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    Hey hey all,
    So my present for Christmas is a 550D with the basic 18 - 55mm kit lens , firstly I wanna master how to use the camera effectively and get to know how to use it correctly.

    A fellow friend (also into photography) suggested I got myself a project to focus on and was just wondering about ideas?

    I've got a lot of time, as I wanna get to know the camera before I embark on a project but just for brainstorming I was wondering.

    Thanks all.
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    Just practice really, keep it in the manual modes. (:
    you could try that stupid photo a day for a year thing people seem to be doing on flickr.
    keep away form photoshop/lightroom at first, usually more often or not it makes the images worse.
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    Buy Digital Photography (magazine usually sold in somewhere like Smiths), it usually has projects and the like in it each month to keep you going. Really good articles in it too.
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    A simple project might be the "colour project." Allow yourself a week and choose a color a day and all the photos your take that particular day should have that color in it as a main or however relevant element of the frame.

    Shoot Jpeg at first, but I recommend you gradually switch to RAW because it allows for more editing latitude and you can more effectively correct many mistakes -although not all :P
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    depending on where you live and who you're around, try taking lots of portraits, or pictures of trees and landscapes I guess. Portraits or macro stuff is good though because you get used to making use of depth of field and controlling it with the aperture.
    Also start saving up for the Canon 50mm F1.8. It's a brilliant lens to use and having such a low aperture makes it excellent for low light and portraits with nice backgrounds. It's also really cheap, you should be able to get one for £70 new on ebay. Using a prime to learn is recommended I think, and being in a similar position to you i'd say it's improved my photographs a lot.
 
 
 
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