Digital Photography 101


Lesson Info


So let's, talk a little bit about lenses. Okay, now, this is really getting into the d slr digital, single lens reflex world of the cameras with interchangeable lenses. Some of the newer cameras now say, like he's little, this is a mirror lis camera it's a little bit bigger than, say, these little compact cameras here, but what they do is it's a mirror elissa, meaning it doesn't have that mirror inside of it, like a single lens reflex reflex camera does so it's kind of more compact that way, and the viewfinder that you're looking through is actually an electronic if you find her just like on a compact camera. So it's elektronik viewfinder here, you're not really looking through here and seeing things like you would on a dslr camera it's a little more compact, it's something newer that's going on right now, and they have interchangeable lenses kind of a cool thing, but it's all still relatively new aa lot of the camera manufacturers, they're coming out with their own versions of it. The...

y have different size sensors and different ones. So it's something to kind of watch because a lot of people are talking about those cameras sort of becoming the next new thing, as opposed to digital slr ours, something more to considers you've got compact cameras the mirror lis camera and then you've got the digital slr xcx but I'm just going to stick to right now the digital slr the basics about the lenses so we are going to be covering that tomorrow but I thought having a nice visual beforehand would be good so you should kind of get a better understanding and maybe you could, you know, pull out your lens or your camera and kind of look at that as I'm working through this to see what is it exactly that you have? I know when I first purchase my camera and years ago and it came with two lenses I think and I wasn't even sure what I had I said one short ones long that's all I know and I take pictures with him and that's true, some are short and some are long and you can take pictures with them but there's more to it than that and the more you know about it the better you'll be at capturing the pictures that you want so for instance, here I have three lenses the one on the left is much longer lens it's called a telephoto lens because it actually zooms from telephoto zoom lens it's long and that its telephoto but it zooms from seventy millimeters to two hundred millimeters and that's how you measure focal length so if you ever see something on your lenses, says mm that stands that represents the focal length of the lens and I'm going to show you some examples the lens right next to it is a fifty millimeter lens and that's called a couple different things one it's a standard or normal lens and I'm going to show you some examples that so why we call it that it's one focal length it just says fifty millimeters on it and that means that when you're taking photographs if you have that on your camera or we're gonna have to if you want to get in closer to someone you have to physically get in closer to someone if you want to get back away you've got to physically get farther away whereas with the lens to the left of that the zoom lens I can just zoom in and out and change my angle of view on my subject. In other words, it seems like I'm getting closer to them or we're moving farther away and then the next lens next to it well that's a wide angle lens and I'm going to show you some examples of that and that's also a zoom lens but it's considered wide angle it's sixteen to thirty five millimeters so I'm going to show you a sample of what that looks like so here's a telephoto zoom lens it's that first lines I showed you and it's kind of an expensive lens I want I think when I first bought one, it was maybe thirteen hundred dollars or something like that, so it gets a little spendy. A lot of sports photographers like to use this lens portrait photographers like to use it too, but it's something that you may want to graduate to eventually, you know, it's a lot of money, but it's, it gives you some nice photographs and here's. What happens when you use one of these telephoto lenses? That's also considered a fast lens. I'm going to describe what that means to oh, but first off, if you're standing, what I'm doing is I'm standing beneath the men had a beach pier. I know I have so many pictures of the manhattan beach period think I never go anywhere also it's a great place to take photos, so I'm doing a little test, I'm standing in one spot and I have my friends standing in another spot. Neither one of us are moving at all for these pictures samples, I'm about to show you so he's standing there, I'm standing back here and all I'm doing is changing the lens. So this is what it looks like when you photograph someone with a long telephoto zoom lens, I'm probably zoomed all the way out to two hundred millimeters, so that's the longest the lens will we'll go and what that does is it helps you seem like you get closer to someone, but it also compresses space and it helps you blur out that background. This is another way to teo make backgrounds like nice and soft and that shallow depth of field okay, so this is using a telephoto zoom lens and their other zoom lenses you don't have to get this zoom lens, there are lots of them that you know we're one hundred two hundred three hundred four hundred I mean, you'll see those sports photographers taking photographs you've seen them at the sports games, they've got like a model pod, which is this one stick and then they've got this huge long lens and that lets him get in really close so all the sports that they're photographing but this is one thing I like to use reports because it makes people look great. In fact, I've been to fashion photo shoots where the photographer is like all the way over here and the models were way over there and they're having to talk on walkie talkies so he can tell the model what to do and maybe there's assistant near the model because here she can't hear the photographer they're so far away, but they look fantastic and that's that's really a tip if you ever want to make someone look really good in a photograph use a longer the longest part of the zoom lens that you can I'll show you example in a minute for smith to get through these lenses. All right, so remember, I'm standing beneath the pier. I'm in the same place, he's in the same place. Now I've changed lenses now I'm using a standard fifty millimeter lens. Now they call it a standard or normal lens, because in essence, that's kind of how we see the world that's sort of our view of through these human eyeballs here, of the perspective of the angle of view that we see things, because if you look back at this picture that's not really how we see if I'm looking at you that's not how I