“Photography is the art, science and practice of creating durable images by recording light or other electromagnetic radiation, either chemically by means of a light-sensitive material such as photographic film, or electronically by means of an image sensor” –Photography-Wikipedia.
Things you need to know about photography:
- Camera (preferably DSLR)
- Camera accessories
- Editing software and skills
Selecting right DSLR
√ Set a basic budget on how much money you want to spend. Be realistic about the fact you won’t be able to get the best of every feature, as you’ll have to make tradeoffs.
√ Determine your experience level. Are you a novice or an expert when it comes to digital photography? If a novice, a point and shoot might suffice. Experts will want more manual control over the exposure process.
√ Consider what you will use your camera to capture. For kids or wildlife, get a camera that acts fast after you click the shutter.
√ Decide if you want to capture video with the camera. If you want true HD capabilities, look for 1080 resolution video. If you want to catch close to professional or professional sound, look for a camera with microphone input.
√ Check reviews on the web.http://www.dpreview.com, http://www.imaging-resource.com, and http://www.steves-digicams.com are the leading sites for serious photographers, while http://www.cnet.com has good reviews for more casual users. When you’re trying to decide between two choices, or just want to explore similar cameras, searchhttp://www.vsxl.com.
√ Make a list of which features are important to you, and prioritize the list. Keep in mind that there are tradeoffs, for example, size vs. optical zoom. You probably won’t get everything you want.
√ Consider which type of batteries would be most useful to you. Your main options are either AA batteries or a rechargeable lithium battery pack. Rechargeable pack may be lighter and last longer, but when it wears out, it may be difficult to buy a replacement. If camera takes AA batteries, it can usually run on rechargeable AA batteries as well – these are not manufacturer specific and can be easily replaced when needed.
√ Try not to end up with a complete compromise camera. Decide what’s important and get something best at that, rather than middle-of-the-road in everything.
√ Remember that megapixels do not equal good pictures. There are many other things, including the lens, that determine the quality of the image. 3 megapixels is the minimum you should look at. A 3 megapixel camera will get you excellent 4×6 prints, if you want anything bigger consider a 4 or 5 megapixel -or more if your budget will allow. Talk to a photo store professional for more information about how many megapixels you will need your camera to have to make a quality picture in the print size you want.
√ Narrow your search down to one or two models and shop around for the best price. Price comparison sites can be helpful but often the best price merchants have terrible service.
√ Make sure your camera has a warranty that you feel comfortable with. Most cameras come with a limited one year warranty, but extended warranties are usually available.
√ Buy the camera. If you have time to wait or do not need your camera immediately, we recommend you use price comparison sites such as PriceComparison.com or DealTime.com. You will save time and money finding the lowest price. Consider shopping at a local camera store. You will be paying about the same as you would off the internet, you are getting a person behind the counter who knows more about cameras than the internet, and also an easy place to take your camera back if it should happen to malfunction sometime down the road. And economically speaking, you will be supporting your local towns and creating jobs and keeping the money circulating locally.
Selecting right Lenses
A DSLR lens is one of the most important pieces of equipment for a camera. A good quality lens is essential to capturing exceptional images. Unfortunately, a lens can cost almost as much as a camera,and in some cases more. Okay, what makes a good quality lens?
1) The name brands, Nikon, Canon, Pentax and Olympus are usually more expensive than off-brands because of their superior quality control. Sigma, Tamron and Tokina are improving their lenses however, and should not be disregarded. They are a lot less expensive than a name brand lens.
2) The material used to make the lens. Lenses are manufactured with either a plastic or metal bayonet mount. The plastic lens will be cheaper and will not last as long as a metal lens.
3) Ability to focus manually as well as automatic. There will be times when you will need to focus manually so make sure the lens you purchase has this mechanism.
4) Image Stabilization or Vibration Reduction (IS or VR) are newer features which are becoming standard in new lenses. Reviews on these features indicate that they really do work. It is possible to hand-hold your camera and shoot as slow as 1/15 sec. and still have a sharp image.
5) The focal length of your lens should provide you with a working zoom that you are accustomed to using in your professional or personal use of your camera. One of my favorite lens is a fixed focal length of 50mm, which I refer to as the “Nifty Fifty”. I prefer this lens because it opens up to 1.8 so I can shoot wide open and blur out the background. The beauty of this lens is not only in its quality, but it’s price – $125. Also a 50mm lens is about what the eye sees, so is very true to life. (see link above)
6) A super fast auto focus: Nine times out of ten you will be using auto focus. Your lens should be able to focus quickly in regular light and low light. If your lens does not focus quickly you will miss important shots. Look for a USM lens (made by Canon). They guarantee fast and quiet auto focus so you could use it for a wedding, bar mitzvah, or other events.
7) A fast lens: Do not confuse this with fast auto focus. A fast lens has a maximum aperture of at least 2.8. Lenses in this category cost more because they are more expensive to manufacture. If you are a professional you should own at least one lens that opens up to 2.8. Some lens open up even more to 1.8 or 1.2 My favorite lens in the world is the Canon Zoom Telephoto EF 70-200mm f/4.0L IS USM. The price is $1200 but it compares to nothing. The majority of zoom lens have an aperture that changes with the zoom. The lens may open up to 2.8 if you are using a wider focal length, however once you zoom out, say to 150mm, the speed changes to 5.6. This is typical for a kit lens, however a lens that has a fixed speed throughout the entire zoom is superior.
Sample Video of DSLR Canon 60D: