In the sixth and final installment in this series of beginners landscape articles, Martin Pettinger looks at how simply reading your camera manual thouroughly can improve your pictures.
Last weekend I
took my youngest children to the local play park. It is
a breezy Autumn day and on the way to the park I collected a couple of
striking leaves and called on a local amateur photographer - George.
Now George is partially disabled and cannot get out too much, in the
local photography club and they are having a competition called natures
George - sellotape these on your window and take a macro shot with your
” I suggest.
the closest my
camera will focus is about 4 feet - we tried it at the camera club last
week and that’s the closest it will go
Anyway I ask
for the manual and point out that it will go as close as 4”
(And this is the vital bit) you have the camera set at wide angle.
George had been trying to use macro and telephoto at the same time.
you’re here I cannot find the self timer or how to bracket my
Again using the manual I show George how to set the camera for the self
timer and for bracketing which is essential as his camera
have a histogram. Now George has read his manual but only a little bit
is in English and the main stuff is on a CD which is no use to George
as he doesn't own a computer.
Now George is really pleased as in 10 minutes I have shown him how to
get as close as 4 inches for macro shots, I have shown him the self
timer - which is essential as he has a disability and he can now
bracket his exposures. My next challenge is to teach George how to
meter manually with his camera as it has a spot meter feature. Your
challenge like mine is to check your camera manual - to date I still
haven’t used bracketing but there has been times when I
Like my previous article on equipment - there’s always a
temptation to want a 'better' camera when the features you
need are actually in the camera you own or another technique will yield
'better' pictures. Oh and those leaves I stuck them on my
own windows much to the puzzlement of my wife. The image of a leaf is one of the frames I took.