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Newbie question about learning B&W photography - Photography

I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of you might have on learning black and white photography in general. I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more dramatic, sensual, and mysterious... My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a variety of situations... primarily architecture and people to start... I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it.. I'll get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo. The first thing I've done is to ...

  1. #1

    Default Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of you
    might have on learning black and white photography in general.

    I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more dramatic,
    sensual, and mysterious...

    My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a variety of
    situations... primarily architecture and people to start...

    I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it.. I'll
    get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo.

    The first thing I've done is to get Creative Camera Control by Peter laytin
    and have read that twice. I am going to start taking photos this week and
    trying different things... I do not have a light meter as of yet, but
    should have one, (and a decent flash), by weeks end.

    I have also found a good photographic reatiler that offers classes, but as
    of now there is not a beginners class scheduled...

    I can't seem to find much, (via internet or yellow pages), on groups in the
    area.

    Anyone have suggestions?

    Thanks.

    Danny Anderson
    Kansas City


    Danny Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    You're going to need a spot meter and do some film testing.
    Randall Ainsworth Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    "Danny" <danderson31kc.rr.com> wrote in
    news:tHqQa.212553$Xl.3595154twister.rdc-kc.rr.com:
    > I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of
    > you might have on learning black and white photography in general.
    >
    > I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more
    > dramatic, sensual, and mysterious...
    >
    > My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a
    > variety of situations... primarily architecture and people to
    > start...
    >
    > I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it..
    > I'll get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo.
    >
    > The first thing I've done is to get Creative Camera Control by Peter
    > laytin and have read that twice. I am going to start taking photos
    > this week and trying different things... I do not have a light
    > meter as of yet, but should have one, (and a decent flash), by weeks
    > end.
    Your canon will have all the light meter you'll ever need.
    If you want to really understand B&W photography, read The Negative and The
    Print by A.Adams.
    Those books explain the basics, and if you understand the basics, you can
    do anything.

    Jon Pike Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Before I get some smart pointing out that a 10% spot meter and a 10%
    partila spot are 1 in trhe same thing, I know, i just got keyboard hicups.

    Brian................................


    "Brian" <brian5blueyonder.co.uk> wrote in message
    news:ihzQa.7379$qf3.4303news-binary.blueyonder.co.uk...
    > B&W is an excellent medium to start off with, its so easy to develop and
    > print your own work, and a lot of fun. there are plenty of books
    available,
    > but my recomendations would be
    >
    > Basic Photography by Michael Langford . ISBN 0-240-51592-7
    > The Darkroom Handbook by MIchael Langford . ISBN 0-85233-188-1
    >
    > and for a little heavier reading, the Ansel Adams set of books.
    >
    > The Camera ISBN 0-8212-2184-1
    > The Negative ISBN 0-8212-2186-8
    > The Print ISBN 0-8212-2187-6
    >
    > These books will help you decide what you want to do and how you want to
    go
    > about it.
    >
    > Try your local adult education college, there should be one that has a
    > photography course, the benefits of this are that they usually have their
    > own darkrooms and chemicals.
    >
    > The Elan 7 Already has and good light meter built in ,with Evaluative
    > metering, Center weighted metering and a 10% partial meter linked to the
    > focus points and a 10% spot meter included, and flsah metering , why
    would
    > you need to spend more money on a meter you dont need at the moment, once
    > you have grasped the basics , you can then decide whether or not you need
    a
    > seperate meter, but hold onto your money for the time being, or buy a nice
    > started darkroom kit, it will pay for itself in no time.But if you have
    your
    > heart set on a meter, the you have to decide whether you want a meter that
    > does all or a seperate flash meter, exposure meter and spot meter, very
    > expensive, a proper spot meter will cost more than your camera, so I went
    > for an all in one meter, the SEKONIC digital L-508, 329uk, its an
    excelent
    > meter, and has a built in 1-4 degree parallax free zoom spot meter.
    >
    > Hope this is of some help
    > Brian..............................
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > "Danny" <danderson31kc.rr.com> wrote in message
    > news:tHqQa.212553$Xl.3595154twister.rdc-kc.rr.com...
    > > I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of
    you
    > > might have on learning black and white photography in general.
    > >
    > > I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more
    > dramatic,
    > > sensual, and mysterious...
    > >
    > > My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a variety
    > of
    > > situations... primarily architecture and people to start...
    > >
    > > I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it..
    I'll
    > > get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo.
    > >
    > > The first thing I've done is to get Creative Camera Control by Peter
    > laytin
    > > and have read that twice. I am going to start taking photos this week
    > and
    > > trying different things... I do not have a light meter as of yet, but
    > > should have one, (and a decent flash), by weeks end.
    > >
    > > I have also found a good photographic reatiler that offers classes, but
    > as
    > > of now there is not a beginners class scheduled...
    > >
    > > I can't seem to find much, (via internet or yellow pages), on groups in
    > the
    > > area.
    > >
    > > Anyone have suggestions?
    > >
    > > Thanks.
    > >
    > > Danny Anderson
    > > Kansas City
    > >
    > >
    >
    >

