Shooting in Manual

Recently I spent some time with a couple of friends of mine who are professional photographers, I have this obsession of picking peoples brains especially when the subject is something I really love. So during this time spent with these two friends of mine I learned something new and very helpful about my camera. This discovery has enabled me to switch from mainly shooting in aperture priority to shooting in full Manual.

I am so excited now I feel like I had been at a stagnant place in photography for the last few weeks. After the initial influx of primary knowledge I gathered from places like the internet, photography books and magazines and of course my camera manual (which I must spend more time with), I felt like I was not getting any further and in fact without practice I was loosing the knowledge I had initially learned. 

I have had a hard time with understanding the math behind how to adjust your aperture and shutter speed so that they would be appropriate together. I understand each individual function of both but when it comes to putting everything together I felt overwhelmed. With the new little detail given to me by  my friend I am now no longer in the dark and intimidated by switching my dial to M. Yeah!!!

In case you are wondering what he showed me… it is this:
When I look through my view finder at the bottom of the picture there is a line of info. It gives me my Shutter Speed then my Aperture then you see this metering graph III-0-III (something like that anyway) and finally you see ISO.   So as I adjust the shutter speed, ISO or Aperture setting the meter goes up and down. My friend simply told me that as I take my photo to keep an eye on the meter and make sure that it is at zero or as close as possible as it will get me the best image quality possible.  So after learning this very precious tidbit I went out and practiced.
I was so excited to be shooting in manual that I was taking photos of anything and everything that caught my eye, I don't remember feeling this good about anything else that I've learned lately. I think it is because it gives me freedom to play and to set things just as I see fit and not be limited by my camera's preferences at all. This really has also shortened my working time in setting up my camera for each photo I take.

After getting home I picked up my point and shoot camera I  wanted to check if there was anyway to do any type of manual adjustments, there isn't. I remember when I bought that camera and realize that I had no clue what to really look for. At that time I was really just using my camera for capturing memories (which is still why I mainly use a camera) and not at all as a form of artistic exploration. I have decided that I want to look into selling my point and shoot and getting one that has a little more manual adjusting abilities. I have found that I truly take my camera with me at all times and it is heavy when you add all the baby gear and the girly gear I carry in my bag.  So a good point and shoot will be important for me on the go. 

Returning to the main point…   I would like to share the photos I took in a quick 20 minutes after learning this new found knowledge.

I saw this tree against this building and it made me long for spring to truly be here… it seems to be teasing us at the moment. One minute it's clear and one minute it is cold windy and raining. 

 I felt that the edit below really made it look more like fall rather than spring… the flowers on the ground look like the leaves of autumn.

 This one with the very white building behind the tree really makes me think of winter and snow and a cold clear day.

I love the width change effect. It messes with me as I scroll up.

the bokeh created by the sun light streaming through the leaves

the contrast of colors from the tree to the sky

this one was more about the framing of the subject in the photo

this makes me think of Europe

all the different tones and lines and shapes 
 The City-

one of my favorite cafe's in the Pearl District- Lovejoy Bakers, very near 2 of my favorite baby boutiques :)

the semi-circular shape of the building - I really like that

 I hope you had a wonderful weekend and may your week ahead be blessed. 
I will be leaving for my trip soon and so my posts will be sporadic but I want to continue somewhat posting throughout the trip.