Questions tagged [photography-basics]

For questions either about the fundamentals of photography or which will be of particular use to novice photographers. Q&A in this tag should be equally useful 50 years in the future or to a time-traveler 50 years in the past.

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117
votes
42answers
11k views

What are your easiest photography beginner tips?

Over time, I've found there are a handful of really simple things that anyone can do to take better pictures. What are your favorites? Understand the basics of aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. Take ...
103
votes
23answers
19k views

Why do breathtaking views turn into "boring" photos, and how can I do better?

I recently purchased a Canon 700D with a 18-135 IS lens to get into photography. I'm trying to improve, but my photos seem 'boring'. Let me give some examples: I took these today. The scenery looks ...
49
votes
16answers
9k views

Can anyone suggest books/resources on the artistic side of photography?

I am a relatively new photographer. I have no problem understanding the technical side of photography (I am an engineer by trade), but I do struggle with the more 'artistic' side of photography (...
44
votes
18answers
5k views

What are common beginner mistakes in photography?

What are common mistakes seen in images taken by beginning photographers? For example, a friend of mine pointed out that the horizon was not straight in one of my images, and now I see it everywhere!...
31
votes
8answers
37k views

Why are my photos not crisp?

I use a Canon EOS Rebel T3i (600D) with the kit lens. I have experimented a lot with different settings and modes, but I feel like I have wasted many good shots that could have looked amazing, if only ...
28
votes
7answers
5k views

How do I photograph large appliances with glass doors for product showcasing?

I have a Canon m50 camera and use the default lens that came with it, a 15-45mm lens. I work in a company that makes stainless steel products, many of them with glass. So the problem is that there ...
24
votes
8answers
4k views

What are good resources for a beginning photographer?

What are good resources (tutorials/books/videos/etc) for a beginning photographer? Keep in mind that this is for a beginning photographer, who has recently moved from a point-and-shoot to an entry-...
20
votes
3answers
3k views

What are these black lines in the photograph?

I was trying to take pictures (Samsung Note 20, both front and back camera) of the beautiful lights in a cafe in Seoul (Humbolt Cafe, 325-17 Seongsu 2(i)-ga 1(il)-dong, Seongdong-gu, Seoul). But for ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

What do I need to consider to choose between dSLR, mirrorless, or a compact as my first "serious" camera?

I am thinking of buying a camera to learn photography. Most of the time I'll be shooting portraits and landscapes. But I am not sure where I should start. Most of my friends tell me that I should get ...
16
votes
8answers
4k views

How to start learning photography? [closed]

How to start learning photography?
15
votes
3answers
21k views

Is a Pentax K1000 relevant today, and how can I get the best use of it?

I wanted to know what is the relevance of a pentax K 1000, a 35mm SLR in the present date. The one I have is almost 20 years old and I want to how can I make the most of it with respect to the film ...
14
votes
8answers
1k views

Continue taking photos from smartphone or buy a camera to practice?

I know this is a site with very good professional photographers and this might appear like a silly question but I'm just a beginner who loves photography. But I still don't have a camera so all I do ...
13
votes
3answers
8k views

Why do people move their cameras in a square motion?

I often see photographers while they're about to shoot, they move their cameras in a rapid square motion while having the subject in their camera before proceeding with the shot. What am I missing? ...
12
votes
4answers
8k views

What is the relationship between ISO, aperture, and shutter speed?

I know digital cameras have ISO options, and that ISO is the camera's sensitivity to light, but if you set higher ISO then you can get a noisy image. I also know there are two other camera options, ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there any value in full 'beginner's kit bundles'?

If I were buying my first "serious" camera, is there any value in buying a "full beginner's kit" like the below or should I just buy the camera with the kit lens? The full kit costs about $100 (or 10%)...
11
votes
5answers
11k views

Given an image how to identify whether it is RAW file or not

I'm a much like beginner level, so pardon me if this is a very basic silly question. Once I've a JPEG photograph image file, how can I find out whether it is a RAW file or not?
11
votes
5answers
917 views

Where to start with photography?

