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What is snap shot?
I start to wonder if I am really a snapshooter, ratherthan a budding amateur enthusiast..

I enjoy taking photos of my family and 2 year old daughter,and I want the photo to look nice..

I have never been a wedding photographer, but if given thechance, or as a back up wedding photographer, I wouldalso want people to say, "Oh, the photos that Kennethtakes are really nice."I have got my own job, and don't think ever I can generateincome from photography..

When I see bird photos, landscape photos by the great photographerson thisforum, I think "WOW"! But, I have no intent at allto travel just to get more chance to see these "WOW" momentsto capture..

Yet, if I am enjoying a trip with my family, I would appreciateif I could take good photos even in low light, that point and shootsstruggles..

So, do I fit the categories of snap shooter?.

KennethNikon D300 + Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6VR + Nikon 35mm f/2.0 + SB800 Flash..

Comments (16)

I mean no disrespect but please yourself and your friends and family with your work. Take pleasure in doing that well. Look at other photo's you enjoy, compare them with yours, and ask critical questions about the differences. Learn in that way..

Seeking validation from the internet is not likely to be fruitful, there are too many opinions..

Do the best you're able to and enjoy..

Next time you go out with your family for a day try to take photos that tell the story of the day. Consider it an assignment to make a travelogue...

Comment #1

Thanks..

Reason for my question is that if I am really just a snapshooter,then I would not bother with my "lens lust" no more..

I was thinking of getting a Nikon 50mm f/1.4, as it received so muchpraise. The AF-D (older) version, and the lack ofa newer 50mm f/1.4 AF-S versionis good to deter me and keep me waiting for a newer and better one...

Comment #2

IMHO you don't need a lens. You need practice and experience...

Comment #3

Don't think of yourself as a snap shooter. Think of yourself as a photojournalist covering your own life's experience. .

It doesn't hurt if you can add a bit of an artistic touch to help with your story. Sometimes recognizing what you like in someone else's photographs can help you incorporate elements into your photos..

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #4

Mrxdimension wrote:.

IMHO you don't need a lens. You need practice and experience..

I agree. Probably I don't need another lens..

When the D700 was announced, I do feel sad that I have alreadygot the D300. I do like low light ability that posters praise for theD3..

Of course D300 is already better than I am.But I couldn't help but wonder if the 50mm f/1.4 would bring methe same low light advantage:50mm f/1.4 Vs 35mm f/2.0 (1 stop advantage)D700/D3 Vs D300 ???1 stop advantage..

And the 50mm f/1.4 seems to be a bargain..

But again, nothing that flash would not do for me for dim homeindoor lights. Maybe, it's just wanting new toys...

Comment #5

Three articles on topic below will help:Taking Your Photography To The Next Level - George Burrhttp://luminous-landscape.com/essays/next-level.shtmlhttp://luminous-landscape.com/essays/next-level-2.shtmlhttp://luminous-landscape.com/essays/levels3.shtml.

KennethKwok wrote:.

Mrxdimension wrote:.

IMHO you don't need a lens. You need practice and experience..

I agree. Probably I don't need another lens..

Best Wishes, Ajayhttp://picasaweb.google.com/ajay0612Thanks for your time...

Comment #6

I haven't seen your work, and I'm not the best photographer in the world, but here's my take..

A snapshooter would be someone who Xeroxes reality to record events. A photographer would be someone who imagines something and then attempts to create that imagination..

A Snapshooter captures scenes for memory; not a bad thing..

I think you might need to take the time to start learning composition and technique. If that's fun and becomes a passion, you're moving out of the "snapshooter" ranks and learning to become a photographer. Spend time and talk to artist types, not internet gear weenies like many here at this forum. Google photography composition and read those pages. Go to nature workshops, even at your local community college. Attend eco-tours.

Go to musiums. Take an illustration class. Take a lighting class. Take a portrait class or read a portrait book..

Learn and follow the rule of thirds for a month. This rule is meant to be broken sometimes, but try it exclusively for one month. Crop those images at least two ways for a month, keeping in mind the rule of thirds. Crop some vertically..

