time of shooting.
LT has pretty much said what I was going to say. Get a prime lens. Its the best lens to have in any situation.
Just remember Nikon offers the same features as Canon. Both have pros and both have cons. They both do exactly the same thing, so whatever you buy I'm sure you'll be happy with either camera. Don't be sucked into shit gimmicks by retailers or pseudo intellectual hipsters who set the camera to auto and only use the camera for pointless point and shoot moments involving pointless subject matter. Test drive both cameras and see what you're comfortable with. You will be using the camera for the rest of your life, so get something that you feel comfortable with.
I'm sure you are well aware that I'm a Canon user. I mainly use two Canon 7D's for live music photography. Thanks to its two processors I'm able to take sharper images in low light, yet the only downside is that its not full frame. Full frame doesn't necessarily mean its an awesome camera. Full frame does allow a larger "canvas" to work in, as its a full 35mm frame. The added bonus of working with full frame is the expansion of pixels in every image you take. This means more subject matter in every frame, ideally for architectural, wide-angle and portrait photography. While a cropped sensor allows you to work better in telephoto environments (Wildlife, landscapes and spying on a topless women across the road). However, if I want more in my frame I simply stand back a little. Don't sacrifice your money for pure logic.
Just remember this important tip. If you have a Canon full frame camera, none of your cropped sensor lenses will work on the aforementioned. However, Nikon does have a great feature which allows you to use fully manually lenses on a full frame camera thanks to its universal F mount. Canon don't allow this due to there EF-S and EF mounts.
If you're unsure of what to buy, check out DigitalRev's Youtube channel. They offer some great advice on all makes and models of DSLR and mirrorless cameras.
The above feedback is pretty much all spot on.
I use a 50mm prime and a few other zooms including a 12-24mm. The 50mm is my cheapest, as well as the easiest to get impressive results from.
I personally do a few quick adjustments in Adobe Lightroom on most of my shots. These just amp up the saturation by playing with the levels and a little sharpening.
Awesome, thanks guys, very helpful.
Tim, do you use your 18-200 for shooting video as well? How does it stack up?
Full frame sensors give you an extra stop of light to play with and slightly more information from the CMOS, but unless you're using really expensive glass (like L glass or better for the Canons) then I honestly don't think you'll see too much of a difference. For video, there's few advantages going full frame over cropped because the resolution is dramatically lower than the best still photo resolution you'd see.
If you're really picky about what mm your lens is and want to worry that 85mm is indeed 85mm then a full frame is the way to go, or you have to back-convert what 1.6x magnification of 85mm is to take into account the crop sensor. (READ: The image is slightly bigger in a crop sensor. You'll get used to it, don't sweat it. Both work fine. I still call my 50mm prime a "50mm" on my 7D crop even though its actual zoom is equivalent to 80mm on a full frame.)
But like was mentioned, you can use a full frame lens on a crop camera and have no issues other than the image is magnified, but if you have a full frame camera, going back the other way to use crop lenses gives you all kinds of weird vignette issues (which can sometimes look arty but you're stuck with them either way).
And also very much agree with Anwar, don't buy into any brand vs brand shit. It's like a good PC vs a good Mac - if they're both set up well with well chosen hardware, there's zero advantage over the other, other than personal preference. That's Canon vs Nikon right there too.
And yeah, I do use the 18-200 for shooting both stills and video. It's decent. It was a kit lens that came with the camera. I wouldn't say it's as sharp as a high end L series lens but I've gotten some great photos out of it (and great video too). I still prefer to use the 50mm for a lot of my stuff because I love the low aperture depth of focus but you're limited to a how far you can zoom (ie: none, what you see is what you get).
Every lens will have its own character, even the "shit" ones. You'll likely find that you'll just click with one and take some brilliant photos, despite any reviews or people telling you there's better choices you could have made. It's knowing your gear that has the biggest impact on your photography.
That all said, the better the lens, usually the better the autofocus. I tend to not use much AF myself, especially on video where it's not only not a very cinematic thing to do but it actually doesn't work very well at all on DSLRs, so shitty autofocus isn't a big deal for me, and I actually have gotten used to manual focus for stills as well just out of habit. If fast AF is important to you, definitely try out a few lenses first to see what works for you. Example, my 50mm is great in good light and decent in low light. My video production partner's cheaper 50mm lens absolutely SUCKS for AF in low light. For video and image quality, they both look great.
Canon's new L series 24 - 70mm f/2.8 mk II will be released soon, which will hopefully dramatically lower the price of the original version. You'll pay around $1800 brand new for the original version, but it does offer great versatility for both portraits, action and landscape imagery. It also comes in handy for live music photography as its the essential lens for any live music photographer.
The added bonus is the f stop 2.8 which will give you some punchy bokeh (eg: blur) moments. However, to much bokeh is not always a great thing.
Remember as well, you don't always need to buy brand new equipment. I've bought several items that were refurbished and they work perfectly. You get the typical one year warranty with a return policy. Its essentially a display model which is sent back to either Canon or Nikon and has been thoroughly cleaned with several parts replaced. Essentially making it brand new item for below cost price.
High end traders like Ted's Camera, Micheals Camera and Video and independent camera retailers always sell refurbished stock. Just make sure its refurbished and not second hand. Try and stay away from JB Hifi and Harvey Norman when buying anything camera related. Unless you know a staff member, know what you want and can get the item for below cost it will actually be cheaper buying a lens online from a independent retailer. You can also buy from Hong Kong retailers like DigitalRev (via eBay) which offer cheaper items and include free shipping to Australia on any item. Once the item arrives in Australia the warranty will be void, yet if you claim the item on insurance it will be covered no matter what happens.
we are having a new press installed at work, it is a Inca S20 flat bed digital printer, minimum res 600dpi up to a max of 1000dpi, cant wait till it is up and running as i will be the main operator