I am new to photography, and need a little advice. I currently have a Samsung L83t. To get rolling, where do I go from here? Does the camera matter? Is this camera enough to start with?
10
votes
6answers
1k views

Why are 50mm no longer the default kit lens for prosumer SLRs?

Every time someone asks me for a kit recommendation I point them towards some sort of prime lens with a standard focal length. Similarly, almost anyone I talk to about the ideal budget kit swears that ...
10
votes
2answers
6k views

Does aperture affect field of view?

I have some conceptual difficulties with understanding field of view and aperture. Let us say, I have a wide-angle lens, for example 20mm. Field of view directly correlates to the focal length of my ...
9
votes
7answers
5k views

Is it moral to remove/hide certain parts of a photo, as a photographer?

This question came to my mind when I asked this question. Kindly have a look on it and the accepted answer there. You'll see: Photo is cropped A white vertical bar thing is hidden A pipe nearby ...
9
votes
7answers
1k views

Should I postpone buying a zoom lens until I've learned to zoom with my feet?

After several years of shooting with my point-and-shoot, I upgraded to an NEX-5R, with two prime lenses — a 35mm f/1.8 and a 19mm f/2.8. I don't have a zoom lens, not even the kit lens. I've been ...
9
votes
5answers
393 views

Is working as a model a good way to learn photography?

I have a dilemma. My girlfriend is in to photography and wants to understand it more. She came in contact with a photographer who likes photographing woman either dressed or undressed. He said to help ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it better for a beginner to start with black and white photography?

I'm quite a beginner in photography with no real experience in visual art. I became interested in it about 10 months ago. I inferred from the literature to avoid color photography for 2 to 3 years, ...
9
votes
4answers
524 views

What exercises can I do with a fully automatic compact camera to help me learn?

I own a Nikon Coolpix L120 camera. It's fully automatic. I am really interested in photography. Can anyone suggest me some exercises or experiments to do with this camera so that I can make a good use ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Do cameras exist that can focus on multiple macro depths? [duplicate]

I have tiny plants that I would like to photograph. As shown in the test photo, I'm able to focus on the plants in the foreground, but not the background. Do cameras exist that can focus on multiple ...
8
votes
4answers
31k views

What are the different categories of photography? [closed]

After reading some questions, I am getting lost with stage photography, curtain photography? etc.. I only know portrait, landscape, street, sports etc..is there a standard lingo somewhere?
8
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I take a low-light portrait of a violinist, without dedicated lighting gear?

I have been asked to take a portrait of a violinist with her instrument. She's from my family so I can ask her to pose as I like. The picture is actually going to be turned into a painting later, but ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the actual physics of diffusion filters?

Recently, I purchased a Tiffen Black Pro Mist which adds halation to highlights via diffusion. I read online that diffusion filters do not add data as the entirety of the effect can be recreated in ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the "Sunny 16" rule of thumb?

I've heard of the "Sunny 16" rule. What is it? How, and in what situations, can I use it?
7
votes
7answers
855 views

What should a photography beginner focus on?

I have no experience whatsoever with photography, but it's a subject that has interested me for quite some time. As a beginner, what should I be focusing on? What camera should I get? Any other ...
7
votes
4answers
10k views

What to do when you've set the wrong ISO for your film?

I’ve put my Fujifilm Superia X-TRA 400 into my Minolta Hi-Matic 7 and I forgot to change the ISO setting for the new film. It’s set for the last roll at 200. So what setting should I put for a normal ...
7
votes
7answers
1k views

Should I upgrade my body or lens first?

I have an entry-level Nikon DSLR, and I cant decide if I should upgrade my camera body or upgrade from a AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm to whatever else might be recommended?
7
votes
8answers
3k views

Do paid online photography classes have advantages over free online tutorials for a beginner?