    Brian Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    "Danny" <danderson31kc.rr.com> wrote in message news:<tHqQa.212553$Xl.3595154twister.rdc-kc.rr.com>...
    > I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of you
    > might have on learning black and white photography in general.
    >
    > I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more dramatic,
    > sensual, and mysterious...
    >
    > My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a variety of
    > situations... primarily architecture and people to start...
    >
    > I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it.. I'll
    > get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo.
    >
    > The first thing I've done is to get Creative Camera Control by Peter laytin
    > and have read that twice. I am going to start taking photos this week and
    > trying different things... I do not have a light meter as of yet, but
    > should have one, (and a decent flash), by weeks end.
    >
    > I have also found a good photographic reatiler that offers classes, but as
    > of now there is not a beginners class scheduled...
    >
    > I can't seem to find much, (via internet or yellow pages), on groups in the
    > area.
    >
    > Anyone have suggestions?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Danny Anderson
    > Kansas City
    First thing I would ask is how "new" are you? With any form of
    photography weather it be B&W or color, you need to learn the basics.
    Shooting black and white can teach you the basics as well, but I would
    start with that before you try all the dramatic stuff that you wish to
    do in B&W.

    Also if you already know that stuff, then I would suggest on the web
    go to [url]www.photo.net[/url]. They have a lot of stuff on black and white.

    Also you might want to go to the book store and get some books on
    Black and white technique, as well as lighting for Black and white.

    In addition to reading, experiment with what you learn. That is how
    you progress. There is a web site called [url]www.photographyreview.com[/url].
    They have a message board there where you can post pictures for
    review. Feel free to post some of your work in there. Also don't be
    afraid to take constructional advise. That is how you learn. The
    people in this forum are very nice and they won't bash you. This is
    the only board I know if that you can post pictures to. If anyone else
    knows of any please let us know. I would be interested in seeing some.
    Frederick Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Randall Ainsworth <ragnospam.techline.com> wrote in
    news:140720030927303893%ragnospam.techline.com:
    >> Randall, I thought you were a professional with many years
    >> experience. How can you not know that the canon elan 7e HAS a spot
    >> meter built in?
    >
    > I am but I never used automated 35mm gear. The meter belongs in your
    > hand, not in the camera.
    All digital equipment is the same, meter built in. Many medium format
    cameras now have meters built in too. Are you saying you haven't picked up
    a new 35mm in the last 10 years?
    Jon Pike Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Hi, I'm new here and I use a Sverdlovsk-4 meter which is cheap and very
    precise. I'm really happy with it.
    []s,
    Marcelo

    Randall Ainsworth wrote:
    >>All digital equipment is the same, meter built in. Many medium format
    >>cameras now have meters built in too. Are you saying you haven't picked up
    >>a new 35mm in the last 10 years?
    >
    >
    > I've picked 'em up and set 'em back down. Too much automated crap.
    > The only 35mm I own is a Pentax Spotmatic. I've always been more of a
    > medium format kinda guy.
    >
    > Now, after going through all of this, I do own a 10D and I think it's
    > wonderful. But the only automatic feature I use is the autofocus.
    > It's still up to my brain to determine if I want to use the exposure
    > values the meter suggests (usually use shutter priority mode).
    >
    > For B&W, I still think one of the best meters for learning and doing
    > it correctly is the non-digital Pentax Spotmeter. Wish I could find
    > one that still worked for a reasonable price.
    Marcelo Guerra Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Never heard of it but if it's accurate that's all that counts. I have
    an ancient Gossen Luna Pro (with the spot attacment).
    Randall Ainsworth Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Randall Ainsworth <ragnospam.techline.com> wrote in
    news:140720031339202558%ragnospam.techline.com:
    >> All digital equipment is the same, meter built in. Many medium format
    >> cameras now have meters built in too. Are you saying you haven't
    >> picked up a new 35mm in the last 10 years?
    >
    > I've picked 'em up and set 'em back down. Too much automated crap.
    > The only 35mm I own is a Pentax Spotmatic. I've always been more of a
    > medium format kinda guy.
    >
    > Now, after going through all of this, I do own a 10D and I think
    > it's
    > wonderful. But the only automatic feature I use is the autofocus.
    > It's still up to my brain to determine if I want to use the exposure
    > values the meter suggests (usually use shutter priority mode).
    You have time to check the AE, and then switch to manual, and still get the
    shot?
    > For B&W, I still think one of the best meters for learning and doing
    > it correctly is the non-digital Pentax Spotmeter. Wish I could find
    > one that still worked for a reasonable price.
    I'll have to agree there. The asahi (pentax) V that I have access to is a
    dream.
    Jon Pike Guest

