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DPChallenge Forums >> Tips, Tricks, and Q&A >> Questions about getting started?
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02/16/2006 02:14:34 PM · #1
I am a brand new hobby photographer. I am going to start doing these challenges, and I am going to search out contests around my area. Is my camera good enough for hobby photgraphy? Are there any upgrades I should get? What size CF card should I get? I have a tiny one now, and I keep running out of room! What is RAW? What is the fastest and most effecient way to download pics, erase the ones that didn't work, save to disk, etc? What is the best way to learn about all the fun things to do in Photoshop? How long does it take you (on average) for your pic to go from shot to ready to post? It seems to take me a long time to get through all the steps.
Thanks, I look forward to reading the answers. :)
02/16/2006 02:21:11 PM · #2
So many questions. Great enthusiasm.

G3 is a great camera for hobby photography.

When the G3 was my only camera the largest card I used was a 256MB. Shooting jpg you'll get plenty of images on the card. If you start shooting RAW then a 512 or 1GB should be plenty.

RAW is the data captured by the sensor without any in camera processing like saturation, sharpening etc. It is also uncompressed. jpeg is compressed and has in camera processing like saturation, sharpening etc.

It depends on the image how much time it takes from upload to post. As you get better and more knowledgable you'll find you spend less time in post processing.

02/16/2006 02:44:44 PM · #3
Well I can't tell you anything about the camera, but I think for any camera more memory is better. 256MB-1GB should be enough for any kind of hobby photography. Transferring pics to your computer is easy, but organising them is pretty time consuming. If you don't do it regularly, pretty soon you'll be stuck with a zillion folders and files with total chaos. Photoshop takes time, but with practice, you'll be able to breeze through the normal day-to-day stuff which every photograph needs, like levels, saturation/contrast adjustments etc. More difficult things in Photoshop, like knowing how to blend layers to perfection, probably requires a few hundred years or so ;-)
02/16/2006 03:01:14 PM · #4
Have a look in the manual but most give a guess at how large each image might be for low res, high res, RAW e.t.c. Most cameras this will only be a guess/average because it changes depending on what is in the pic (although some cameras have fixed size files - Canon is normally variable size I believe).

RAW will be much larger than JPG but because it contains what was captured, it gives you more room to get a better image. It might help save an image if you get the wrong white balance or something as some things are adjustable in RAW that are already cast in JPG. It also adds work as the RAW files must be converted (think developed) into a JPG file for printing/viewing on the web.

Download: Get a card reader.
CF Card: Get larger than you think :) There is usually a price point that makes sense (there comes a point that double the storage cost a lot more than double the price).
How Long: Depends on the image and the use of it - a snap shot I spend a few seconds on and then generate the web-ready size. Something I stick in a frame longer.
Photoshop: Google - there are lots of sites out there with step-by-steps. It's a never ending tool I find but I am far far from knowing even what all the stuff does :-(

Message edited by author 2006-02-16 15:05:58.
02/16/2006 03:32:10 PM · #5
1. Is camera good enough?
Answer: G3 Camera Scores

2. 1 GB is a good size

3. Raw is a altogether different file that is larger, stores uncompressed image info/data. You can alter details like exposure, white balance, etc. and not lose any image quality. I personally don't use it, but that is the future.

4. There are programs out there that organize photos. They are called browsers/organizers. You pay for those. I do the old fashioned way and simply connect to computer, download, go thru image by image, and cut/paste into new folder with better description (date, subject, location)

5. Best way to learn photoshop stuff is by searching DPC forum threads. Google of course. And just post specific inquiries to DPC'ers and they will probably have some great places to start. Here are a few from me....Photoshop #1 Photoshop #2

6. Never less than 20 mins. Sometimes as much as 1 hour. But like writing a draft, I like to do some basic stuff and maybe come back to it later and see what I like and don't like and then finish it.

Hope that helps....
02/16/2006 03:53:26 PM · #6
Get IrfanView. It's free.
02/17/2006 08:13:25 PM · #7
Thanks!!
SO, is Infranview an organizer?
I am going to get a 256 or 512 mb card, a reader and a second battery. And I will keep plugging away at Photoshop. :)
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