So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and get involved in photography! You’ve seen amazing pictures that your friends and family have taken whilst on holiday and you want to get in on it. But where do you start? What camera do you buy, and should you buy a new lens? Protective equipment? What are you going to take photos of? There are a lot of questions that need answering, but if you keep reading you’ll find those answers and get you started on your journey to beginner photography.
Beginner cameras come in two different forms, DSLRs and Mirrorless DSLRs. DSLR stands for Digital Single Lens Reflex, which is just a fancy way of saying that it doesn’t use photographic film! Regular DSLRs are big bulky cameras that are more complex as they have a plethora of different modes for you to choose from. They often give better picture quality than a mirrorless but these also have their advantages.
Mirrorless DSLRs don’t use the prism mirror that normal DSLRs do. They have the image sensor exposed directly to the light which means that they are better for taking videos but not actual photographs. But by removing this optical viewfinder, they make up for it in many ways. For example, they are dramatically smaller in size and weight. Perfect to bring to any adventure, and why I got myself a Sony mirrorless camera.
Blogs like fuji photographer have an excellent, more technical comparison to learn more about what’s best for you.
When starting photography, you have to think of what you’re going to be taking photos of, and how you’re going to be taking them. You’re going to be in the environments that you’re taking photos of, so you have to have the appropriate clothing and protection gear.
A very common thing that photographers across the world invest in is kneepads and kneeling mats. To steady a camera you often have to be on one knee, or perhaps you’re going to be taking a photo of something that is low down. So, photographers often end up on their knees.
Knees are weak parts of the body and are incredibly susceptible to damage, so you have to look after them. Not to mention that if you are in an uncomfortable position it can completely ruin your shot!
We’ve all heard of lens aperture, but what actually is it? For starters, it decides what kind of lens you should buy. Aperture is the size of the whole that light travels through when you’re using a lens. It dictates the depth of field for a photograph, giving you the ability to blur certain parts of your photo or sharpen others. This can take beginner photography to the next level really quickly.
Why is this important you might ask? Well, all lenses have different maximum and minimum aperture values, which obviously determines what you can and can’t focus on. You’ll want to make your choice of lens based off of these values. The larger it is the more you’ll be able to focus on and change the depth of the photograph, the smaller the value the less you can focus on. This is where you can get creative and add style to a photograph. Your lens has to suit your purpose, so think carefully before you buy one.
If you take all of these things into consideration, you’ll be off to a brilliant start. You’ll have the right clothing and equipment to make sure that you can be as comfortable as possible so you can focus on taking your shots instead of on how much your knee hurts. You’ll have the right lens that will have the aperture range that you need. And you’ll have the right sized camera for you.
Of course, you’re going to want to take pictures of some very interesting things, and the way a lot of people do this is by traveling abroad, so here are some inspirational ideas of where to go!