see you right now, it's, not that blurry behind you, but this looks kind of more is the optics of our own eye and fifty millimeters is a great standard of lens to start with and play around with. Right now I'm changing lenses, and now I just put a wide angle lens of my camera again. I have not moved, but it sure looks like I have, doesn't it? It really kind of opens up the space, and this is a great lends to use if you love to take pictures of landscapes. Or if you just want to appear in small spaces and want to make them look larger, maybe your real estate agent take a picture of a room and get the whole thing because that angle of view is now wider, and I'm taking in more information. I made a big mistake once I went on a trip and I was packing lenses the night before I was trying to be, you know, judicious about everything I was taking with me. And they have all these wait restrictions now. So I somehow left out my wide angle lens. What a mistake could you imagine going to europe and seeing beautiful castles and buildings and things and not being able to take it all in? All I had was like one. I think I brought a telephoto in a macro and something else I have, like, all these telephoto shots, you know of things, but I didn't have any wide angle shots, just I was kicking myself. So now I always bring a wide angle lens with me when I'm traveling, because I want to take in all that information. Another thing that wide angle lenses do, which is kind of me, is they they come because of the optics, they help you capture a deeper depth of field. Meaning that things are more in focus from near to far so you don't see that kind of blurred out effect that you saw on the first lens that long telephoto lens here everything looks pretty much in focus, so, um, that works out great if you want to capture everything in the background too. So that's the different perspectives are angles of you that you can capture when you're changing your lens and that's. Why, if you're just getting into photography and maybe you've purchased, you're thinking of purchasing a dslr it's a good idea to think about ok, I may want to start with, you know, maybe the kit lens that camp that comes with it is I'm going to show you that right here is usually an eighteen to fifty five millimeter focal length lens and the reason I have the red circle around it this is a cannon lens on some lenses. This is located in different places, but if you're wondering what your lenses this is, what you want to look for is the number's probably on the bottom somewhere near the the little cap with e m and after it so that's going to represent the focal length of the lens now this is they call it the kit lens, oftentimes because it's what comes in the kit with the first camera that you purchase and it's a good starter lens there's nothing wrong with it there's some good things about it actually it's usually less expensive in its light there is not as much glass involved with ease and it also has something called a variable aperture which I'm going to explain in a minute which will affect how your photographs on turnout so faster slow I remember being at a nev ent once when I first started out in photography and these photographers were having a photographer conversation and they kept saying I've got a really fast winds and how fast is your lens and I'm like fast but what do you mean fast that's what has to take pictures fast? I don't know what you mean so here's what it means basically your lens has an aperture on it so if you have the kit lands that I just showed you back here this eighteen to fifty five millimeter lens that is a good starter lens it has something called a variable aperture and what that allows you to d'oh is take great shots but you can on lee use a neff stop on your camera the f stop aperture setting that's limited by the lens we're going to try to kind of break this down so for instance, the variable aperture on that lens on the lens barrel and I'll show you where that's located too it's going to say three point five dash five point six most likely and that means that the aperture can very depending on whether you have the lens zoomed all the way out to its longest focal length, are zoomed back to its widest focal length, and this will weaken work through this, too, if you have one of those lenses, or you may try this out there, if you take a shot and you set your aperture setting to let's, say three point five, because that's, the widest aperture setting this lens will allow you to make could have it on your camera, and then try zooming it out and see what happens. It will just change the aperture setting for you, because that's all the lens khun d'oh, a fixed aperture say like a lens that's f two eights, and I'll show you a picture of that means that your your aperture setting is oh, it always stays fixed. It's not going to change on you. You can keep it it f two eight if that's what you want, those lenses air more expensive, more glass heavier to carry around. So here's an example of a lens where the aperture is three point five to five point six, and the where the place it's, located on this lens, is up on top near the glass and that's where that red circle is. So if you have a lens, you might take it out and look at it and see if it's located there it could also be depending on the maker it might be located down near the bottom I'll show you an example that too then again this focal length is eighteen to fifty five and I'm just showing this because this is often what what most people start with thie f stops on the lens are indicated infractions so this is what you might see on the lens it may not say f it will say one colon three point five dash five point six that's what that strange combination of numbers means it's just representing the aperture available on that lens so if you have a nick on lenz um that's where things are all located on kind of the bottom there altogether so here it says eighteen to fifty five millimeters for the focal length and then it talks about what the aperture possibility is where the aperture is with this lens and you'll see that one with the colon and then three point five dash five point six so what's the numbers but just so you know what they are and know what you have no, what you're working with no, what your possibilities are and know what the limitations are any questions about that? Because I know that's that's something that that can get a little confusing when you're first just starting out and I know it was for me when I was first starting out because I didn't even know what I had it was like too much to handle just take the picture already I don't know whatever those numbers are, but then in time you want to know that wow, I want to take a picture with the wide aperture and I can't seem to do that