The acquisition of knowledge or
skills through experience, practice, or
study, or by being taught
Hmmm? Which way do I learn best? It's really a combination of all of these. When I have a problem I have to study about it, either in books or on the Internet. Don't you just love the Internet? So much is right there at our fingertips! Then, I need to practice, A LOT! I learn better if someone personally teaches me, but I'm a hands-on person and have to do it myself, not just watch.
Here's the problem. Many of my photos were soft and flat. They're not out of focus, but just plain lifeless! It was fixable in post processing by adding a little bit of contrast. I didn't know that it was a correctable problem until I read a blog post by Lee at Sea Blue Lens. She had the same problem. Knowing that her camera should take better images, she researched, found the answer, and shared it. To be honest, It didn't dawn on me that this could be fixed in-camera. Well, it can and goodbye to adding contrast almost every single time!! (another one of my secrets revealed) Let me just stop here and say a very, very big thank you to Lee. Stop by her post and see how she solved her problem. Since I have a different brand camera than Lee, I had to do my own research. I found a flickr group of Sony camera owners. It has this great discussion board and "flat images" was one of the topics. I found a way to solve the problem, chose an object with contrast, and experimented. In the second photo you can see the brighter tones of the leaves and how the bird seems to stand out more.
There's a button on my function menu that is called "creative style." I switched from "standard" to "vivid." That's how easy it was. OK, so that was too easy, I needed to find something else to learn about.
Hence, my second learning experiment. I've been wanting to learn about spot metering. Sometimes when you're shooting there is more than one light condition. The camera needs a little help deciding which light to choose. I did know about the spot metering button, I've just never played with it.
I chose a cloudy day because I figured it would be easier to work with than a bright sunny area that would definitely blow out. On the property behind us there is an abandoned railroad trestle that provided a dark area and a light area. You can see it made a difference when I spot metered on the background.
In this set of images I also tried the third option "center weighted." This brought out more color in the background, but I thought it made the posts a little too dark. Now, comes the next step in the learning process...practice, practice, practice. I have to practice enough that the knowledge will stick in my old brain!!
So there you have the way I learn.
help from others
Thanks, Kat, for another wonderful assignment that has helped me take another step forward in this journey of photography!!