Instructive photography examples?
January 17, 2010 7:39 AM   Subscribe

I am new to digital photography and I am looking for instructive examples of technique. Ideally this would be a regularly updated website/flickr pool/forum where people post pictures with an explanation of how/why they took the shot, including technical info (aperture, shutter speed, ISO, etc.).

I've looked through lots of the other photography questions here and learned a lot about the basics of exposure (for anyone else looking later, the single best reference was the exposure lessons series on stopshootingauto) but now I'm looking for something a little more loose, where I can just browse through photos, see what appeals to me, and then see how they got the shot. I've also started digging through flickr groups but have not yet found any where people regularly post the exposure info or thoughts on framing/lighting/etc. Thanks in advance.
posted by hihowareyou to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 56 users marked this as a favorite
There are a couple of more technical forums that I occasionally look into such as Luminous Landscape and DPReview. I've linked to the forum pages at both sites. Strobist might also be interesting although I haven't spent much time there as I pretty much only shoot available light.

But, a lot of this will depend on what type of photography you are interested in learning more about. Studio or flash lighting setups will differ substantially to available light shooting as will the discussions around them.
posted by michswiss at 8:10 AM on January 17, 2010

On Flickr, after clicking on a photo -- if you look on the right-hand side underneath "additional information" there's a little line that says "more properties." This will tell you exposure, aperture, shutter speed, iso.

Alternatively, I've found good luck by simply posting when I find a style that I would like to emulate. Something like "I really love the way you took this fireworks shot. Can you explain your settings?" usually will provoke a good response.
posted by melodykramer at 8:22 AM on January 17, 2010

Craig Tanner's Daily Critique videos/podcasts are really amazing for their comprehensive look at a single shot over over several minutes of critique. He also covers ways to improve each photo in post-production.
posted by cowbellemoo at 9:22 AM on January 17, 2010

Seconding Luminous Landscape, and I'd like to add which I find absolutely invaluable.

Also, find a local photo club, join their forums and attend their events. I started learning in the fall, and all of the above have helped me immensely.

Also I recommend starting a blog, even if no one reads it but you. The ability to go back and look at where you were and where you are now is very rewarding.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 9:48 AM on January 17, 2010

I think Digital Photography School would be perfect for you. It has lots of great articles on the basics fo many different kinds of photography, with examples, and critique posts. Also, The Online Photographer is probably my very favorite photography site on the web, with notes on gear, technique, and photography philosophy.
posted by dantekgeek at 10:06 AM on January 17, 2010

here are some of my daily reads:

- On using strobs : Strobist
- Everything Canon : The digital picture
- Everything Canon #2 : canon rumors
- Forum : thephotoforum
- Online courses: yanik

Flickr and Dpreview are also a good start of course.
posted by Bio11 at 10:07 AM on January 17, 2010

I almost forgot Caliber, and their Flickr Group dedicated to commenting on and discussing members work.
posted by dantekgeek at 10:08 AM on January 17, 2010

Cambridge in Color Digital Photography Tips uses visual tutorials that emphasize concept over procedure, independent of specific digital camera or lens. Topics range from basic to advanced.
posted by netbros at 11:34 AM on January 17, 2010

I put up a small website a while back where I do a little bit of that discussion. In addition, I'll make this offer to any Metafiltarian: Find a photo that interests you in one of my Flickr sets and ask me about it there, and I'll do my best to satisfy your technical curiosities :)
posted by pjern at 2:00 PM on January 17, 2010

Response by poster: Thanks everyone for the suggestions, I will spend some time poking around all of those sites. FWIW at this point, I am exclusively interested in natural/available light photography. My subject matter is a mix of urban (NYC), nature (Central park & vacations), and people (mostly at parties/bars). I am using a Panasonic GF1 with the 20mm lens. Thanks again!
posted by hihowareyou at 7:44 AM on January 18, 2010

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