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Old 16th March 2017, 02:36   #31
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Default Re: Gear for the Serious Amateur Photographer

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No offence, but you have to be honest: Is your family a good enough peer group to rate your images. Fact is, chances are they are simply not! You need to get feedback from, ideally, professional photographers, not family and friends.
You seem to have forgotten that what is being talked about here is amateur photography. Like... for fun and enjoyment. Sure, there are many very serious amateurs, and those, all the way up and down the scale, who want to get better, technically and artistically. So why be so heavy with the idea of the professional editing axe? Easy there! For most photographers, their audience is family, friends, and inhabitants of the same corners of the internet. What's wrong with that?
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Old 16th March 2017, 03:39   #32
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You seem to have forgotten that what is being talked about here is amateur photography. Like... for fun and enjoyment. Sure, there are many very serious amateurs, and those, all the way up and down the scale, who want to get better, technically and artistically. So why be so heavy with the idea of the professional editing axe? Easy there! For most photographers, their audience is family, friends, and inhabitants of the same corners of the internet. What's wrong with that?
There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. However, if you want to improve you skills as a amateur photographer, it would be a good thing, not to ask friends and family, but find a photography club or so to get feedback.

Iím just a very average amateur photographer. i donít consider myself professional in any way shape or format. But I do want to advance my skills. And family and friends, on the whole, are simply not helping.

So if you are the amateur that just wants to amuse friend and family, by all accounts be my guest. If you want to advance your skills you have to move beyond family and friends.

That is not a fact, that is just an opinion. Albeit, itís probably shared by many amateur and professional photographers.

Everybody needs to decide for themselves how they enjoy their hobby. For some itís buying endless amount of kit, some without hardly using it.

For others, it is joining a photographic society with a very mediocre bit of kit. But getting very specific feedback. There is no good or bad. Itís just what you enjoy and or prefer.

My point, opinion if you like, if you want to improve your photography, you might want to consider other audiences than family and friends.


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Old 16th March 2017, 04:13   #33
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Default Re: Gear for the Serious Amateur Photographer

Sure. Just came over a bit heavy for the conversation. At least, that's how I read it, and the written word can, of course be misunderstood. Don't we all learn that one is lucky to get one good picture in six, and digital makes that sixty? I think we do.

No doubt, the best present anyone could give a would-be writer is a red pen. But without encouragement, perhaps they'd never write anything to edit.

To be honest, Earthian's pictures make me feel like there's hardly any point in even trying. And I'm certainly not going to go out and buy the kit with some illusion that I could start taking pics like that. Ha Ha, first published picture by a friend of mine was taken on a plastic film camera with zero exposure controls and, still with minimal technology or technical knowledge, she has moved on and upwards from there. Current speciality, dragon flies, both the natural history and the photography.

Art is a funny business. I've recently seen some "superb" photographs. At least, they would have been superb: all the colour, composition, subject matter, everything was there... except life. Somehow, they looked as if they had been taken to be technically superb.

All I take is diary snaps <blush> and I don't pretend otherwise. Although, hey, occasionally I try. And I'd like a camera with less digital noise, even for that.
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Old 16th March 2017, 07:47   #34
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Default Re: Gear for the Serious Amateur Photographer

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Sorry, sure you need to be able to interpret a histogram, but post processing is a real skills and takes much more than knowing a histogram.
Histogram was just an example. Main point being, owning a software and applying plugins is not enough. One will need to know science of editing and its elements.


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One of the most difficult things for any photographer, even a very experienced and professional is to rate your own photographs. Editing every image you have taken is just silly. Part of the post processing is to decide which picture to edit.

Depends a big on the topics and so, but I would easily shoot 400-500 images on a day. I might edit 40-50. I will publish 4-5 images.
My point here was on the learning curve and the progression of it. In other words, when you are new, you start with editing every thing in the folder. Then you learn which one to touch and finally you reach a point where PP required is minimal most snaps are very good straight out of the camera.


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Agree, but I won’t do anything for your images as such.
Did you refer to my point on published images ? If so, I see even more a need to store them well. Because these are the result of selection from the million we shot. From each event when you create a personal collection, you want store that collection well. I would suggest a good cloud storage should do well here. At least that is how I do it. For the RAW images which I need to hold, I use local back-ups.

Last edited by ampere : 16th March 2017 at 07:48.
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Old 16th March 2017, 09:56   #35
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Default Re: Gear for the Serious Amateur Photographer

Getting feedback from professionals or other amateur photographers equally important. This helps in many ways. I prefer sharing my pictures in online forums and local circles. Feedback from them always helps to improve skill, also gives new perspective.

