Digital Photography Lessons

Digital vs Film Wedding Photography

Which medium should a wedding photographer use when it comes to digital vs film photography for weddings?

It’s an argument that’s fading, gasping its last breath as the use of camera film dies a slow, quiet death.

It’s something I’m asked about less frequently these days but for some brides and their photographers, it’s still a valid debate. For old-school photographers, Kodak or Fujifilm is still a viable option to offer couples searching for that “certain look” that emulsion can have. But for the newbies in the photographic industry, digital is the only way to go. Films aren’t their speciality even if they’re trained in it at all.

What really matters is that a couple like their photographer’s style, not what format they used to capture the images. And, when you get right down to it, the differences between the two mediums aren’t really visible to the untrained eye. That’s right, you heard me — if the lighting is right, there is no debate between the two. It looks the same.

When the lighting conditions start to deteriorate, that’s when the an images’ texture and pattern can look ‘grainier’, which, occasionally, is the evocative look a bride wants. Both can offer these characteristics but with the advent of high quality digitized cameras with wider ISO settings, this aspect it is easier to control. With both media, post production editing makes it possible to achieve virtually any effect you desire.

If that’s the case, then why consider roll-film photography at all? There are a few reasons a photographer might offer film as an option to a couple.

  1. Some photographers truly believe that it gives a higher quality print.
  2. At the end of an event, the photographer is done. The photo lab takes care of color balance adjustments and retouching; the photographer doesn’t have to worry about correcting computer files.
  3. Technically speaking, film has a wider dynamic range than digital for high-contrast scenes.
  4. Film photography is a creative and funny entertainment for couple and their guests.

But for every positive argument for film, the micro-chip comes roaring back with its own strong suit.

  1. Many photographers consider themselves artists, and with that, they don’t want the photo lab to be in control of the final product.
  2. Shooting digitally, a photographer is able to shoot many more frames, meaning the couple probably will have a more complete coverage of their event.
  3. There’s less risk for poor quality photos because the photographer can immediately review and correct an image that didn’t quite turn out the way it was planned.

Despite the advantages for each medium, they’re all moot points if the bride or groom doesn’t like the photographer’s portfolio in the first place!

As with anything else, there’s going to be good photographers and not-so-good photographers, and it doesn’t really make much of a difference which medium the not-so-good photographers shoot in.

Select a photographer who will give you the best images you could hope for, and the media argument doesn’t really matter.

If you want my advice – choose today’s technology – you’ll get a wider coverage of your day! 

Use Digital Photography Courses To Build Your Knowledge

Digital photography courses are able to take the unpracticed amateur to the same level as the trained professional, as long as that amateur is prepared to go through the intense training which is necessary to achieve that standard. There are many amateurs who do not have the desire to reach that exalted level, but just a desire to get the best results from their camera without expending too much time. This can also be achieved, as there are both online and offline courses aimed at every level of photographer.

The first important principle you will learn on a digital photography course is that there are few fundamental differences between the techniques used in new photography and those used in the past. The way in which the camera operates at the most basic level is little changed, as the shutter still allows light into the mechanism which has been designed to capture it. It is the manipulation which is possible with digital photographs which sets them apart, and the best results will be achieved from this manipulation when the initial photograph has been taken in the most effective way. The techniques of taking effective photographs are never to be overlooked, even if you have powerful software.

You will also need to learn how to effectively manage a portfolio of your own photographs, and this does require very different techniques from managing and storing analog photographs. A digital photograph, just like any other file, needs to be cataloged with a numbering system, or file management system, to allow you to find it easily again whenever you need to. If you are taking photographs on many different subjects, the best system will be one which starts with these categories. You will also need to learn the vitally important skill of backing up your files.

The major focus of digital photography courses will be the manipulation of the images which have been taken, as it is this which separates digital technology from the previous film based era. There is now the potential for photographers to correct common errors such as red eye, which can completely ruin photographs which can never be taken again. The tool which is used for these repairs is known as Adobe Photoshop, and it is certainly not cheap software at over $500. It will, however, allow you to get the best possible results from your endeavors, as long as you can spare the time to learn to use it properly.

It is possible to use free software to carry out some limited enhancements to digital photographs, and this free software can even open Photoshop files if it has the right plug in attached. You will not have the same range of options that you would get with the paid version, but you may not need them if you are only going to be carrying out limited edits. It may also be useful to learn what you can do with the free software before taking the step of investing in anything better, because then you will have a greater understanding of how effective the paid software will be.

There are many digital photography courses to be found online, and many of these can be sampled for free. They will not be as comprehensive as the paid materials, and they will certainly not show you the techniques in as great a detail as you would get from a paid offline course. They can be especially useful for absolute beginners who want to give themselves something of an edge when they go to take on more comprehensive digital photography courses.

How Digital Photography Lessons Can Benefit The Student

Digital photography lessons are available in many different forms, both through online learning and through offline resources such as college courses. The right course for you will largely depend on your own ambitions in the photography field, and whether or not they include any ambitions to become a professional. Some photography jobs demand a high standard of formal education, and are virtually impossible to enter without the right college course, while others can be entered by anyone who has the necessary skills.

If the lessons are to be comprehensive enough to allow the complete beginner to achieve a high standard, they will need to start with the fundamentals of how a photograph needs to be taken in the first place. This is not as simple as it sounds, and there is little fundamental different between the front end of a digital camera and one which has been made in the previous era of film cameras. The shutter still operates in the same way, to pull light into the mechanism which processes the photograph. Any tradition wisdom you have from previous experiences with film cameras will still be perfectly valid. There are many useful tips which can reduce the need to rely on modern software.

The lessons which you take should give you the confidence to shoot in different lighting conditions, and to take photographs whenever the opportunity presents itself. Photographers who specialize in still subjects are able to choose the optimum conditions for the photograph to be taken, but those who are seeking to take action shots do not have that luxury. The are still ways to create an image which is more easily edited, and the great advantage of digital photography is that this editing is easily possible. Editing is still more effective if you can produce a quality photograph to work with at the start.

Taking digital photography lessons will allow you to understand and use the complex industry standard software which manipulates digital images, and which can create virtually any effect that the photographer chooses. This is Adobe Photoshop, and it is not cheap or easy to use. You will need to be prepared to spend upwards of $500 on this complete state of the art solution, but it will be the only photograph manipulation program you will ever need. You will have the ability to correct obvious errors, as well as to enhance the result with effects.

It is not absolutely necessary to own this software, or to know how to use it, if you are only seeking to take photographs for your own purposes. There are other free software programs which can give you some of the functionality of Photoshop, including Paint.NET, which will allow you to open Photoshop files, as long as you have a certain plug in to go with it. Amateur photographers can still produce reasonable results without having to go to the extreme of buying software which will probably be more expensive than the camera itself.

Although digital photography lessons should be complete by themselves, there is never any harm in giving yourself an advantage by reading up on the subject in advance. There are many resources online which can give you graphic illustrations of what is possible with modern digital photography, and in some cases you can even attempt to manipulate photographs yourself through an online interface. Don’t try to learn too much too soon, but do give yourself the best possible chance by laying a foundation for the courses to come. You can them hit the ground running and gain the greatest advantage from your digital photography lessons.