with this this lens so what do I do next? So then at least you know what the progression needs to be and you can start saving your money to purchase the next lens because as we talked about photography can be an expensive endeavor it doesn't have to be just like I showed you before you could be using tissue paper but um it's all it's all what's going on appear you know as far as what you want to create what you want to do with it so just clarification and for a fixed aperture lens that doesn't mean that you can't change the aperture in the land when you're taking a picture is that correct? That's correct yeah and that could be a little misleading so that's that's a good question that just means that the you can go to that wide of a nap return no matter how far your zoomed in correct yes so basically that aperture won't change unless you want it tio so it's, kind of we should come up with a new term for that, right? It's not fixed it's uh, I don't know what I wanted to be. I have the same thing when I first started buying lenses and I was like, wait, so I can't change it, but I want to use other and yeah, I know cause confusion, it really is a confusing time, it is fixed sounds so permanent let's talk a little bit about filters, and I'm not going to get there so much that we can talk about about filters but filter so there's little things that screw on at the end of your lens, and maybe if someone maybe gave you a camera, you purchased one of the camera store and I said, oh, you need to buy a filter ah, uv filter to put over the lens and that's the and this picture here, it's, the one on top, the one that's kind of clear, and the uv filters are for filtering out uv light, but it's also pretty protecting the glass of your lens. So if you were to scratch the front of a filter, it would not be as expensive to replace as your lens, and so a lot of people just use them is protective devices, but then there's also there are a lot of people out there that feel that I don't want that in front of my glass on my lens. I don't want anything else that might possibly obstruct you know what I'm trying to capture so there's two schools of thought for that, you know, take it as you will. I still get a little nervous when I don't have my uv filter on just to protect the glass, especially on my more expensive ones is now some of these other filters, you can use filters, and this is often what was used in film photography because we didn't have the bonus of doing the white balance, so we had to use filters that could warn things up, cool things down, and the darker filter is a polarizing filter, and that often can help you deal with reflections on glass. Anyone have polarized sunglasses, you know how great those are? If you're out like a beach and you've got that really bright light reflecting on you, it really helps with that reflections, but polarizing filters will help you with it will make the skies darker blue. It will help with reflections on water and glass it's kind of nice thing to have, but if you want to get when you need to know what size do you need? How do I know what size I need and there's something called a lens diameter that's another number that you have to look at on your lens? Where is that? Well, look on your lens and see if you can find it you might see the symbol here and that indicates the diameter that you want for your lens I mean different diameters at sixty to seventy two it all depends on the lens itself, you know? So I've got different lenses I've gotta look on here and say ok, you know, this is a seventy seven I'll show you this lens here it's a seventy seven and that's what I wanted to look for if let's say I'm on amazon and I want to buy it filter I don't know what size to get because they're not all the same so that's the indicator that you want to look for and so I recommend if you're just going to get started it's good to get a zoom lens, whatever it is just whatever you can afford get some kind of zoom lens you can easily zoom in zoom out and also this is something fun and it's very affordable it's like around one hundred dollars it's nicknamed the nifty fifty it's a plastic e lynn so it's not a super high end lens but it gives you a great effect what it has is an aperture of f one eight that's a really wardo picture and that means you can really help blow out those backgrounds and creates a beautiful shots. So it's a great lens no matter which camera have cannon or an icon it's a great lends to start with if you're on a budget and you just want to try things out and really experiment with shooting with a wide open aperture pretty groovy lens and this is kind of my parting shot here if you want to make people look good and photographs and or you want to look good in a photograph whenever you hold a camera up into someone's face, you know if they're like that far away whatever is close to this land is going to look bigger it's going to look distorted look att my friend victoria here pretty girl but the picture on the left looks like she has kind of a big nose and that's because I'm kind of in closed to her to fill the frame with her face right? Don't do that. What you want to dio is give yourself room to zoom that's what they call it ruined a zoom so back up and then zoom in with your telephoto to fill the frame and capture that shot because that is going to make people look so much better remember I was talking about that telephoto lens the longer lens compresses space and it's, just a much more flattering perspective. So if you ever see a photograph of yourself and think, I look better than that, why does my nose looks so big or whatever is closer to can, or what does that look so big? You know, you tell someone you know, room to zoom and tell them to use their telephoto, to zoom in, fill the frame and capture the shot. You do the same and everyone's going to look fabulous, and they'll all be happy. And think your a great photographer, because you are.

Class Description

Are you ready to start taking amazing digital images? Join award-winning photographer Erin Manning for a three-day introduction to the fundamentals of digital photography — frustration-free.

Whether you take pictures with your phone, a point-and-shoot digital camera, or a DSLR, Erin will give you the tools you need to capture beautiful digital images. You’ll learn about light and exposure, including how to work with and modify your on-camera flash. You’ll learn about common errors beginning photographers make and develop strategies for troubleshooting. Erin will also guide you through the basics of digital image editing and sharing your images online.

By the end of Digital Photography 101, you’ll have the creative and practical skills to create, edit, and share stunning digital images.



Good basic or "refresher" course.