Topic: Want to learn how to use the features on this camera?
June 26, 2019 / By Chloe Question:
My freshmen year of high school, I picked up a 1970s-era Pentax SLR at a garage sale for the photography course I got stuck in. I ended up really enjoying it, was pretty good at it, and used the schools photo lab after school door the remainder of high school to develop pictures. Once I graduated, and didn't have acess to a photo lab anymore/time to mess with that, i just switched to using regular digital cameras. I've been wanting one of the nice digital SLRs for years, since you don't have to have a photo lab available to work with pictures, but they're just so expensive.
Anyways, I guess my husband found a really good deal on a hardly ever used Canon EOS 20D, and bought it for me for Christmas. It was a professional photographers backup camera, so it didn't get used very much, and is in great shape, all the original instruction guides, CDs, a case, and a very nice upgraded lense. I know it's an older camera (he said about 5 years old), but it's perfect for me and what I'm going to be doing with it. However, it's a whole lot more advanced than any camera I've ever used, and quite frankly, I've forgotten much of what I learned back in high school on using manual features of any camera. Anyone have any good recommendations of books or websites on digital photography?
Not so much basic photography skills, as the things this camera might be capable of that my old one wasn't. For instance, it came with a upgraded lens that has image stabilization. Does that mean the possibility of longer exposure times in lower light situations I wouldn't be able to use a tripod in? Or what about using filters? I have to order a conversion ring to make my Tiffin filters I had for my old camera fit this cameras lens, but I'm so curious if it will be different with digital vs. Film. Same thing with my fish-eye attachment (have to order a conversion ring for that too), will it effect a digital photo differently than a film photo? These are the sort of things I'm looking for, how to maximize the capacity of this cameras abilities.
Astra | 2 days ago
Fotoace is totally correct. All the principles and basics are the same between digital and film. I think the best thing to help you is to take plenty of quality time for yourself, sit down with the owner's manual AND the camera, and really study what it tells you about the camera. The owner's manual is your number one BEST source for learning the CAMERA. No other book is going to be specific to THAT CAMERA, and I feel that is where you are feeling somewhat lost. I have no doubt it seems rather daunting compared do your old film SLR.
There are a couple of things with the digital SLR that are NOT related to film cameras.
One is the WHITE BALANCE control. This effectively eliminates the need for any color correction filters that were used with film. No more 80b or FLD and such. You change the white balance to compensate for different lighting types. Ideally, you need to learn to use a white balance tool in the scene and use RAW processing to target the tool and set the correct white balance. You can also learn how to do an in camera custom white balance at the time of shooting.
Another "newbie" to digital as compared to film is the HISTOGRAM. This is a graphic display of where exposure levels fall within a shot. This is one of the single greatest advantages of using a digital camera.
Also, on the fly ISO adjustment is another great advantage of digital. You are no longer locked into one film ISO, but can change it at will as needed.
Much, if not all, of this type of thing should be explained in your owners manual. Yes, there are some things to learn about digital that do not transfer over from film, but much of it is "bells and whistles" kinds of things. The basics are all the same.
if you Google "photography tips" there's a lot of neat pages.
as far as the camera it should have a manual override and then an auto switch (abrv. MF or AF) if its on AF it will focus and take the best picture it can and do all the work for you. if you want to manually do it (adjusting the lens to get different focus and depth) then switch it to MF.
I never took a course I just learned by messing around with things and figuring it out on my way. Hope this helps. Happy picture taking! :)
The book "Understanding Exposure" will be a great refresher for the manual control of Shutter Speed, Aperture and ISO.
The "Canon EOS 20D Field Guide" would be something that lays out all the controls and settings specific to your camera.