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Photography/landscape photography


OK, Kent hope you can help out. I am an Illustrator/Painter.
How can I photograph a landscape scene,(for reference in the studio) example,from a hill with farm buildings, cows, church steeples etc in view and capture the scene the way I actually see it with my own eyes. I am always disappointed when I see the actual photo (digital). Everything seems so small and there is no feeling of the depth of field.
I know that the 50mm lens is supposed to "see" like the human eye but I don't think the answer is as easy as that!
Right now I have a point and shoot Cannon 10X Zoom which is fine for casual photography. I'm sure this camera is not going to help me out. If I were to purchase a Digital SLR Camera what len(s) would I need to purchase?
I would appreciate any insite you could pass on.


You are running into several problems here.  First, you are translating a 3D image into a 2D image.  All kinds of distortions etc. occur with that.  Second, the human eye can see a wider range between dark and light than any camera sensor can.  There are some tricks to overcome this.  The most common is to put  something close to where you stand, in a corner.  Most often this is a boulder, a fence--something.  You then put your subject in the middle somewhere, and have a backdrop.  This gives the illusion of 3D.  Second, you generally want to stop your lens down to something like f11.  Buying a different camera probably won't help you with this.  A camera such as a Nikon D3300 will give you a lot more detail though.  For what you're wanting I woulnd't spend more than that.  For landscapes, pretty much a camera is a camera.  The lens that comes with the Nikon D3300 is usually the Nikon 18-55mm and it's actually pretty good.  You can save money by buying a used D3200 and it's highly unlikely you'll see any difference between it and the more expensive camera.

There is another issue with landscapes in person vs. in a photo.  When you are actually there, your brain is using all your senses, not just vision.  You smell the smells, hear the sounds, feel the breeze on your face, etc.  A photo just can't capture that.  From my POV, a successful photo is one that captures the FEEL of what it was like to be there, not an actual exact visual duplicate.  Photography, like painting, is all about the use of Light.  The Light creates the mood, the feel.  A camera (machine) does not give that.  That's why it is art.

Good luck!
Kent in SD


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Kent Staubus


I am an experienced outdoor photographer My knowledge base includes digital Nikons, use of flash, vintage & historical cameras, and shooting both medium format and large format film. My specialty is night photography, both with or without flash set ups. I am primarily an outdoor photographer and shoot railroads, country churches, abandoned buildings, and candid people photos. I shoot a lot of travel photos in places like Canada, Scotland, Hawaii, Iceland, and of course the Northern Plains.


Have been taking photos daily for the past 15 years, with total experience of 26 years. I have had a number of photos in magazines, including a few cover shots. I am proficient with camera gear made from the 1850s to present.

TRAINS magazine, Railroads Illustrated Magazine

Bachelor Degree from University of Kansas

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