16 April 2012

Olympus E-510

I had a client the other day for my photo tours (a plug) and she had an Olympus E-510 that I could not figure out how to use in "manual mode"  I like my clients to use manual mode when they are learning how to use the camera and take images.  I believe that working in manual really helps the photographer to understand the technical side so that they can become as creative as they want.  They will learn to "rule" the camera, rather than the camera being in charge of what style of images they take. 

I felt sort-of "bad" because I did not know her camera and I was there to teach.  Usually, I can take a digital like canons, nikons and pentax digital cameras and figure them out quickly so we can run around and take images.  It was a very rainy day and the client decided that she wanted to sit down and learn the functions of her camera.

The Olympus brand has some of their own "Olympus lingo" and we did not have a manual so we had to play around with it.  We ended up taking some nice shots and I can't wait until she gets back home to send some to me.  I will put them online, with her permission, of course! 

The Olympus E-510 is actually a nice camera once you figure it out.  It has some options that some of the others do not have; you can take images in "live view" mode, meaning that you can view your image through the LCD rather than the view finder.  This is what makes the camera work a bit differently than most.  The other nice option is when you want to view your image in the LCD, the image rotates according to how you are holding your camera!  It also has four different "play" view modes, single shot, thumbnails multiple shots, a slide show and a calendar.  The camera automatically sorts the images by dates, so in calendar mode you can click the date and view the images taken on that specific day. 

Below are some bullet points of what we discovered, in case it can help any of you:
    * the "sswf" on the top of your camera, blinks when you turn it on.  This means: that the dust cleaner is active.  it means: super sonic wave filter (Olympus terms)
    * P on your dialer means program mode
    * S means shutter mode
    * A means aperture mode
    * M means manual mode
    * To change settings:  click on info you will see that screen that we kept looking at;  here is where you can change your ISO, and other setting:  click okay (in the center dial on the right) and the ISO page will show up, press the arrows to change that setting. 
    * White Balance (WB) click okay after you change the ISO, then the arrow until the WB setting is highlights, then okay;  here you can change it to overcast, auto, sunny, inside etc...scroll to the desired setting and click okay.
    * You can do the same with metering (area, spot etc), HQ and SQ means high quality and standard quality.
    * Flash: you can set the flash manually in the same way that you change your other settings above: 1/4;  1/16 and 1/64
    * Your camera is one of 4 digital that lets you take live view: this is that button we would press to see the image on the screen when taking photos.  (I will try to describe it here: the small button on the right side that has the screen icon, near just below that IS button) when you press on that, it goes to live screen.  The mirror in the camera flips up (that noise that you hear) and the view finder blacks out.  This is when you get all that stuff you don't like onto your LCD screen.   (Now we know)
    * You can use that "display mode" with all the icons, and switch between them by pressing the info button.
    * Here is something important:  In live view mode your camera will not autofocus when you press the shutter button 1/2 way; BUT you can press the AEL button to autofocus.
    * You will hear the mirror (That sound you kept hearing) when taking a picture in live view mode; the mirror will open, focus take the picture and snap up again.
    * IS button means: image stabilization. there are two settings:  one for static subjects(IS2)  and one for subjects moving horizontal. (IS 1)  This stabilizes your camera, while shooting in live mode to reduce the camera shake.
    * When taking a shot in live view, you can magnify the view by clicking on the Okay button. to remove the magnification, click okay again.
    * You have different "play" modes:  standard one photo view, multiple image view and slideshow view.  To change your view:  press menu > scroll to play (the play icon) scroll to click the views. click okay.

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