Most of the time an artwork which I think good receives very less appreciation and the one not up to the mark as per me gets good feedback. Again perspective, composition and depth matters.

About storage, I rely on two external disks of 1 TB capacity. First one contains RAW files which are unedited. This disk is kind a junk. In second disk I store all processed images, kind of organised for easy searching. And third level is cloud storage, photos which are good as per me and critiques goes here as an additional level of backup. This tip I learnt from a professional photographer / friend couple of years back.

Learning never ends!
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Old 16th March 2017, 10:03   #36
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Sure. Just came over a bit heavy for the conversation. At least, that's how I read it, and the written word can, of course be misunderstood.
Sure, but this is a thread about serious amateur photography. Now we could try and define what makes a serious amateur of course. But in my book when somebody is serious about his/her photography, he/she will always be trying to improve. There is many ways of doing that, but one very practical and well proven way is getting peer feedback, or preferably from people with even more advanced skills than yourself. That usually leaves the family and friends out.

If you just shoot pictures for friends and family, by all means do. However, you probably donít need this sort of kit. A good system camera might well be enough. on the other hand, if you enjoy owning a high end camera and just be a happy family snapper, again nothing wrong with it. Get a Hasselblad, knock yourself out, whatever you enjoy.

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Don't we all learn that one is lucky to get one good picture in six, and digital makes that sixty? I think we do.
All the courses I have attend teach you that taking great pictures is rarely down to luck. Obviously, you might get lucky once in a while.

It is true that digital has allowed for people taking extraordinary number of pictures. And yes, your are likely find one that is not as average as the other thousand. Thatís just statistics.

The trick is, see my other point, ensuring you learn and develop your skills. So how close to a good picture are the ones you donít edit/publish?

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To be honest, Earthian's pictures make me feel like there's hardly any point in even trying. And I'm certainly not going to go out and buy the kit with some illusion that I could start taking pics like that.
Thatís a shame, and Iím sure that is not what he meant. He wrote this thread as he is obviously a very enthusiastic photographer. At some point in time he took his first picture and Iím sure that wasnít anything like the work his displays in this thread.

But any skill takes time to develop. Again, join a good photography club. I have found that always very inspirational and with good constructive precise feedback your skills develop quickly!


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Histogram was just an example. Main point being, owning a software and applying plugins is not enough. One will need to know science of editing and its elements.
.
To add, my point is that all the fancy (expensive) camera and PP kit goes to waste if you donít calibrate your monitor! So invest in a calibration kit!

Enjoy, keep snapping!

Jeroen
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Old 16th March 2017, 13:54   #37
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Default Re: Gear for the Serious Amateur Photographer

I don't really mean that Earthian or other good amateurs (Pros is a different ball game) put me off: their work is inspiring, as well as being a delight to see and enjoy. And I have one or two pretty-good bird pictures that I had to go no further than my garden, and own nothing better than a consumer super-zoom, to take.
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Old 16th March 2017, 15:16   #38
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Sure, but this is a thread about serious amateur photography. Now we could try and define what makes a serious amateur of course...
....If you just shoot pictures for friends and family, by all means do. However, you probably donít need this sort of kit.
Well, i would disagree. To use an analogy of this forum and cars, just because one has an expensive car, or a fast car, does not mean that he has to drive fast. Each of us enjoy driving our vehicles the way we find pleasure in doing so. To be fair, you do concede the point later on.
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And I have one or two pretty-good bird pictures that I had to go no further than my garden, and own nothing better than a consumer super-zoom, to take.
I enjoyed your sun bird nesting pictures.

i think what it boils down to is "To each, his own" I enjoy taking wildlife portraits. Yes, they could be average, even mediocre. i don't get discouraged or put off. I try and do better the next time. You cannot mandate that i had better take good 'professional' photos since i have the equipment. It is like asking one to drive like one of the stunt drivers in a James Bond movie, just because one has an Alfa Romeo.

It took me a long time to understand ( and try and practice) what is written in my signature line.
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Old 16th March 2017, 15:44   #39
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i think what it boils down to is "To each, his own".

You cannot mandate that i had better take good 'professional' photos since i have the equipment. It is like asking one to drive like one of the stunt drivers in a James Bond movie, just because one has an Alfa Romeo.

.

Fully agree, whatever takes your fancy, whichever way you enjoy your hobby. i know plenty of people who seem to spend more time on reviewing and buying new kit, selling of their old kit, then they spend on actual photography. Whatever floats your boat. I, for one have never, owned a DSLR. Until the Olympus OMD came to the market I have used system cameras. High end system cameras, but still system cameras. Never felt my kit was limiting my photography.

