Frozen Moments Photography Blue Book Photography Tips



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Michael A. Le Pard.
Please do not redistribute, edit, or sell these pictures, or use them in any manner without prior written consent from myself.

Thank you and enjoy...

Michael A. Le Pard








Frozen Moments Photography Tips


General Information
Camera Lenses
......Focal Length Chart with Pictures
Camera Brands
Save Thousands of Dollars on Photography


General Information

What is one of the Best ways to learn photography and avoid costly mistakes? By reading the experience of those who have been there before you. Photography is about learning, the more you learn, the more fun it can be. Let's face it, you will never know everything and there will always be something you want to learn about. Here are some of the things I have learned so far that can hopefully be of some help to you. If you have found any of my advice and tips helpful, let me know and I'll see what else I can add to it for future readers life yourself.


Disclaimer: If you find any of this advice useful, you do not have to send $1 to me so I can buy more photography equipment... (though you can if you want to..haha).


Camera Lenses

Might as well start off with one of the most controversial topics in Photography.. Lenses.

This is what wisdom I have learned so far to teach:

• Lenses have come very very far in technical advancement, especially Zoom class lenses. Zoom lenses can be almost as good as prime lenses if you get the "right ones". The "right ones" generally being a manufacturers "top of the line" offerings such as fast apertures (like f2.8 or faster), special glass (APO, SD, ED, etc.) used in the lens or other features not found in their main line such as (Vibration Reduction, Image Stabilizing etc.)
• Forget brand loyalty. While it is very nice to have a lens by your camera manufacturer, there are other manufacturers that will offer you the same or better at a lower cost. Look at your camera manufacturers lenses first to get an idea of what they offer for the price, then immediately turn to 3rd party (Phoenix, Sigma, Tokina, Tamron, Vivitar etc.) brand lenses to see what they have to offer. You will gain the following by doing so:

a. Product comparison knowledge
b. Value and Quality Cost analysis
c. Potential BIG savings
d. More exact knowledge of what you need vs. want.

Things to look for:

#1 Quality of the lens mount, It should be stainless steel, well finished, and of obviously good sturdy quality

#2 Feel the lens as you change focus and zoom the lens, it should be firm without being either tight or loose. There should be no "rubs" as you change the zoom or focus. Look to see that the instrument is well made and engraved, if the part you can see is sloppy, I promise you the parts you can't see or evaluate will be sloppy as well.

#3 Always buy with the right to return, don't fill out the warranty form or destroy the packaging until you have made test photographs at different distances. Take a look at the pictures it produces.. Are you happy with it?

I cannot tell you if your camera manufacturer's lenses are better than another 3rd parties lenses, all I can tell you is EVERY manufacturer makes some duds. By looking into special lens sites that just deal with lens quality such as: Photodo, Photozone, or Photographyreview, you can better compare quality and decide for yourself.

I can tell you is that 3rd party lens manufacturers are making excellent advances in lenses and are producing some very excellent lenses, some even better than your camera manufacturers lenses, and at a lower cost too! Take a look at My Equipment and see what I use.

You will find that there will be photographers who only use Brand X lenses and hate Brand Y lenses, and visa-versa out there. Take all brands into consideration and decide for yourself after you try different brands what you like. Personally, I like certain companies lenses, but I don't dislike the whole lens line from another company.

Focal Length Chart

To better understand what different lens focal lengths look like, take a look at the below chart:


Camera Brands

This is a VERY hot topic to discuss. Photographers are usually VERY loyal to a whole line such as Canon, Nikon, Minolta, Pentax, Olympus, and Contax/Yashica. So to get neutral information about this subject is very difficult indeed due to most photographers sticking to just 1 or 2 brands.

This is what wisdom I have learned so far to teach:

What you want to look for in a brand is:

a. Line of lenses available.
b. Availability of USED lenses.
c. Technological advances in their cameras.
d. Incompatibilities .
e. User reviews of their products.
f. Value for the money.