  10. #10

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    > You have time to check the AE, and then switch to manual, and still get the
    > shot?
    I shoot mostly in shutter priority mode. After 30+ of doing
    photography I have an intuitive sense of knowing if the meter is
    telling me the right thing or not. So, I make a judgement call whether
    to take the camera's assessment or change it. It's pretty good at
    being right.
    Randall Ainsworth Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography


    "Jon Pike" <Anonomoosehotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:Xns93B855A5DA147LessThanPerfectInc24.71.223. 159...
    > "Danny" <danderson31kc.rr.com> wrote in
    > news:tHqQa.212553$Xl.3595154twister.rdc-kc.rr.com:
    >
    >(snip)
    > Your canon will have all the light meter you'll ever need.
    > If you want to really understand B&W photography, read The Negative and
    The
    > Print by A.Adams.
    > Those books explain the basics, and if you understand the basics, you can
    > do anything.
    >
    I'll do that. Thanks.
    Danny


    Danny Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography


    "Brian" <brian5blueyonder.co.uk> wrote in message
    news:ihzQa.7379$qf3.4303news-binary.blueyonder.co.uk...
    > B&W is an excellent medium to start off with, its so easy to develop and
    > print your own work, and a lot of fun. there are plenty of books
    available,
    > but my recomendations would be
    >
    > Basic Photography by Michael Langford . ISBN 0-240-51592-7
    > The Darkroom Handbook by MIchael Langford . ISBN 0-85233-188-1
    >
    > and for a little heavier reading, the Ansel Adams set of books.
    >
    > The Camera ISBN 0-8212-2184-1
    > The Negative ISBN 0-8212-2186-8
    > The Print ISBN 0-8212-2187-6
    >
    > These books will help you decide what you want to do and how you want to
    go
    > about it.
    >
    > Try your local adult education college, there should be one that has a
    > photography course, the benefits of this are that they usually have their
    > own darkrooms and chemicals.
    >
    > The Elan 7 Already has and good light meter built in ,with Evaluative
    > metering, Center weighted metering and a 10% partial meter linked to the
    > focus points and a 10% spot meter included, and flsah metering , why
    would
    > you need to spend more money on a meter you dont need at the moment, once
    > you have grasped the basics , you can then decide whether or not you need
    a
    > seperate meter, but hold onto your money for the time being, or buy a nice
    > started darkroom kit, it will pay for itself in no time.But if you have
    your
    > heart set on a meter, the you have to decide whether you want a meter that
    > does all or a seperate flash meter, exposure meter and spot meter, very
    > expensive, a proper spot meter will cost more than your camera, so I went
    > for an all in one meter, the SEKONIC digital L-508, 329uk, its an
    excelent
    > meter, and has a built in 1-4 degree parallax free zoom spot meter.
    >
    > Hope this is of some help
    > Brian..............................

    It is.. thank you.

