Pixel perfect: transitioning to a digital SLR

If you have recently made the transition from a point-and-shoot camera to Digital SLR, you might be feeling a little overwhelmed. There are so many settings and different buttons to press that it’s hard for beginners to know what they all do.

Pixel perfect

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As DSLRs have dramatically fallen in price over the last few years, it’s not surprising that there are now more amateur photographers than ever.

Although taking a photograph with a DSLR can be quite involved, the process is an exciting and enlightening experience. While you may not use every gadget and gizmo on the camera, it is a good idea to learn what each one does in case the need should one day arise.

While many people may never reach the level of expertise achieved by professionals such as Bournemouth wedding photographer Nick Rutter (http://www.nickrutterphotography.co.uk/), it is possible to learn to take some very decent photographs with lots of practice – perhaps of the family, the local wildlife or on holiday.

To get started with your new Digital SLR, you will first need to have some basic knowledge and consider some of the following:


As your knowledge and ability increase, consider investing in some new lenses. Popular choices for lenses include Super wide angle/Fisheye (15mm and 10mm); Wide angle (35mm, 28mm, 24mm and 18mm); Standard (50mm); Telephoto (300mm+, 200mm, 135mm, 100mm and 85mm); Zoom (100-400mm, 75-300mm, 70-200mm, 24-70mm, 16-35mm); and Macro (135mm macro, 100mm macro and 50mm macro). Beginners would do well to choose a lens that is suitable for everyday situations. It should be of fairly good quality and have a reasonable zoom. Spend some time learning how each lens works, particularly aperture settings, focal lengths and limitations.

The Rules

While it is good to follow the rules of photography, it doesn’t hurt to bend these a little every now and then. Forget straight lines, not shooting into the sun and the Rule of Thirds for a second and see what you can achieve.


Finally, always be aware of how the light could affect your image. Different lighting techniques can dramatically change the subject and the mood of the photograph. Filters can also be used to help with controlling the light in some situations, and they can offer added protection to the lens front element.