January 19, 2008

Digital SLR Photography Basics / Photos

I've owned a Canon Digital Rebel Xti For nearly an year. It's a pretty good digital SLR and I purchased a 28-135mm lens separately from the lens kit. However, all these days, I've only used the auto mode - as if I were using a regular digital camera (I also own a SONY DSC 3.2MP which is several years old and works great).

The point of using a SLR is to be able to take advantage of the lens and photography techniques..I never had the time and never bothered. Recently, the photo bug bit me and today, for the first time, I sat and tried a few techniques. Part of the thanks goes to a friend at INSEAD who took a small class teaching us the basics.

A few lessons -

  1. Use the RAW mode to save images - it preserves all image characteristics and you can use your PC to save it as JPG if you want, or spice it up using a photo imaging software.
  2. Learn to use the AV and TV modes (in Canon. In Nikon I heard they're called A and T) - effectively controlling aperture or shutter speed. Aperture (F on the LCD) is your friend.
  3. Use something like Adobe photoshop to make your photos look like what you want. In the examples below, I wanted to get a grainy dark look, and I accomplished that using Adobe photoshop CS3.
  4. More blur => lower F and vice versa. More aperture value => more light without flash but greater chances of shake.

Click the images to see in larger size.

I will be traveling soon and next time, I hope to get some cool photos. Don't forget to go with at least 2-4 GB cards or you'll run out of memory.

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