Beginner The more I read .....

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Rosaline
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#1
... on these forums, the more ignorant I feel! Have sooooo much to learn. Got frustrated today trying to take photos of running water. They all turned out really washed out. I suppose it's a case of practice makes perfect but I sure have lot of practicing to do!
 
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#2
Yep i know what you mean :)

You would do well to post an image for help in improvement.

Your post sounds more like a statement than a cry for help :arghh:

About all i'm happy with suggesting is did you use a tripod ?
 
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#5
I've been on here 5 years today, and in reflection I've learned so much. I've still got a long way to go, but the biggest thing I've learned is that subject and composition are by far the most important aspects. Concentrate on this, and by practice the technical aspects will come as you progress.

As much as you load your brain up with technical aspects, it tends to go out the window a bit when your out in the field, and is soon forgotten. Although I understand the technical aspects, I tend to keep reading them and keep them fresh in my mind.

This forum is awesome for both technical aspects and pure inspiration.

Allan.
 
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Ros
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#6
?...did you use a tripod ?
All I had with me today was a small Joby which wasn't enough for my camera (Fujifilm x-t1). Tried just resting it on a railing which still didn't help.

Did you use a filter?
No. Is that necessary?

Yep i know what you mean :)

You would do well to post an image for help in improvement.

Thought I'd deleted them all but here's one:



image
by RosNapier, on Flickr

At least the only way is up and I can't get much worse (she says hopefully)?
 
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#7
No EXIF data (camera settings, I case you don't know:)) in Flickr for the photograph, bit looks very over exposed and out of focus. What settings did you use?

Cheers.
 
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Ros
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#8
Not sure on this one as I took a few. Tried to do two or three second exposure and changed the ISO settings. Think I need to keep trying and take a note of settings so I know what NOT to do next time ;)
 
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#9
Not sure on this one as I took a few. Tried to do two or three second exposure and changed the ISO settings. Think I need to keep trying and take a note of settings so I know what NOT to do next time ;)
Your camera should record the settings. What software do you use to save your photographs to your computer?

2-3 seconds seems too long as it looks around 2 PM?

Cheers.
 
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Ros
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#10
Your camera should record the settings. What software do you use to save your photographs to your computer?

2-3 seconds seems too long as it looks around 2 PM?

Cheers.
Yes, it was at around 2pm. I'm in Dublin for a few days so only have my ipad with me. Just imported from the camera. Will have a proper look when I get home.
 

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#11
Yes, it was at around 2pm. I'm in Dublin for a few days so only have my ipad with me. Just imported from the camera. Will have a proper look when I get home.
What mode are you shooting in?

Edit: without seeing the setting my guess is that you've accidentally dialled in about 3-4 stops over exposure, so the shutter is open for far longer than needed
 
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Ros
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#12
What mode are you shooting in?

The fact I can't answer your question probably says it all ;) Trying to run before I can walk. Will get the manual out and try to get the basics right before trying to do anything else.
 

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#15

MWHCVT

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#17
The far right button? As per the photo - at "0".
Hmm, okay so that's not the issue...I'm just trying to get a copy of the manual for your camera up...I suspect your possible shooting in full manual when really you don't need/want to be when your just learning...
 
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Ros
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#18
Hmm, okay so that's not the issue...I'm just trying to get a copy of the manual for your camera up...I suspect your possible shooting in full manual when really you don't need/want to be when your just learning...
Yes, didn't want to keep using the auto settings but it makes sense to do that until I know what I'm doing!
 

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#19
Yes, didn't want to keep using the auto settings but it makes sense to do that until I know what I'm doing!
Can you tell me what position your other dials are in, assuming you've not changed it since earlier? I maybe wrong but the closest you camera comes to having a auto mode would be the program mode, however I would stick with aperture priority and let the camera control the shutter speed to start with, set your ISO @100 and then raise that should your shutter speed be too low
 
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Cobra

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#20
It looks to me that either you or the camera has exposed for the "dark areas"
leaving the "light area's" dramatically over exposed.

Shooting in bright light, is not easy, especially when shooting reflective area's such as water.
If the detail is blown (gone) in the whites (Light area's) there is nothing you can do,

I've pulled it back the best I can, but its no where near perfect,
as you can see.
Most of the detail is totally lost in the "white area's"


Edit1.jpg
 
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Ros
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#21
Can you tell me what position your other dials are in, assuming you've not changed it since earlier? I maybe wrong but the closest you camera comes to having a auto mode would be the program mode, however I would stick with aperture priority and let the camera control the shutter speed to start with, set your ISO @100 and then raise that should your shutter speed be too low
Can't remember what I did now as I tried a few different settings. Will have a practice with aperture priority. Thanks for the help.
 
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Ros
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#22
It looks to me that either you or the camera has exposed for the "dark areas"
leaving the "light area's" dramatically over exposed.

