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Anything but Auto. - Photography Basics

About Anything but Auto.

Previous Entry Anything but Auto. Nov. 26th, 2007 @ 01:50 am Next Entry
So, I have a Canon Digital Rebel XTi.

I generally just use the auto setting. However, I am interested in exploring the other features of the camera...I'm just not sure how!

So a novice question... What are the most commonly used camera settings on an SLR? I have no idea about white balance and all of that...what it all means. ;[ Anyone in the mood to teach me? :]
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From:panophobia
Date:November 27th, 2007 09:22 pm (UTC)
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white balance is a setting that, under whatever light conditions, the whites in the photograph look white. i've never used a canon rebel so i can't say off my head, but on some cameras you set it by temperature (degrees in kelvin), or they have little symbols (like a sunshine for bright sunny days, or similar lighting). experiment by setting the camera on one white balance setting a shoot several different times during the day, indoor and out and you'll see a difference in the way the whites show up.

sorry, that was probably a super inefficient way to explain white balance. there's a whole lot more of "and all of that" but i'm in the mood! so ask away!
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From:r_ch_l
Date:November 28th, 2007 01:15 am (UTC)
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Actually that helps a lot! Everything I have read I read like..three times and then I just end up going..."..........what? eff this." haha.

Well, my main problem with pictures is the indoor lighting. I don't have the funds for a nice off-camera flash, or any spot lights... so I'm just using regular over-head fan lights, and lamps.

Any tricks with those? Usually, my pictures end up having the subject in focus, but the background being dark as hell. If it were black, it wouldn't be so bad...but you can see parts of stuff...bleh. ;]
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From:panophobia
Date:November 28th, 2007 05:17 am (UTC)
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indoor lighting is tough. is the on-camera flash worthless? i used to use an olympus e-300, and the on-camera flash was actually really decent and a lot of fun to play with.

are you asking to shoot just snap shots or more intended photographs? if you're trying to shoot something indoor like a staged portrait or still life or something, you can actually build make-shift lights that can help a lot (i know there were instructions on diynetwork once). for photographing small pieces (say if you were doing product photography), you can build really nice lighting situations with a bucket. and also utilize what you have around your home as backdrops.
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From:recalcitrant
Date:November 28th, 2007 12:09 pm (UTC)
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shoot in raw and do your post production in photoshop.

i suggest actually takinbg a short course in photography and learning to use "M" and operating the shutter speed and aperture.

otherwise you'd just be better off with a point and shoot camera.

alternatively read the manual!
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