Dear Editor, just starting photography…

Just starting photography |

If you are just starting photography then an entry level DSLR is a great way to start. They offer a great range of functions and excellent quality.

Dear Editor

I am just starting photography and I’ve purchased a new entry level DSLR. I hope I have done the right thing for someone just getting started? Any tips on what I should do to get my photography going?

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Entry level – great for starting photography

There is no need to over extend yourself when starting photography. Modern entry level cameras are full of functions. They are also really adaptable. You will have a camera with scope for personal skill development and great results. If you are just starting photography for a hobby there is nothing better.

Nikon, Canon, Sony and others provide great options. They are reasonably priced so you can get to know your photographic interests for two or three years. After that you can upgrade with confidence knowing more about what you want to do. Many people stick with these cameras too. They have proved themselves appropriate for a wide range of interests.

An entry level camera will provide you with the functions you need in several ways. Modern entry level quality and digital image sensor size is far superior to even a few years ago. You will get great quality pictures. You also have all the functions and modes you need to learn photography properly.

These cameras are great for trying out different things. That’s important when starting photography. There is little point in buying a high end camera for lots of money. You will end up using few of the functions and may not be buying something suitable for you. It is better to start with a camera designed for your growing ability. You will find plenty of scope for extending your skills! So, well done on your new entry level purchase.

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As to tips, here are ideas for starting photography…

There are a few simple things that will help you develop your photography. Try out these and other ideas and your hobby will be really engaging.

  1. Spend time with your camera every day. Your photography will not progress unless you do photography as much as possible. That means you must practice. The best way to do that is to take pictures and see how you can improve on them.
  2. When developing your skills it helps a lot to positive comments. If possible join a camera club near you. You will find they are pretty friendly and will help you learn new skills. Composition of a good photograph is important. Working with other photogs helps you get comments on essential composition skills.
  3. Initially you will just want to have fun making photos. Especially concentrate on things you have an interest or passion for already. Your photos will be more exciting to you (and others) if you focus on an existing interest. If you love flowers, get great at photographing them. If you love fashion do that. If you love something more obscure, don’t worry what other people think. It’s your interest, just do what you want. I have a friend who, when starting photography, spent a lot of time photographing chimneys. He had great fun!
  4. Making great images is something that comes with practice and thinking about what you are doing. So reading stuff online really helps. You will quickly find you learn the words and phrases that help you to develop an understanding. Use your reading to help you learn about various functions on your camera. Try to read your manual before using a new one. Then look up things you do not know on websites like Photokonnexion. Check out our Photographic Glossary for definitions, articles and resources.
  5. I often recommend that people starting photography join an online community. You get great feedback on your pictures and can share your fears and problems as well as your ideas and creativity. It helps you to learn and you will make new friends. I recommend I post there as “Netkonnexion“. It is a great place to make friends and have a go. Put up a photo a day and let others comment. Follow other people and comment on their pictures. There are fun games, weekly “Top 20”, discussions and a “Recently Popular” page. People help you through getting started. Everyone there started like you. I have lots of friends there. I still post regularly and keep up with my friends. is free, with an inexpensive “pro” option that gives you extras. The Pro version includes an online photo-editor.
  6. When starting photography photogs often think they don’t need to learn the background to good photography. So they never progress beyond “auto-settings”. To produce great pictures learn about your camera settings. Find out about the Exposure Triangle too. Clubs and online community members will help you to use your settings properly. You can quickly get control of your camera. It’s more creative than just snapping pictures. It’s also worth thinking ahead about what you want your picture to be. Picture how you want the final image to turn out. Then set up the camera to achieve it. Don’t rely on the camera to make auto-choices. On “auto” you just end up with average shots.
  7. Owning a camera is about making pictures. It is also about getting the picture you want. So it is worth thinking about image editing. You will be able to remove an offending sweet wrapper you did not notice. Or improve the colour for the final print or screen shot. Most pictures need a little editing. So getting started on editing early is worth while. Then you can really make your pictures pop!
Starting photography is easy…

I have written these suggestions in the order you should think about them. You may not get to number seven straight away. but, you will learn a lot along the way. As you do, you will gain some wonderful insights. So have fun and enjoy your photography.

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Damon Guy - Netkonnexion

Damon Guy (Netkonnexion)

Damon is a writer-photographer and editor of this site. He has run some major websites, a computing department and a digital image library. He started out as a trained teacher and now runs training for digital photogs.
See also: Editors ‘Bio’.
By Damon Guy see his profile on Google+.

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