Positives: Lots of great lenses. They have so many useful of lenses of different varieties such as the 24-85mm. Canon can also boast that is has the fastest glass on average and and still in production like the 50mm f/1.0L USM! So if it is lenses you want, Canon is the way to go. Their lenses are right up there with the quality of Nikon too. They adopt (and throw away) new technology quickly. One of the best names in the business (with Nikon)

Negatives: Good lenses cost a lot of money. Unfortunately, there are quite of few Canon lenses that are costly for fast glass like the 50mm f1.0. Mostly in the High professional "L" series. The is only a disadvantage to those on a budget. Not all lenses are compatible fully with different bodies.



Positives: Lots of great lenses. Nikon is a legend (and still is) on the very best optical quality lenses (though other manufacturers are catching up). You can go back 25 years and still use their AI and AI-S on most of your new Nikon bodies and that is definitely saying something good for buying used lenses.. They are everywhere! Lenses are reasonably priced for what they are. They are probably one of the very slowest to adopt new technology, but that can be good (and bad) since they like to test it out first to make sure it is a benefit to you. Camera bodies have an average turnaround of 5 years before replacement. Excellent construction of camera lenses and bodies. Best name in the business (with Canon)

Negatives: Bodies are a bit high on average for the technology in them. Nikon is Very well known and you do pay for the name of having Official Nikon Equipment.



Positives: Now if there ever is an unappreciated underdog this is it. They adopt technology even FASTER than canon, but as with canon bodies can be quickly obsolete. They have the Fastest shutter speeds, and with the Maxxum 9xi, the BEST built, most dependable bodies. If you need a camera to survive, get a Minolta. Thanks to the under dog status, you get GREAT value for what they offer! Good quality lenses for a good price. Bodies are very reasonable.

Negatives: Under dog status. Since it is not as "popular" as Canon or Nikon used lenses are harder to find and more expensive (but sometimes the opposite can occur).

Yes, this is a broad range, but it has been narrowed down since 20 years ago when there were a lot more camera manufacturers than there are today.

As with lenses, there are 3rd party camera body manufacturers as well, and they can offer you outstanding features for the price, such as the Sigma SA-5, or Phoenix P1 & P2 SLR cameras.

Save Thousands of Dollars on Photography*
(or: Not only getting your stuff for FREE but make money doing it!)

Ok, now it sounds too good to be true! How the heck can you do that? Well, let me tell you the BEST piece of advice you can get for FREE. No strings attached! You don't even have to send $1 to me... (though you can if you want to..haha).
But yes there is a way to not only save thousands of dollars but to get your equipment for FREE and make money doing it too.

This is what wisdom I have learned so far to teach:

People say you never get anything for Free in life, but it is not true. Sometimes the best piece of information costs you nothing. Here is a gold nugget just for you:

Buying and Selling camera stuff:

Yes, that is it. Simple eh? Let me give you a few more tips:

a. Buying most anything in lenses 1/2 the cost of new is a GOOD DEAL.

b. Buy ONLY what you can use. Don't buy a lens (no matter how good the deal is) if you cannot use it on your camera now. Nothing worse than owning a piece of "useless" equipment.

c. Watch the auctions on Yahoo and EBay for patterns in lens costs. They have high/low patterns in cost. It is AMAZING how everyone will want a X lenses this week/month and Y lenses will go really cheap, than it reverses.

d. Do NOT sell on auction sites that charge you for selling there. It just eats into your profit on selling a lens and there are auction sites that will let you sell for free that are just as good like Yahoo. Here is what I do. I generally buy from EBay (only because they have more selection) and sell on Yahoo because it is FREE.

e. Currently by using this personal method, I have gotten ALL of my photography equipment has been not only paid for but I have extra left over to buy more and start the pattern again.

How is that for advice? Is that worth a $1? You betcha!


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