Buy a sinc cord and take all your flashes with the strobe off the camera for a month. Make sure it's several feet from the camera. Play with distance and power. No need for that sinc cord if you have wireless triggering. Take family portraits this way as well. Learn how to use corners as reflectors.

Learn side lighting for drama. Maybe hang out in the lighting forum. Don't bother with the gear threads..

Create a Favorites folder on your computer for composition based websites. Fill it up. No gear sites allowed..

Use only a prime for a month. Join some forums where they have monthly assignments. Nikoncafe is a good one and not limited to Nikon owners. birdforum.net is another. The Strobist site is another, as well. Put as many images up for critique as you can.

Ask for help from artist types..

As an example, one of my daughter in laws is a full fledged and successful commercial artist. I email many of what I think are my best to her, regularly. She is not a photographer and doesn't want to be. I ask her for honest opinions and she now gives that to me. She recently told me that my work is markedly better than a year ago. She sometimes hurts my feelings on what I think is an Ansel Adams wonderpiece, but that's ok.



Getting Better by Thom Hogan - http://www.bythom.com/gettingbetter.htm.

What's your Goal by Thom Hogan - http://www.bythom.com/goal.htm.

How to make great Photographs by Ken Rockwell -http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/howto.htm.

People put down Ken, but some of his writing is spot on, IMO..

Hope this helps. Remember, it's merely my opinion..

Cheers, Craig..

Comment #7

Again, no disrespect intended, but you seem to be a gear collector, at heart..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700, Sony R1, Nikon D300HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/'Experience: Discovering that a claw hammer will bend nails.Epiphany: Discovering that a claw hammer is two tools...'..

Comment #8

Chuxter wrote:.

Again, no disrespect intended, but you seem to be a gear collector,at heart..

Aren't we all?.

I'm gonna have to sell some of this stuff so I can buy more stuff! Mummm, more stuff!..

Comment #9

Here is the real deal: photo vs. snapshot..

According to so-called "professionals" on this or on any other board, a photo is taken using an SLR camera costing above $1000; a "snapshot" on the other hand is taken (and is considered to be one) with a P&S or one of those 1 time use film cameras..

You see to get to the level of a pro you have to walk around with a lens that dangles on your shoulder like a 2nd male you-know-what. You have to focus by turning the ring, stand in a bend over position with your legs spread like you are taking a bathroom break, change the ISO, aperture, shutter speed, and probably the lens as you forgot that you were shooting insects with a macro lens and now need a prime for your models..

Those who walk around with a small P&S in their shirt pocket must never ever consider their snapshots "photographs"...

Comment #10

Ken, there are several ways to improve your photography, which I believe is the real heart of your question. Chief of which is to master the "rule of thirds." This is a photo composition technique where you draw imaginary tic tac toe lines on the image you're trying to capture and line up your subject where lines intersect. This technique will make your pictures alot more interesting..

Secondly, get into the habit of pre-focusing and panning with the action. That way you can grab a shot at a split second's notice without losing it or getting a blurry photo. You simply press the shutter half-way down to pre-focus and keep it there while your recompose your picture. If your subject moves, re-focus..

Lastly, you could shoot with a flash, even in day light. It'll make your subject "pop" in the photo.James DeRuvoDigital Camera HQhttp://www.digitalcamera-hq.com..

Comment #11

One usually has a subject that is being recorded (a view, a living being, or an object)..

Just making a recording of the subject w/o thought to the light, or the placement of the subject in the frame, or as to what else is included in the frame that might give or take away from the subject's presentation in the image, I'd think would be a snapshot..

Not all snapped shots are snapshots, though..

Still, it's photography..

...Bob, NYC.

Galleries: http://www.pbase.com/btullis.

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Comment #12

Yes, I think part of myself is gear collector.I *want* my gear to be as good as, and certainly no worse than others.Yet, comparing mine to the professional gears of the nice posters here,I don't think my gears are up to your (e.g. D3) standard yet.E.g. The D700 sounds really good, but also really too expensive formy non-professional use..

Still, I switched to DSLR when my baby girl knows how to walk around.The digicam cannot capture my daugher's expression no more..