Shooting in bright light, is not easy, especially when shooting reflective area's such as water.
If the detail is blown (gone) in the whites (Light area's) there is nothing you can do,

I've pulled it back the best I can, but its no where near perfect,
as you can see.
Most of the detail is totally lost in the "white area's"


View attachment 15875
Thanks. Probably wasn't the best time of day to try this but thought I'd have a go. The beauty of digital cameras is I can just delete and try again ;)
 

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#23
Can't remember what I did now as I tried a few different settings. Will have a practice with aperture priority. Thanks for the help.
Page 46-56 of the manual really will be worth reading before you take the camera out again..

http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/manuals/pdf/index/x/fujifilm_xt1_manual_en.pdf

It tells you all about the exposure modes on your camera and how to set them :) I'll be happy to try and explain anything from that further if you need it... Online/PDF pages is actually 62-72
 
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Ros
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#24
Page 46-56 of the manual really will be worth reading before you take the camera out again..

http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/manuals/pdf/index/x/fujifilm_xt1_manual_en.pdf

It tells you all about the exposure modes on your camera and how to set them :) I'll be happy to try and explain anything from that further if you need it... Online/PDF pages is actually 62-72
Cheers! Will have a look when I get home. This really is a great forum. Don't understand it all yet but we've all got to start somewhere.
 

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#26
Cheers! Will have a look when I get home. This really is a great forum. Don't understand it all yet but we've all got to start somewhere.
Indeed, we also started right at the bottom with no knowledge and then progressed from there on up, and for most of us we have plenty of people to thank for that help and guidance and that for me is one of the reasons I'll always help as much as I can

I love this forum for just how wonderful and helpful it can be, my biggest regret is not joining it sooner, I was paying around with my camera for about a year before I randomly decided to see if there was just a thing as a photography forum...and here I am now :eek:

Absolutely, there is plenty of help, and we all had to start somewhere :)
Indeed
 
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#27
Don't let it stress you out by reading too much. It used to really get me down when I tried to learn as much as possible, as quick as possible. The best way I found was just taking photos and when they're not what you wanted, look to see what you did wrong and try again. Patience is definitely the key here! I made the mistake of travelling miles to get photos of certain things, getting it wrong then spending ages going back :D The best thing to do is look at the basics to see what causes what to happen, e.g. why it's too bright, why it's blurred, and what causes it. Just working those two things out is a HUGE step towards getting your head around it when you're started. Well, if you're daft like me :D

Another way of doing things is to take a photo on auto, then take your own photo in another setting. If it's not as good as the auto one, look at what is different in the exif data then tinker with each setting one at a time until you figure out what it's doing :)
 
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#29
Not sure on this one as I took a few. Tried to do two or three second exposure and changed the ISO settings. Think I need to keep trying and take a note of settings so I know what NOT to do next time ;)
This is your problem. You cannot use exposure times that long in daylight, and it's unrealistic to expect a sharp result without a tripod.

You need to understand the Exposure Triangle of shutter speed, lens aperture, and ISO. They always work together, and if you change one then either one or both of the other two must also be adjusted to compensate to maintain correct exposure. The problem with two or three seconds exposure times in daylight is it's way beyond the scope of the other controls. You need a neutral density filter for that.

Have a look at this tutorial from our own Pookeyhead and I'm sure you'll get the hang of it :) http://www.talkphotography.co.uk/th...ure-theory-but-were-afraid-to-ask-101.440126/

Don't use manual settings until you've got a good grasp of it.
 
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#30
This is your problem. You cannot use exposure times that long in daylight, and it's unrealistic to expect a sharp result without a tripod.

You need to understand the Exposure Triangle of shutter speed, lens aperture, and ISO. They always work together, and if you change one then either one or both of the other two must also be adjusted to compensate to maintain correct exposure. The problem with two or three seconds exposure times in daylight is it's way beyond the scope of the other controls. You need a neutral density filter for that.

Have a look at this tutorial from our own Pookeyhead and I'm sure you'll get the hang of it :) http://www.talkphotography.co.uk/th...ure-theory-but-were-afraid-to-ask-101.440126/

Don't use manual settings until you've got a good grasp of it.
Thanks for that. As I say I have a lot of learning to do but I usually learn better when I've made mistakes then try to figure out what I did wrong.
 
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#31
Thanks for that. As I say I have a lot of learning to do but I usually learn better when I've made mistakes then try to figure out what I did wrong.
In that case, you've made a very good start ;) Personally, I think it's better to grasp the basics, try to get things right, and then be encouraged by your success.

The basics are not difficult, and it's all in that tutorial. Once you've got exposure setting sorted, move on to how shutter speeds control movement - when you can hand-hold and when you need a tripod. These are the essentials for decent quality results.

Then explore lens apertures to control depth of field and the sharp/unsharp areas within the picture. And how shutter speeds can be used to creatively freeze subject movement, or create intentional blur.

After that, it's just practise, read, ask questions, practise, ask questions, read etc etc and all the other bits will fall into place.
 