Its interesting to see that at the Royal Photography Society very little time is spend talking/Discussing gear. It seems more or less a none issue. You get what you feel comfortable with or, if you are into specialized work you might have to invest in certain bits.

To be honest I don't like the term amateur photographer much. These days that are plenty of "amateurs" that take outstanding pictures in just about any field. So I really don't think it makes sense to distinguish between pro and amateur. They are both photographers. The only difference is their individual skills in creating photographs. Whether you earn money from it is of no concern to me.
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Old 16th March 2017, 17:07   #40
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To be honest I don't like the term amateur photographer much. These days that are plenty of "amateurs" that take outstanding pictures in just about any field. So I really don't think it makes sense to distinguish between pro and amateur. They are both photographers. The only difference is their individual skills in creating photographs. Whether you earn money from it is of no concern to me.
It seems to be you that introduced the concern.

This thread is hardly an equipment fest. I think it quite likely that most [D]SLR owners will own more lenses and more bits and pieces.

Here we are being encouraged to take photographs, and being shown the least we need to take certain kinds of photos. And I can consign those pics that need the 600mm lens to dreams, because I am physically lazy and would never carry this thing around with me. I baulk at carrying less than a kilo of superzoom around!

Call my mules and porters: I want to take some photos
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Old 16th March 2017, 19:04   #41
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. And I can consign those pics that need the 600mm lens to dreams, because I am physically lazy and would never carry this thing around with me. I baulk at carrying less than a kilo of superzoom around!



Call my mules and porters: I want to take some photos

You make a compelling case for upgrading to a micro four third system. Think of all the kilograms you will be saving!

I don't have experience with such large zooms as it is not required for my kind of photography. But I have to admit that the weight factor as I get older and a little less nimble is definitely something I look for. The last thing you want is to do is to buy all the expensive glass and then leave it home because it weighs you down.

When it comes to lenses I have invested in two Olympus Pro lenses which gives me 24-80 and 80-300mm in SLR terms. And a very cheap lens cap fish eye. That's all. Does it for me and it's very light too!

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Old 17th March 2017, 11:33   #42
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2) As per your thread I understand that you backup your photos mainly via Card readers. However I would like to see or download the pictures on-the-go and hence looking for the wi-fi option. I have also heard of Wi-fi sd cards that could do the same in case the camera body doesn't have the option - what's your thought on this?

3) Within the same budget I am also able to find a used Nikon D90 with the following lens:
  • 18-105mm
  • 70-300mm
  • 50mm f/1.8
  • 35mm f/1.8

The camera is 4 years old and has a slight damage on the card door - however does not affect functioning in any kind - as told to me. I am yet to see the item in person.
2. Don't waste your time on built in wi-fi or bluetooth. Nikon has seriously dropped the ball on these aspects and they are reasonably useless on their cameras IMHO.

3. The D90 is a fantastic body.

- Unless you are getting the 18-105 as a kit, don't bother with it. It's not very good.
- The 70-300 is a decent budget lens to start telephoto photography. If you buy a D90 (An issue with the D3000 and 5000 series is that you are restricted to the more expensive AF-s lenses) - you can get the AF version for like 7k and see if it suits your beginner needs before upgrading down the road.
- 50mm f1.8 is one of the best lenses ever. Buy it with your eyes closed. Again if you get the D90, the AF 50 is a fantastic deal.

Last edited by GTO : 17th March 2017 at 15:38. Reason: STRICTLY no 'for sale' posts on the forum. Use our classifieds
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Old 17th March 2017, 14:13   #43
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2. Don't waste your time on built in wi-fi or bluetooth. Nikon has seriously dropped the ball on these aspects and they are reasonably useless on their cameras IMHO.
Thanks for the inputs VellVector.

I am still confused on the investment part as well as what to buy, however my budget stays put, so still looking for various options within that.

Also are the AF-s lenses compatible with the d90s / 97000s ?

Last edited by GTO : 17th March 2017 at 15:38. Reason: Please quote ONLY the relevant bits of a post. Quoting a full, long post inconveniences our mobile readers.
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Old 17th March 2017, 15:59   #44
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Thanks for the inputs VellVector.

I am still confused on the investment part as well as what to buy, however my budget stays put, so still looking for various options within that.

Also are the AF-s lenses compatible with the d90s / 97000s ?
Yes the AF-S lenses are compatible with the D90/7000 series. They are also compatible with the AF series.
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