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Hi, new mature student (West midlands)

Discussion in 'Introductions...' started by Legojon, Jul 30, 2019.

  1. steveandthedogs

    steveandthedogs Well-Known Member

    My step-daughter in law is Korean, friend in Bath works with some Urdu speakers and I’m in Wales.

    Where’s the problem?

    S
     
  2. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    It's the machine translation that's the problem!

    Adrian
     
    steveandthedogs likes this.
  3. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member

    On your degree course there will be a number of technicians as well as lecturers.
    It would be a good thing to get on the right side of the technicians. as they can be extremely helpful.
    they are often better at the "practical side of photography" while the Lecturers take care of the Art, history and theory.
    However this is not a fixed rule, and it might take a little effort to discover who is the best person to ask, in the department, for technical help.
    Some are way better than others.
    Don't be afraid of asking "Stupid" questions... they have heard them all before.

    You are paying good money for your degree... so take advantage of everything and everyone that is on offer.

    However university is more about "learning" than "teaching", so you have to be proactive, not passive.
     
    Legojon likes this.
  4. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    Speaking as someone who's been the technician in training labs, Terry speaks words of much wisdom. Good technical staff will teach you a lot more about how to use things than the "experts". And if we can't, we've got the experience to know who to ask or where to look.

    Adrian
     
  5. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    None, if as I suppose, all speak English with a precision greater than that of most English school leavers.
     
  6. gray1720

    gray1720 Well-Known Member

    *WHHOOOOSSSHHHHH*
     
  7. Legojon

    Legojon Active Member

    Well, I think I'm starting to get used to my camera controls. Have got it set at the moment to give back button focusing a try. The shutter button half press set to lock exposure. Having said that, I handed my first assignment in and it was pretty much a disaster. "Framing too tight, framing too wide, lack of focal interest, underexposed, overexposed." Think I ticked pretty much every box I didn't want. Oh well... bit of a downer but started assignment 2.

    Still not convinced on the light meter. I've currently got it set to +0.3 exposure compensation all the time as everything seems to come out a bit on the dark side (confirmed by the histogram).
     
  8. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Not unknown. I used to have my first camera on -1/3.
     
  9. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    If you can't see why you got these comments, which don't sound of a constructive nature, post them here !
     
  10. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

     
  11. Legojon

    Legojon Active Member

    I'm not sure what happened really, my spec as a first assignment was to set a baseline for where I'm at (no matter how good or bad). Which having never held a camera up until summer this year I did. The course assesses you on this first assignment then you go on to learn things like exposure, aperture, composition. So i thought it a bit harsh to be criticised on stuff I've not been taught. But then I am a bit of an interloper because some would have done photography at A level and would know this stuff already. It's not done wonders for my enthusiasm, but I guess if you're going to take photos and put them out there, you've got to be prepared for all feedback. I'm currently putting all my effort into the second assignment, hopefully (for my self-esteem) I get better feedback next time around.

    Oh yeah, the other thing was, I could have easily upped the exposure 1/3 or so in photoshop. BUT, the brief said not to edit the images so they could see what they are working with. Won't be making that mistake again.

    I've attached one of my "boring" photos. Which I can kind of see. I know the butterflies aren't the best exposed. But I figured the path would make a good leading line into the wooden bears.
     

    Attached Files:

  12. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    They should have explained why in the context of the assignment. In a photograph the eye tends to go to the light coloured areas first so the first impression of this that the path is the main subject, and frankly it isn't a particularly pretty one so that is probably the source of the "boring" comment. The near bench on the bottom left is a strong feature because of the lighting and that's what I "saw" when I looked at it. The sculptures on the black posts get lost in the background. I can't really make them out even though you tell that they are butterflies. The bear is also hard to see and is too small and central in the frame for the idea of a leading line to work, usually the device works best with an off-centre subject. To some extent in this picture the path works in reverse, bringing the eye to the bottom left bench. It is very difficult to take pictures in the mixed lighting you get in woods. Trees/bushes generally look a mess. I speak from experience! I like woodland walks but getting good images is very difficult. If the intent here was to show the butterflies they have to be dominant in the frame with some separation from the background or the tracery in the wings is lost in the background detail. You can get this using a shallow depth of field but here probably you'd also need some fill-in flash to help drop the background by making it darker than the sculpture. It seems to me a step too far to get attention on the bears from that position.
     
  13. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    So if you cannot 'edit' your images, as well as testing your ability to use your camera body's light meter, the assignment is also a chance for your tutor to see your images and advise on settings like exposure compensation. You've uploaded this shot with the technical data removed, so I cant't see if you were using any of the automated exposure settings, but you reference to exposure compensations suggests that you are. I'm a manual exposure user (manual vs. automated exposure is a recurring subject here), and would realise from experience that a light meter would overexpose this shot because it has more dark areas than light ones. Similarly, when photographing snow scenes in daylight, your light meter may underexpose the shot. I know that modern cameras are meant to be virtually foolproof with stuff like this, so it may be that a different setting on the exposure measurement used by your camera body may help. But you'll need to look this up in the camera body's user manual.

    If you are lucky, other people on the course will also have under/overexposure problems and your tutor can then progress to how most light meters work and in what circumstances the settings they suggest may need may need to be changed by you.

    Finally, you suggest that you could have 'easily upped the exposure 1/3 or so in photoshop', but this is what the camera did for you and you got the image you uploaded. Below is what happened when I darkened the the shot to 'override' the camera's light meter settings, as if I was doing this when taking the shot. When comparing the two versions, preference may be a matter of opinion.
     

    Attached Files:

  14. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    That's true. At the risk of too much information: Woodland, especially with sunshine, tends to mess up evaluative metering which is intended to cope with areas of bright and dark distributed across the scene. Ordinary averaged metering then applying a correction, as just described, is the best way using the camera meter in this situation. I sometimes use a hand-held meter instead. The mirrorless camera's WYSIWYG viewfinder, where you can see the effect of exposure compensation directly, can also get a bit messed up in woods as the ones I've got tend to ramp the contrast up in woodland. The camera auto-white balance, although very, very good, is most weak under trees with mixed sunlight. There is a case to be made for setting a custom white balance but this getting quite refined and you may not come across this for a while yet.
     
  15. Terrywoodenpic

    Terrywoodenpic Well-Known Member

    Fame close, then move in closer still.
     
    RogerMac likes this.
  16. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    Good working rule. Another version is "If your pictures are not good enough you are not close enough."
     
  17. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    I would argue that students learning the basics of photography should not be allowed to use any automated functions on their camera - how else are they going to learn and understand what these functions do? And, of course, not knowing how something works is likely to be a problem when you use it. But once they know and understand all the functions, they will be able to make an informed decision about relying on them.

    I expect a tirade of contrary opinions about automated features.
    But, as usual, I dare to ask how did we ever take photographs without them?
     

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