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#32
Let me start by saying we all have room to learn. What I did was shoot, look at the shots and come here to ask question and repeat. I still do it today. Don't worry about composition at first, learn exposure. There will be plenty of time for the detail work but until you understand exposure you want have a shot. Exposure is just the balance of light. You have control over that balance via your setting. There are many good sites to explain this. Unfortunately I am on my ipad and don't have links for you right this second.
 
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#33
All I had with me today was a small Joby which wasn't enough for my camera (Fujifilm x-t1). Tried just resting it on a railing which still didn't help.



No. Is that necessary?




Thought I'd deleted them all but here's one:



image
by RosNapier, on Flickr

At least the only way is up and I can't get much worse (she says hopefully)?

It's just over exposed. Just spend some time learning the exposure basics.

http://www.talkphotography.co.uk/th...ure-theory-but-were-afraid-to-ask-101.440126/

This may help too

http://camerasim.com/apps/camera-simulator/
 
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#34
Not sure on this one as I took a few. Tried to do two or three second exposure and changed the ISO settings. Think I need to keep trying and take a note of settings so I know what NOT to do next time ;)

In daylight a 2-3 second exposure is going to be far too long for anything but massive over exposure. Once you've read the links David has posted then it would be worth investing in an ND filter for running water shots (if thats what you'd like to do
 

big soft moose

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#35
As per the above you have fallen into the common trap of thinking that you can extend your exposure for blurred water , without considering how much light is reaching the sensor

on a very cloudy day (or twilight) you might get away with 2-3 sec if you also set a low iso and a narrow aperture - but in the middle of the day with the sun out you have no chance.

If you want to shoot long exposures in daylight you need a "neutral density" filter (usually written ND) - this is basically a gray filter that reduces the amount of light coming in and thus enables you to have the shutter open for longer without over exposing the shot. You also definitely need a tripod and a remote release to get a sharp shot
 
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#36
Thanks for all the replies and links everyone. Back home now so will get some reading done. I have "invested" in a cheap tripod so will have another go soon. Still not sure what kind of photography I want to do as at the moment I want to do everything! Slowly slowly though and hopefully I'll get there.
 

big soft moose

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#37
Thanks for all the replies and links everyone. Back home now so will get some reading done. I have "invested" in a cheap tripod so will have another go soon. Still not sure what kind of photography I want to do as at the moment I want to do everything! Slowly slowly though and hopefully I'll get there.
Not to put you off but how cheap ? in my experience the really cheap pressed aluminium ones are neither use nor ornament and don't hold a camera steady enough for long exposures etc. Assuming you are on a budget and don't want to buy a named brand like manfrotto or velbon , red snapper are a good budget alternative
 
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#38
Not to put you off but how cheap ? in my experience the really cheap pressed aluminium ones are neither use nor ornament and don't hold a camera steady enough for long exposures etc. Assuming you are on a budget and don't want to buy a named brand like manfrotto or velbon , red snapper are a good budget alternative
Very cheap! Wouldn't be a disaster if it ended in the bin but I have had use of it so far. I'm lucky enough to have a lovely view of Edinburgh Castle and the Pentland Hills from my living room and balcony so it's steady enough for there. Tried it once on the street and it was okay. I suspect if there was any sort of wind (like normal Edinburgh weather) it would be a bit shaky. Thanks for the alternative suggestion. Will have a look. Don't want to get anything so heavy that it never gets taken out and used.
 
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#39
Thanks for all the replies and links everyone. Back home now so will get some reading done. I have "invested" in a cheap tripod so will have another go soon. Still not sure what kind of photography I want to do as at the moment I want to do everything! Slowly slowly though and hopefully I'll get there.
Hey that's the beauty of photography. You can spend as much or as little time as you want learning new methods. Take your time and take it all in. But most if all enjoy yourself. Remember that you will make mistakes, we all do. Explore things and as you have questions come here for the answers. I literally learned photography this very way.
 
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Nod

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#40
Ros, being a fellow X-T1 user and having dabbled in smoothing running water, I can offer this advice to get as long an exposure (to smooth the water) as possible.
1. Set the ISO to the lowest possible setting (Left hand dial to "L".)
2. Set the aperture on the lens to the smallest aperture possible (slightly confusingly, the highest number on the ring or in the display.)
3. Set the shutter speed dial (Right hand dial, closest to the lens) to "A", like in Matt's posted shot.
4. You already have the exposure compensation dial set to "0".
5. Wait for the light levels to fall enough to allow you a shutter speed (as chosen by the camera, you having basically asked it to give as long an exposure as possible for the available light) of 2 seconds or so. If that doesn't give you enough blur on the water, wait a few more minutes for the light level to drop a bit more.
6. If you have a polarising filter, you can use that as a Neutral Density (ND) filter to reduce the amount of light getting through to the sensor meaning you'll get a longer exposure. You may want to invest in a polariser (you'll need a Circular Polariser rather than the Linear type) anyway since they are possibly the only filter that's all but impossible to replicate in Photoshop or similar. You might also want an ND filter or 2 to extend the exposure in future (loads of threads covering the use and choice of ND filters here!)

Good luck and welcome to TP.
 
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