    Danny


    Danny Guest

  13. #13

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    I could never understand Ansel's book even after reading it several
    times. What it took was someone who knew the Zone System to guide me
    through it. Once that was done, it was easy and improved my B&W work
    tremendously. It was like rediscovering photography.
    Randall Ainsworth Guest

  14. #14

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Randall Ainsworth <ragnospam.techline.com> wrote in
    news:140720031624323012%ragnospam.techline.com:
    >> You have time to check the AE, and then switch to manual, and still
    >> get the shot?
    >
    > I shoot mostly in shutter priority mode. After 30+ of doing
    > photography I have an intuitive sense of knowing if the meter is
    > telling me the right thing or not. So, I make a judgement call
    > whether to take the camera's assessment or change it. It's pretty
    > good at being right.
    >
    Then you're not doing it all manually :P
    Jon Pike Guest

  15. #15

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Randall Ainsworth <ragnospam.techline.com> wrote in
    news:140720031755001439%ragnospam.techline.com:
    > I could never understand Ansel's book even after reading it several
    > times. What it took was someone who knew the Zone System to guide me
    > through it. Once that was done, it was easy and improved my B&W work
    > tremendously. It was like rediscovering photography.
    Which book? He's written dozens :P
    Jon Pike Guest

  16. #16

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography


    "Jon Pike" <Anonomoosehotmail.com> wrote in message
    >
    > Randall, I thought you were a professional with many years experience. How
    > can you not know that the canon elan 7e HAS a spot meter built in?
    Actually it doesn't. Not a true spot meter anyway.


    Steve Guest

  17. #17

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    I think he means the set of three books which should be used together and
    treated as one, basically they are the photographers bible. These books have
    been about since Adams was asked to write an article for a photography mag
    back in the 1930's, but the three listed below are the latest revision, with
    the help of Robert Baker, which cross reference each other and cover most
    aspects of photography
    This three book set by Ansel Adams is :-

    1) The Camera ISBN 0-8212-2184-1
    2) The Negative ISBN 0-8212-2186-8
    3) The Print ISBN 0-8212-2187-8

    Brian......................................

    "Jon Pike" <Anonomoosehotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:Xns93B8C9D13FFAALessThanPerfectInc24.71.223. 159...
    > Randall Ainsworth <ragnospam.techline.com> wrote in
    > news:140720031755001439%ragnospam.techline.com:
    >
    > > I could never understand Ansel's book even after reading it several
    > > times. What it took was someone who knew the Zone System to guide me
    > > through it. Once that was done, it was easy and improved my B&W work
    > > tremendously. It was like rediscovering photography.
    >
    > Which book? He's written dozens :P

    Brian Guest

  18. #18

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    "Steve" <sct817nospamcomcast.net> wrote in
    news:4cMQa.64491$ye4.46299sccrnsc01:
    >
    > "Jon Pike" <Anonomoosehotmail.com> wrote in message
    >>
    >> Randall, I thought you were a professional with many years
    >> experience. How can you not know that the canon elan 7e HAS a spot
    >> meter built in?
    >
    > Actually it doesn't. Not a true spot meter anyway.
    >
    >
    >
    What makes it not a 'true' spot meter?
    Jon Pike Guest

  19. #19

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    Take lots of pictures.

    Also study the way light is used in the black and white photos in books and
    magazines. Printing is an important part of black and white, so perfect
    your darkroom technique. But mostly take lots of pictures. Try for two or
    three rolls a week minimum. Evaluate your work and plan your improvements.

    "Danny" <danderson31kc.rr.com> wrote in message
    news:tHqQa.212553$Xl.3595154twister.rdc-kc.rr.com...
    > I'm new to photography and was wondering what reccomendations some of you
    > might have on learning black and white photography in general.
    >
    > I want to start with B&W because, (for me at any rate), it is more
    dramatic,
    > sensual, and mysterious...
    >
    > My first goal is to learn to be able to photograph decently in a variety
    of
    > situations... primarily architecture and people to start...
    >
    > I have just bought a canon elan 7e and gotten a red filter for it.. I'll
    > get others as I learn about them and their impact on the photo.
    >
    > The first thing I've done is to get Creative Camera Control by Peter
    laytin
    > and have read that twice. I am going to start taking photos this week
    and
    > trying different things... I do not have a light meter as of yet, but
    > should have one, (and a decent flash), by weeks end.
    >
    > I have also found a good photographic reatiler that offers classes, but
    as
    > of now there is not a beginners class scheduled...
    >
    > I can't seem to find much, (via internet or yellow pages), on groups in
    the
    > area.
    >
    > Anyone have suggestions?
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Danny Anderson
    > Kansas City
    >
    >
    >

    Norman Worth Guest

  20. #20

    Default Re: Newbie question about learning B&W photography

    >I'm old and slow and methodical.

    I thought I was the only one. :-)
    Randall Ainsworth Guest

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