Originally Posted by TheFlyingCamera
after years of PRACTICE knowing what to do, and what to tell his printer ...
Oh man, I think I unintentionally opened up a can of worms here. It's nice to see a diversity of ways to learn photography. What I'm trying to say is, besides the artistic view, the next thing to learn is to make a good copy or interpetation of what is seen. Basically you want to show what you've seen with your own eyes. Knowing the basic photographic techniques is required. Using analogue (yes it is the right term*) forces you to learn the basics. It's also more tangible, you actually have to put the right film in the camera, set the shutter speed, focus, etcetera. With digital you can autofocus, automatically set the ISO without opening the camera. You don't have to use all the automatic settings, but it's easier and for a noob it doesn't matter that much. You can start digital and shoot for years and not learn a thing about photography. I've met people who do and there are plenty of them with an expensive DSLR and little to no basic knowledge about photography. If a picture doesn't look right, they spend hours photoshopping. If they knew the basics, they didn't have to photoshop afterwards.
*and it is Analogue photography. The information is not translated into zero's and one's. You could say film photography but that wouldn't cover all techniques. You could say non-digital or traditional.
The name of this forum is APUG. What does the A stands for? Should we change the name to NDPUG or FPUG?
Originally Posted by Steven L
i see what you are saying, but to be honest i don't think a basic knowledge of photography is needed as long as the photographs you create
( analogly or numerically ) come out the way you want ... spending hours phottoshoppping or hours in the darkroom burning, dodging or whatever
ends up being the same thing, a manipulated image. i've given up thinking one is better than the other, and just enjoy the ride
while the carpool still stops by my shack.
some people will like to know every detail of how to do something,
others just do whatever it is they are doing.
to be honest, i have seen better images made by a kid who doesn't know his way around a camera, darkroom or computer
than i have out of an adult with all the background and esoteric knowledge workshops, classes and expense can allow.
in the end it doesn't really matter .... manual, automatic ... box camera, dslr ... they just make photographs ..
Give a monkey a typewriter and infinite time and he's going to write an essay eventually.
Give a monkey a computer with a spell checker and infinite time and the essay will be written faster than on a typewriter. That doesn't mean the monkey knows what he's doing and if you would ask him to do it again, he couldn't.
Teach the monkey to read and write and it wouldn't matter if he had a typewriter or a computer or a pencil and some paper.
Perhaps a little to metaphorical but that basically sums it up.
There are always exceptions and there are many ways to learn photography, but I think this is the best way.
Apparently you are unaware that for years you could buy automatic analog cameras that did all the thinking for you as well. It was all automatic, had a motor drive and the only thing you had to do is open the back, put in the film and slide the leader to the other spool.
Originally Posted by Steven L
Your entire theory is absolutely false. You are like someone who doesn't believe in evolution, and after people spend hours explaining it to you and describing how it works you finally say." So it's just as I thought, there is no evolution."
Read the replies here. You may actually learn something.
Last edited by blansky; 06-06-2012 at 10:20 AM. Click to view previous post history.
I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.
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Years ago I worked at a small camera shop, before digital really took off. At that time I told people who wanted to learn photography to buy any camera that would let them make manual adjustments, and to use those adjustments as much as possible. Some people bought (for example) a Nikon FM2 with this advice, but others bought a Nikon N50 so they could have all-auto when they needed it. Nothing wrong with that in my opinion.
In spite of the fact that my job was to sell, sell, sell, I would discourage a customer from buying something really expensive before they had an idea of what they wanted to do - I'd tell them that they didn't want to buy something that might become an expensive paperweight. These days I just tell people that using a manually-set camera will teach them more about photography, whether it is a film camera or a digital camera. I think some people are willing to learn, and others want the machine to do it for them, whether it's film or digital.
the box camera was introduced in the late 1800s, and the majority of people since then have been folks
who have had no experience doing anything but pushing the button and letting kodak do the rest.
while i do realize there is loss of control ( sort of ) by letting kodak do the rest, photography since then
as been kind of dummy-proof. i agree it can be fun to learn the mechanics of how everything works
how developers and light &c react with films and papers but i don't really think knowing all of the things
that happen behind the scenes makes anyone a better photographer, it usually fills their heads up with
all sorts of excess baggage so they can't just notice the world around them and photograph it.
you will read countless threads here on apug of people who do endless film tests
using 5 or 6 different kinds of films/papers and 6 or 7 different developers and development techniques ...
instead of just having a good time and making photographs.
the best way to teach anything is hands on and just doing it, and learning from mistakes ...
although i have heard of some chimps making some killer national geographic photographs ...
(and they were with film )
Last edited by jnanian; 06-06-2012 at 02:57 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Reason: they were, not it was
It's best to learn photography from a competent teacher.
I do read the replies here and I did learn something. Apparantly it is not alowed to have an opinion unless it's the same as your's.
Originally Posted by blansky
Learning is about falling down, getting up, KNOWING WHAT YOU DID WRONG, and try again. If you just fall down, get up and try again, your missing the knowledge of what you did wrong. How can you tell what you did wrong if you don't know the basics? How can you know the basics if you don't know how a camera basically works? The best way IMHO to learn the basics is by visualise every step, choice of film, choise of posure, choice of camera settings. You could do all that with a digital camera, but the knowledge of limited film, longer time to see the endresult (what gives you the time to think about what might have gone wrong), the process up to printing (the basics of Photoshop), gives you a more focussed learning experience than chimping. That is my theory.
Other learning approaches are also good and maybe better, but it doesn't make my theory absolutly false. Just like any other mentioned theories is false.
Or is the right approach to learn with a Digital camera and if you are approved by the secret society of analogue photographers, than you are allowed to use analogue?
What do you mean by 'learn photography'?
I guess I would separate 'learn photography' into two elements: (1) the aesthetic or artistic element and (2) the technical 'hands-on, make a print' element.
Originally Posted by Steven L
If you are talking about (1) things like composition can certainly be learned easier with digital IMO. If you are talking about (2) then obviously the approach depends on your technical interest.
It is certainly possible to master (1) and become a truly great photographer without ever getting your hands wet; it is certainly also possible to master (2) and become a great technician without every really being a great photographer.