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Old 11-25-2011, 11:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Advice: Where To Start?

I am quite interested in photography and cinematography, however I have no idea where to start. I know the price tag on this hobby can start to add up very quickly, and before I jump in, and realize I have $5000 of tools I'll never use I would like to give it a try. What would be a good camera to start with? I don't want anything too expensive and I want it durable. As far as a POV camera I'm pretty set on a GoPro Hero2. What is a good video editing software? I know Sony Vegas Pro is good, however I don't want to dump a grand on something I may not use, or something I'll only use a small portion of. Also any tips for a beginner photographer would be much appreciated.
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Old 11-25-2011, 11:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Personally I don't do video (yet) but can offer some advice on the photography side of things, how much are you looking to spend on a camera?
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Old 11-26-2011, 09:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't want to spend much more than $300. In what little camera research I've done, I've been able to find what
i believe are decent cameras but I honestly have no idea.
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Old 11-26-2011, 10:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Do you mean specifically doing snowboarding videos, or just photography in general?

If the latter, my daughter owns a cheapo digital camera and she's still able to take pictures that indicate she's got talent in this area (I just point and shoot). Same principle applies though, even if you're going to do snowboarding stuff. Buy the cheapest piece of crap you can get and just see if you enjoy it and have talent. If so, it's time to invest.
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Old 11-26-2011, 11:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Good luck finding a nice DSLR with a lense for $300 or less. I'm not saying you can't do it, I'm just saying good luck. I've been looking for one for the last few months and still haven't found a deal I can afford. Craigslist will be your friend in finding one though.
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Old 11-26-2011, 12:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donutz View Post
Do you mean specifically doing snowboarding videos, or just photography in general?

If the latter, my daughter owns a cheapo digital camera and she's still able to take pictures that indicate she's got talent in this area (I just point and shoot). Same principle applies though, even if you're going to do snowboarding stuff. Buy the cheapest piece of crap you can get and just see if you enjoy it and have talent. If so, it's time to invest.
Photography in general, however, I do want to focus on action sport photography, that's what interests me the most. It would be nice to have a general skill in the area and some knowledge in cameras on what i'm about to buy. So far i have learned faster shutter speed = less blur, also learned that I don't know shit when it comes to cameras.

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Good luck finding a nice DSLR with a lense for $300 or less. I'm not saying you can't do it, I'm just saying good luck. I've been looking for one for the last few months and still haven't found a deal I can afford. Craigslist will be your friend in finding one though.
I don't think I want a DSLR yet. I'm thinking more just a fairly decent camera right now. If its something that i don't like then I won't have wasted too much time or money.

Also any tips on quality editing software that won't cost me an arm and a leg, something simple and easy to use, but not so simple that it's pointless.
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Old 11-26-2011, 12:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The point I was trying to make though is that you have to determine if you have the talent for it. Anyone can point a camera and press a button. I'm in that category. But with someone who has the 'feel' for composition and framing, the pictures they take are simply more interesting in some way that I can't describe. Maybe get a book on photography that goes into detail on this. Figure out if it makes sense to you, if you can do it, and if it's interesting enough to keep at. In my personal experience, I've had enthusiasms for different things (guitar for one) only to discover that I had no talent (in some cases negative talent -- I'd actually lower the total talent in the room ). Best to find out before you start spending the big bucks.
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Old 11-26-2011, 12:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Use GIMP. It's free and just as good as Adobe Photoshop. That's the best low cost photo editing software I know. Honestly though, the best pics IMO are un-edited. Any point-and-shoot you buy will not be as good as a DSLR for taking action photos, but there are proficient ones available. Look at the newer Sony Cybershots, or the Fuji FinePix. Just make sure they are newer and not older. I am just becoming familiar with DSLR's since I have spent the last quarter taking a photojournalism class. There is a lot more than just shutter speed that goes into getting a good shot. And sometimes, a little blur isn't a bad thing. It can give the photo a feeling of motion where it otherwise looks motionless. It's all about how you do it though. Just get a camera and start shooting. Then you'll be able to develop your own style of photos. You'll also learn what you like and dislike, and what does, and doesn't work.
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Old 11-26-2011, 03:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Donohoe View Post
I don't want to spend much more than $300. In what little camera research I've done, I've been able to find what
i believe are decent cameras but I honestly have no idea.
Post up the cameras you're looking at.

As far as what you said about shutter speed, yes. The shorter the exposure the less handshake that will cause blur, but not as much light is let in. This is why we use tripods when doing long exposures of waterfalls and such, it really can't be done when your shutter is open for, say 10 seconds. You can't keep your hands/camera perfectly still for that long.

Faster shutter:
timseydell's deviantART gallery

Long exposure:
timseydell's deviantART gallery

About cheaper DSLR's you might want to check out the Canon XT or what I use) XTi. They are both older, but I love my XTi and use it all the time (shown in photos above). If you're looking to do the sequencing photos you see in snowboard magazines, you're going to need something with a faster FPS than the aforementioned cameras and it's going to cost you quite a bit more.

I don't know how legit this site is, but they have the Canon T3 DSLR for $365.00 right now.

CameraPromo.com - Canon EOS Rebel T3, 12.2 Megapixel, Digital SLR Camera w/ Canon 18-55mm IS II Lens Kit

A really good site with a TON of camera reviews is Digital Camera Product Reviews: Digital Photography Review

GIMP is most certainly a great program. One of the things I always tell people is once you get a camera go to a zoo. I know it's not action sports photography, but it will give you opportunities, everything from action shots to setting up for a photo of an animal where you can try it from all different angles and compositions. Sign up for one of the free online photo hosting sites too. I use Deviant Art and you can request ideas from other people who view your photos on what to change, what to do differently, etc.

Last edited by Deviant; 11-26-2011 at 03:43 PM.
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Old 11-26-2011, 04:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you guys so much, has anyone read or heard of a good book with photography information? And where i could find it. I'll be going to barns and noble in the future and I can do some looking there. And thanks for the the tips guys my knowledge has already increased double fold haha. Thanks for the links on camera reviews and photos. I do have a question about exposure however. Does the longer exposure make the colors more vibrant compared to the shorter exposure which looks more clear? Not sure if i'm noticing the right things lol.

Also side note:
If those pictures are yours, bravo those are beautiful pieces of art. Especially liked the waterfall picture the colors in that were amazing.

Yet Another Side Note:
I was looking at the Samsung Lumix FH-5 to start off. It looks like a decent camera without a hefty price tag. My brother has the FH-7, which is basically the same just it has a touch screen, and he can produce pretty decent pictures. I figure this will be a good camera to start out with, without being too in over my head.

Last edited by The Donohoe; 11-26-2011 at 05:38 PM. Reason: Found New Info
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