I am looking to getting started with the "SLR-Photography". I just purchased an SLR camera (D5100) but I feel I'm taking pretty poor photographs. Now I think the fault lies in the fact that I lack ...
6
votes
7answers
5k views

Is RAW worth the effort if using simple editing tools (e.g. iPhoto)

I am an intermediate amateur (how do you measure these things anyway? Well, I can't say I'm an advanced, and don't think I am a beginner), and I feel that I should take the RAW leap. I avoided it ...
6
votes
4answers
4k views

How to crop this photo of water drops on a leaf to improve the composition?

I'm not a professional photographer. Neither I want to pursue a career in same. But I like Photography as a hobby. But I don't know how should I crop, what area should be excluded, how to make ...
6
votes
1answer
606 views

Trying to find a good camera in my price range

I'm 13 years old and just starting to get into photography. It's coming closer to the end of the school year, and my friends want me to do our group photos. I'm trying to find a camera that will ...
6
votes
4answers
664 views

How do I start a career in photography? [duplicate]

I am hoping someone can give me some pointers and a little direction. I love photography and I am currently in a rut career wise. I would love to start on a path to make a living of some kind from ...
6
votes
1answer
130 views

Snow creates circles on my photos, how do I prevent that? [closed]

When I take photographs outdoors during snowfall, the snow flakes creates circles in the picture and end up blurring what I was actually trying to photograph. I'm a beginner, am I completely oblivious ...
5
votes
1answer
119 views

What "makes" contrast, anyway? [closed]

Or better, the loss of it? If I take a picture of a uniformly white wall, I don't expect contrast at all and that's ok. But sometimes I take photos of a a scene where there are light areas, dark ...
4
votes
6answers
5k views

Unable to get good low light photos with Canon EOS R5

I'm using EOS R5 for half year now. I'm using EF and EF/S lenses, because I spent too much on camera body and can't afford to acquire better RF lenses yet. I'm unable to get good photos without ...
4
votes
4answers
316 views

Star photography

Yesterday I made some attempts to get started on star photography before I go on my trip. I believe I will have a lot of chances to do that kind of photography and wanted to make sure I got a hang of ...
4
votes
3answers
290 views

What are the topics need to be covered by a free ebook for beginner/amateur photographers?

Some of my friends and I were thinking of publishing an ebook in our native language to help local beginner and amateur photographers. We will probably end up with a series of books later on but as a ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Is higher ISO noise evenly distributed, or does it affect colors differently?

It's obvious that higher ISO affects the photograph by adding noise or grains. But will that grain or noise be distributed equally over all parts of the photograph, or will it specifically affect ...
4
votes
3answers
818 views

Upgrading from a modern smartphone camera without going all in on a DSLR kit

Some flagship-level smartphones today come with excellent cameras, at least for their own use-cases. Sometimes you don't really need more than that in most of the photos you'll shoot, and thinking ...
4
votes
3answers
342 views

What should I consider when getting a camera for product photography?

I am planning to get a camera for some product photography. I have a tripod and white cardboard area. I think I will not require a high-end camera for this. I am simply planning to get photos of gift ...
4
votes
3answers
7k views

Canon 550D - Is it a good camera for starters?

I´ve been reading a bit about this camera, and some opinions go that it is too expensive a camera for a simple beginner, while others say it is an excellent entry-level one with enough features to go ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How to understand flash distance scale when used with a wireless transmitter?

I am reading Bryan Peterson’s book, Understanding Flash Photography. In this book, Bryan mostly talks about using the flash in manual mode and not in ETTL mode. I own a Yongnuo 600-Ex-RT speedlight ...
4
votes
4answers
18k views

How to learn to predict which lens to use between a 14-42mm and 40-150mm?

I am a beginner who has bought Olympus EP-3 and it is my first camera with interchangeable lenses. My two lenses are: M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 II R and M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 40-150mm 1:4.0-5.6 R....
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Are the terms 'push' and 'pull' relevant/applicable to digital photography?

The terms push and pull come from the days of film processing, and there's more on that here and here, but essentially they refer to increasing or decreasing the chemical processing time to account ...
4
votes
1answer
891 views

Photo Editing guide for gimp [closed]

Can I get some guidelines related to editing images with GIMP? Its not easy to learn it without any detailed guidance. How can I sharpen my gimping skills?