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Help improving my skills

MattK 6 63 United Kingdom
28 Jan 2012 8:32PM
Hi everyone,

I am new to photography (had a DSLR for a couple of months) and would like some feedback on my portfolio to see where I can improve my technique and how I can better my skills.

I know my photos are pretty poor compared to a lot of you pro's on here but any feedback is welcomed as I would like to keep progressing.I am reading tutorials and books as well as eyeing up courses but nothing is like having good old fashioned peer reviews!

Any comments are welcome whether it be regarding composition, techniques, editing, lighting etc.

Thanks to anyone that takes time to look Smile

Matt Grin

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gary_d 10 576 13 Wales
28 Jan 2012 8:44PM
You have come to the right place as there are so many knowledgeable and very helpful folk on this site, I am not one of the clever ones but if there is anything I can help with feel free to ask.
gary_d 10 576 13 Wales
28 Jan 2012 8:47PM
Upload to the critique gallery for honest and helpful feedback from the clever folk in the critique team.
MattK 6 63 United Kingdom
28 Jan 2012 9:01PM
Thank you Gary. This site has been fantastic and people like you who are so willing to help is why I chose to join this site - people here are brilliant.

I didn't know about the critique gallery. I will have a look and start uploading some.

I look at photos on this site and some are incredible - the quality of "amateur" togs on here is extremely high.

One thing I would like to ask is what the depth of field button does on my camera? I press it but I can't seem to make out what it actually does! Can't find my manual so you may be able to shed some light!

Pete Plus
17 18.8k 97 England
28 Jan 2012 9:20PM
Welcome to ephotozine Gary. This article I wrote may help depth of field explained
martin.w 16 522 22 United Kingdom
28 Jan 2012 9:30PM
When pressed the Depth of Field button shows what is in focus when you look through the viewfinder. For wide apertures, f4 for instance the viewfinder shoes a slightly darker image, but it is possible to use it.....but when at the other end of the scale, f22 the viewfinder goes very dark when using the Dof button....making it very hard to see anything. I rarely use it nowadays, as most of my work is Landscapes I can usually work out which bit I want in focus, but it can be very useful for portraits or close up (macro) work.

User_Removed 14 17.9k 8 Norway
28 Jan 2012 9:31PM
In turn.

This will also be of immense help.

Welcome to 'EPZ' Matt.

Ade_Osman 15 4.5k 36 England
28 Jan 2012 9:38PM
You may also find this Camera Simulator of some help too, if you need help understanding DOF and such things.....

Welcome to EPZ, I'll try and keep an eye out for your work and make a few comments....

cameracat 14 8.6k 61 Norfolk Island
28 Jan 2012 9:48PM

Quote:compared to a lot of you pro's

LOL....Smile Welcome Matt, See you have met some of the guys/gals already......Smile

First thing to remember, We are not all Pro's.....Grin Just people who like photography......Smile

Second thing to remember, We all had to start somewhere.....Grin So never be afraid to ask, Also that critique or comments you might get, Will generally be a giude line, Not neccesarily one for you to follow, Thats optional and up to you.

Whatever ePHOTOzine is a great place to learn, Sadly not everyone is like yourself, Those who bother to comment or critique images, Often get " Snotty " PM's ( Personal Messages ) for our troubles, But thankfully there are more who want to learn, Seeing people progress and become happier and more confident with thier work as a result of thier efforts and good advise from other members, Is what its all about.........Grin

Hang on to that thought and enjoy the ride......Wink
MattK 6 63 United Kingdom
28 Jan 2012 10:29PM
Wow thank you everyone! Mike, Ade, Pete and Martin - your help with DOF has given me lots to go and read up on to improve my understanding so thank you.

Cameracat - it is really pleasing to be part of a site with so many people willing to help each other and I'm grateful for all the help and positive comments so far. I'm amazed by the standard of work produced by "amateurs" who like you said just "enjoy photography"!

I feel like I'm learning a lot and this site is the biggest reason why. It's fantastic! Just looking through all of your portfolios gives me ideas and inspiration to experiment and try new things Smile

Thanks Smile

Graflex 15 488 United Kingdom
29 Jan 2012 10:10AM
Pretty poor,rubbish...
You have some great pictures there...
Never put yourself down...

A tip try concentrating more on humans-a very difficult thing to master but once you have,be proud.

We all start somewhere in life.

MattK 6 63 United Kingdom
30 Jan 2012 10:01AM
Thanks Graflex that has given me a nice boost of confidence this morning! Smile

I love street photography and taking photos of people. I find people fascinating but it can be hard to do well. I also feel a bit cautious in case someone takes real offence to me taking their photo - I don't want to look like a weirdo with a camera just taking photos of people as they may get suspicious of me?

Leilani 13 29 3 England
31 Jan 2012 12:03AM
Hello Matt Smile was just perusing the forum for something interesting to read and came across your thread.

We aren't all pro's, some are just mad rebellious enthusiasts...oh that's just me Wink

I have had my dslr for 4 years now, and still learning and no doubt will til my grave. At the end of the day it depends on your objective, are you wanting to be like the pro's or someone who takes a brilliant less structured/composed photo? Never had a snotty pm though, plenty of lovely ones Smile

Don't be put discouraged by no votes (not that you need to worry), or minimal votes it's not a measure of the photo but of many factors. Many people only vote around their photos, so they may not see your photo. Some don't bother voting or commenting on others, they just expect their work to get noticed (their ego orientated ones I am not fond of). Others take the time to go through all images if not most of the day, every day and comment and they are dedicated and uplifting souls, bless everyone of them! Smile

Anyway, that's just a tip that I have found helps me get noticed, boost my confidence and guides me not only to what people like but what people don't and it appears my photos appeal more to the men folk than the ladies! Hey ho Smile

Keep up the good work Smile
Loren Smile
MattK 6 63 United Kingdom
31 Jan 2012 9:11AM
Thanks Loren Smile

I don't aim to be a pro although it would be incredible to be that good that I could make a living from it! And as for being a mad rebellious enthusiast you do have some fantastic images in your portfolio (just went and paid a visit!) Tongue

I haven't had any snotty PM's yet either and am really pleased with how encouraging and supportive you lovely people are on this forum!

I am one of those people who just sits for ages looking through all the photos as there are some incredibly talented people on here who have some great portfolios. It is great to see so many different styles.

I do get a bit hung up on votes I guess as I see that as the sole measure of how good my photos are on here - but I guess you are right. There are so many factors that affect it and as long as you are happy with your shots then all is well. I am enjoying the learning curve and by the sounds of it that wont stop Grin

Thanks for commenting and the advice

Matt Grin
Graflex 15 488 United Kingdom
31 Jan 2012 5:55PM
You might find the odd one or two complain,especially in London,perhaps on the most wanted list or a local nutter,but in general people don't mind being photographed,you are on public land and in a public place.

Summer coming up,Matt,get around to all those events,look,watch...press the shutter.Great fun.


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