Yet, if a tiny small digicam can do as good a job as my D300 + 18-200mmOR 35mm/2, I would gladly use and enjoy the ultra slim and compact smalldigicam.If they are same quality, I would not want the more expensive and biggerand heavier gear..

By the way, how does your Sony R1 compare?One of the earliest bigger sensor non-SLR.

Kenneth.

Chuxter wrote:.

Again, no disrespect intended, but you seem to be a gear collector,at heart..

Charlie Davis..

Comment #13

Would you elaborate on the Tic Tac Toe?Sounds like a good method..

Daytime fill flash: very interesting.Actually, I just started using it.And last week, I realized/ just started decreasing the"flash compensation" so the faces are better seen, but notso overly bright.I know this sounds very primary school to all of you, butI am having a lot of fun with the Nikon D300 and SB800.I suppose Point and shoot would not have this flashcompensation value function..

Kenneth.

James DeRuvo DHQ wrote:.

Ken, there are several ways to improve your photography, which Ibelieve is the real heart of your question. Chief of which is tomaster the "rule of thirds." This is a photo composition techniquewhere you draw imaginary tic tac toe lines on the image you're tryingto capture and line up your subject where lines intersect. Thistechnique will make your pictures alot more interesting..

Secondly, get into the habit of pre-focusing and panning with theaction. That way you can grab a shot at a split second's noticewithout losing it or getting a blurry photo. You simply press theshutter half-way down to pre-focus and keep it there while yourrecompose your picture. If your subject moves, re-focus..

Lastly, you could shoot with a flash, even in day light. It'll makeyour subject "pop" in the photo.James DeRuvoDigital Camera HQhttp://www.digitalcamera-hq.com..

Comment #14

Hi,.

It's a shooter's expression for a shot taken at a bird that was "grabbed" as we say and I mean shooting with a shotgun and not a camera but it's easy to see how the expression was taken over..

Regards, David..

Comment #15

KennethKwok wrote:.

Yes, I think part of myself is gear collector.I *want* my gear to be as good as, and certainly no worse than others.Yet, comparing mine to the professional gears of the nice posters here,I don't think my gears are up to your (e.g. D3) standard yet.E.g. The D700 sounds really good, but also really too expensive formy non-professional use..

Still, I switched to DSLR when my baby girl knows how to walk around.The digicam cannot capture my daugher's expression no more..

Yet, if a tiny small digicam can do as good a job as my D300 + 18-200mmOR 35mm/2, I would gladly use and enjoy the ultra slim and compact smalldigicam.If they are same quality, I would not want the more expensive and biggerand heavier gear..

By the way, how does your Sony R1 compare?One of the earliest bigger sensor non-SLR.

The R1 is different. It's a hybrid in many ways...looks like a dSLR/works like a non-dSLR. Actually, SONY designed it to be their first dSLR (before KM buyout). It's what I call an "eSLR", which is a step towards the mythical EVIL camera..

It's lens is superb...as good as anything I know of with similar range and speed. The IQ is quite good. If I set my D300 at ISO 200 and the R1 at ISO 160 (these are the base ISO settings of both cameras) I can't tell the difference...if the light is good. In dim light, the D300 has lower noise..

The AF on the R1 is OK in good light, but quite slow in dim light..

The "Live View" on the R1 is wonderful. In contrast, the LV on the D300 is awkward, but it works...slowly. Contrast AF on the D300 is like molasses!.

The placement of the LCD on the R1 is the best there is...and it flips and twists! I wish it had the bigger, high-rez screen on the D300!.

Each camera has it's uses. The R1 is wonderful for landscapes and portraits...situations where the photographer thinks, then shoots. In contrast, the D300 is wonderful for low-light sports...heck, any action pix...situations where the photographer has to react w/o thinking..

Kenneth.

Chuxter wrote:.

Again, no disrespect intended, but you seem to be a gear collector,at heart..

Charlie Davis.

Charlie DavisNikon 5700, Sony R1, Nikon D300HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/'Experience: Discovering that a claw hammer will bend nails.Epiphany: Discovering that a claw hammer is two tools...'..

Comment #16

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