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Anyone Using the Nikon D3100 Camera?

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by JimLewis, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. shovelracer

    shovelracer LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,009

    I went with a Canon T2i this year as my first DSLR. My uncle is an enthusiast and he basically told told me your pictures are only as good as your equipment. His words were more like a $10K camera takes a $10K picture and a $500 camera takes a $500 picture. To an extent there is truth to that. Kit lenses are functional, but once you figure out what focal length works best for you then plan on dropping large on a lens or two. Everything else mentioned is good. Steve was right on and obviously has way more experience than I so not much else I can say. Get out there and take pictures. I try to get out several days a week to just shoot whatever I can. I've taken about 800 pictures so far and have about 20 good ones and 4 keepers worth showing off. Some night shots, but I'm not sure what I did other than use a tripod, remote, low iso, and play with shutter speeds. I'm more into general nature scenes.

    I've been reading the book "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson and it is helpful. If you have not yet get yourself a nice case. I went with 2 Lowepro ones. A large carry all and a smaller hiking case.
  2. Zohan

    Zohan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 136

    So, I was onsite and took probably 100 pics. Here are a few that didn't come out too bad, but i'd like some feedback not only on my first time pics, but the lighting job was one of my first last year...thanks

    Here is a link to the pics

  3. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    Just glanced at them on my phone:

    House pictures look pretty good but the tree lighting photo could use a longer exposure. Your timing with ambient light looked to be pretty close, I'm no expert but I've taken thousands of pictures with my Nikon D80 an D200...both great cameras.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  4. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    I liked #6 and #7 the best. I'd probably use those. The rest I wouldn't use.

    Then again, I'm still totally new at all this night photography too. So my opinion should be considered with a grain of salt.
  5. Zohan

    Zohan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 136

    Thanks guys....yeah once i spent most of the time photographing the house the battery was almost gone and i kinda rushed through the rest. It was very dark in the backyard where those pics were around the pool, which you cant even tell from the pics there was a pool.
    While I dont think the pics are terrible for a first timer, I know I can improve a lot. Was just hoping to get a decent shot for new cards and shirts.....
  6. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,113

    The ones of the house where it is still light enough to see the foreground are the best. The ones around the pool are a little dark. The darker ones would have been good candidates for bracketing shots and layering in post. Pretty good for your first time though. You only get better the more you shoot. Quick question: does your 3100 allow mirror lock up for shooting?
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,552

  8. Zohan

    Zohan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 136

    I have the D5100, not the 3100. I do have live view mode so I assume it does?
  9. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,113

    The tech specs says that the D3100 has mirror lock up, but in parenthesis it says (for sensor cleaning), so not sure you can use it for active photography or not.
  10. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,552

    As I said, the Live View mode locks the mirror up.

    It's just like an old-timey mirror lock mode, except that since light is hitting the sensor, it uses that to operate the display too.

    Oh, and one neat feature of Live View in mine (I have the D300, but most of the Nikon DSLR's work in a similar way), is that in "S" focus mode, you can half-kock [dang, the site won't let me spell this correctly] the trigger to focus. It will snap the mirror back down, and use the phase-detection sensor grid under the penta-whatever (better cameras use a penta-prism, cheaper ones use a penta-mirror, but the concept is the same), for critical focus, then snap the mirror back up when you release.

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