About Me

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Event and Street Photographer who leads by the Spirit of God and loves to capture the moment in life either in door or on the street.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A Photographer Journey - Part 2

I am back again continue from my previous post "A Photographer Journey Part 1" which ended with a statement "Now I want a Canon 60D instead of A Nikon D5100".

Ego and Self Evaluation
That statement shows not so good thing about me at that time. It show my stupid ego is sky high and self evaluation on my photography experience was too high which is far above my real self. I do not even know how to crawl, how can I walk. I know nothing of driving and yet I want a Honda. I know nothing of photography and yet I want to jump to the intermediate level camera in Canon 60D. That's real suck.
I believe most beginner did the same mistake.
My friends, realistic self-evaluation is very important in photography especially if you are a slow learner or lazy to read or learn new things fast. Please note that this is an expensive hobby.

Search, Read and Learn
Eventhough my dream camera is still not in my hand, I am keeping myself busy searching, reading and learning about camera and photography. I roamed the internet daily searching for good articles like a hungry dog looking for food. I am really hungry for information which I read, digest and evaluate.
These are some of the site that help me for information.
1. Ken Rockwell - A very good site for information on tools (Camera and lens) review and photography as an art.
 Please keep an open mind, let your mind be as a sponge.
2. dpreview.com - A very good site for information on tools (camera and lens) review
3. Camera Labs - A very good site for information on tools review, photography tips and etc
4. National Geographic-Jim-Richardson-Photography - A good place to great photos and good articles

In the meantime, I also enrolled in Scripture Study at St Ignatius Church, Petaling Jaya. Actually I have posted most of my earlier blog using my Olympus uTough 8010 which include the Maranatha Retreat with Fr Ignatius Huan.

Canon 60D or Nikon D7000
I know the time will come when my Financial Controller will approve my purchase of new upgraded camera. But my camera target change again as I have gained more information on camera and their level in photography tools. How could I compare a Canon 60D with Nikon D5100? It's not apple to apple comparison. Thus I bring in Nikon D7000 into my selections. The down side is I have to do a new marketing proposal to my Financial Controller (wife).
She looks at me in the eyes and said, "Ok, how much?"
I am almost there but I have to roam the street for the best price for both of these camera, from Petaling Jaya to Low Yat. I got the good price in Digital Mall, Petaling Jaya but I keep it to myself until the right time.
By now you should know it's not cheap to invest in photography and the camera that I want is not cheap either. I remind myself to let my wife makes the first more and I use that 'move' to make the kill.
I wait and wait and wait...be patience.

A day before Malaysia Merdeka Day (National Day) 2011
It's a holiday and my Financial Controller is in a joyful mood. As we walk at One Utama, she popped up the question which I am longing to hear, the 'move' that I have being waiting with patience.
She turn to me and ask, "Do you want to buy your camera or not?"
My heart pump like crazy but I control my joy with a fun smile and said, "Sure! Can! Can!"
I answer as if I am afraid she changes her mind in that split second.
But which camera brand.....
My mind works fast and Jim Richardson, the National Geographic's phographer comes to my mind. He is using a Nikon camera and I want to be like him wearing the same hat. But my wife rejected the hat idea.
I told my wife, I want a Nikon D7000 with Tamron 18-200mm.
When we arrived at Digital Mall, section 14, Petaling Jaya, we were put fort with both cameras but my mind had been fixed with Nikon.
As for the lens, once again I change the lens to Sigma DC 18-200mm instead of Tamron. I still wonder why I changed.
Now this lens is safely kept in my camera box with two packet of silica gel until further notice.
My wife said, "Don't sell, just keep it."

First shooting with Nikon D7000
What do you expect from my first shoot? And When?
I forgot to tell you that I always carry one of my camera around in my pouch or my trousers pocket daily wherever I go.
Earlier on my trusted Olympus UTough 8010 was always in my front trousers pocket but now my pouch will be filled with my Nikon D7000. Heavy but worth carrying daily.

That same evening on August 30th 2011, we headed for I-City, Shah Alam.
I have to learn real fast and as we drive to Shah Alam,
my wife ask, "You know how to use the camera or not?
My confident kicked in and I said, "Sure! I will try my best."
The truth, I knew only the theory of the camera by reading on the website.
No hand on instruction.
I flip the pages of the camera manual as Superman did and expect to know something on the operation of this new tools.
Here are some of those photos. (Battery not yet charge but can operate with limited time)

My First shot at Digital Mall, Sect 14, Petaling Jaya. She is my FC and my wife. This shot is to test the camera and it's lens.

My first shot at I-City, during this time i do not know how to change setting to lighten the foreground image  and everything is on Auto. (I just bought this camera a few hours ago.)
As my mind is looking for answers, I think why not try the build-in flash.

Read and Shoot
Early morning on August 31st, 2011, my photography adventure start with Read the Camera Manual and go out Shoot as many shots as I can. I just can not wait for the day to come and wake up and shoot.

This is one of my bonsai after the rain.
I always ask myself, "If I change this what will happen?"

This is one of my Water Jasmine blooming after the rain.

I normally shoot around 300 to 400 shots per day to to get myself familiar with the camera setting and most of the important camera function.

It took me a week to digest the manual and be familiar with the camera buttons and function.

Beside this on the spiritual side, I have made a promise with God to use this camera D7000 for his glory. During the first week nothing happen yet but I know something is coming because once I promise with God things will definitely happen. I ask and it will happen that is how my relationship with God. But certain favours, I ask but never happen. Maybe I ask the things not conform to His will. Be patience!!

Taking that promise in account, I have to learn photography and the camera operation real fast because I do not know when He calls me for His service.

What is coming my way? How I handle it?

That is another story and time to share.

Final advice:
1. Be honest with your self regarding your photography experience.
2. Ask around for more information on the camera you want.
3. Determine the usage of your camera. This factor will decide the lens you need.
4. Be a well informed buyer. Do not waste money on the things you do not need. In my case, Sigma DC 18-200mm.
5. Be the best you can in photography and set yourself a target. My target is 5 years to be good in photography.
6. Determine what is your inclination or your desire in photography. You can not be everything. It's very expensive hobby. If you want to be a event photographer, buy an event lens. If you want to shot bird, buy a telephoto lens. If you want to shoot macro, buy a macro lens. But a prime lens is a must buy lens.

I am an event photo taker and I am using Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 VC (I choose this because Nikkor lens cost MYR 4900-5K while Tamron cost me MYR 1770 with filter. If you have extra money, get a Nikkor lens.) with a Nikkor AF-S 50mm f/1.8G. My zoom is my legs. That's all, I need. Save money and have fun.

Last but not the least, I have made the stupid mistake and I hope you will be more informed.

Have a great weekend, my friend.

(To be continue)

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