Posts tagged with “Photos”
I’ve been into photography for a while now, and while I definitely don’t consider myself an expert on any level, I’ve come across a lot of tips over the years that have really helped to improve my photos. I’ve collected together a few of my favorite ones below, in the hopes they’ll help someone else.
Next time you go out to take some photos, give yourself a constraint. For example, maybe just bring one lens, or choose just one focal length to shoot at (a prime lens works perfectly for this). When I went to Italy, I brought 2 lenses, one of which appeared to be broken when I got there, so I had to spend the week using only my 50mm lens. This actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise, as I ended up with some of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken. Another great exercise in constraints is to place a piece of paper on the ground, and then take 50 photos without taking your feet off the paper. Really, you’re just trying to get yourself to look at the world in a different way.
Take your camera everywhere
A lot of great photos come about because someone was in the right spot at the right time. However, in order to capture the moment, you have to have a camera to do it with. If you’re not carrying your camera with you everywhere, you’re probably missing out on a lot of opportunities. One of the best things I ever did was purchase a point and shoot camera that fit in my pocket–now I can carry it wherever I go, ready for the unexpected.
Stop worrying about equipment
So many times, I’ve caught myself saying, “I would love to take that photo, but my camera’s not good enough.” This is stupid. Ansel Adams didn’t have a fancy 20 megapixel DSLR, and he took photos better than most people can even dream of. Instead, work with what you have–it’s the thought behind the photo, not the camera, that truly matters. I’ve taken great photos with tiny little point and shoot cameras, and I’ve taken horrible photos with my big DSLR. The sooner you realize your equipment doesn’t matter, the better.
Ask for critique
Some of the best photography experiences I’ve had were when I’ve had my photos critiqued by others, and when I’ve critiqued others. Having someone else take a look at your work can be incredibly helpful, as they’ll often notice things you never saw yourself, and critiquing other people’s photos can help you find new techniques and approaches to photography. If you have a group of friends that are all into photography, maybe you can meet every so often and swap shots. Or, join a site like Flickr, and start commenting on photos by other users. Soon enough, they’ll be commenting back on yours, and you’ll start seeing your photos in a whole new light.
Take lots of photos
Memory cards are cheap, so why skimp on photos? I’ve found that the more photos I take, the better I become at photography. But it’s not just about taking lots of photos, it’s about going back and seeing what your mistakes were and learning from them. If you aren’t taking a whole bunch of photos, you’re not going to learn from your mistakes, because you won’t be making them.
Don’t think about Photoshop
For a while, I was really into Photoshop–nearly every photo I took was manipulated in some way to make it better, and I started to even think about how I was going to process an image before I even pressed the shutter button. This is bad. Focus on making your photos as perfect as possible before they get to your computer, and you’ll end up with a much nicer finished product. That’s not to say you shouldn’t tweak photos afterwards, but you just have to remember that taking an amazing photo isn’t about what filters you use, but rather about how you compose the image in the viewfinder.
Hopefully these tips are helpful, and if you have any to share, make sure to leave comments below!