That was my sentiment as recently as this past Friday.
Then it all changed the next day.
As I mentioned in a previous post, my wife's Christmas gift to me was a gift certificate for an educational session with a local photographer. I had that session on Saturday and all I can say is that I will never use the "Auto" function on my camera again.
Tony Granata, the photographer I met with, immediately changed the way I look at the "art" of photography. We met in his basement/studio where I was surrounded by an endless number of cameras and his stunning photographs:
His passion was obvious from the get-go and I couldn't wait to get started. To have a one-on-one session with someone who obviously knows their stuff had me so pumped.
As I'm sure many of you are aware, the "Exposure Triangle" neatly sums up what photography is all about:
Now I could have read about this in a book or on-line but what made this session so valuable, was Tony demonstrated each of these concepts on his camera as we were reviewing each one. He even showed me functions on my camera (Canon PowerShot SX20IS) that I never knew existed. You don't get that attention to detail in a larger classroom setting.
I was especially struck by shooting in aperture mode, which in simple terms for me, was "depth of field". With gardening photography, there are moments where I'd want to photograph a flower up close and blur the background, hence a larger aperture like f/2.8 (that's for you Tony to show I picked up on this stuff):
Other times, I struggle to shoot a garden as a whole without "noise" but I now know how to shoot using a smaller aperture. Good times.
I'm still digesting five points of light, SLR photography and how to affect exposure through the +/- button, but the foundation is there. Now it is time for me to go out and shoot and tinker like mad. I've already started to look back on old photos to see what I did right (completely through luck) and what I did wrong. My mind has been opened up like never before and I have Tony to thank for that.
Some more info on Tony Granata photography:
Google+ profile: https://plus.google.com/111911561121271030359/about
So Sunday I played around a bit and tried to capture an ornamental grass in all its wonderful swaying glory. Here are three of the same shots with the different settings indicated below the photo:
ISO 200, Shutter Speed 1/500, Aperture F/5.0
ISO 80, Shutter Speed 1/40, Aperture F/8.0, Exposure changed -1 1/3
ISO 80, Shutter Speed 1/125, Aperture f/8.0, Exposure changed -1 1/3
I still have a long ways to go to fully grasp all of this but it has opened the door to creativity and I'm ready to jump the f through.