Photography is equal parts science and art, with skills and vision playing crucial roles in the final results. Whether you are content with an amateur’s level of photographic skills or you aspire to be the next Ansel Adams, these tips will take you one step further in understanding the process.
Change the direction of your camera’s flash to avoid the appearance of red eye. When a flash goes off directly in line with someone’s eyes, the result can be red eye. Reducing red eye will improve the quality of your pictures and give your subjects a more realistic appearance.
In order to take good pictures, get closer to what you want to photograph. Many cameras allow you to zoom in on your object, but you will get a better quality photo if you actually get closer instead of relying on the zoom feature. Besides, you need to take a good look at what you are taking a picture of so as to get a better feel for it.
Make sure you know exactly what is going into each photograph. Imagine your camera is a tiny window focused in on just one component of your subject. If you try to put too much into one photograph, you’ll overwhelm yourself and your viewers. A series of photographs taken in succession which lack a focus on a single subject create a story, or a general impression of a scene.
Use manual white balance to spice up your photos. It is possible to let the camera decide the proper white balance for a given environment, but sometimes the camera will get it wrong and the photo will look washed out. Using a manual white balance also allows you to take artsy photos with sepia tones, for instance.
Make sure the background you choose complements the subject of the photo. If you take a photo of a model against a busy background, the viewer’s attention is going to be drawn to the background rather than the clothes. As a general rule, simple backgrounds with colors that contrast with those of the subject are ideal.
Get professional equipment if you are serious about photography. Look for a digital camera with a dSLR feature. This allows you to get a better idea of the frame of your picture. What you preview actually looks like the picture you are taking. With a good sensor, you should be able to take much better pictures.
When photographing portraits, isolate your subject. Use a medium telephoto lens or the medium telephoto setting on your zoom. That, combined with a large aperture (try f/4 or larger), blurs the foreground and background. Focus on the eyes. Use diffused lighting for a flattering look. If outdoors, wait for an overcast sky or shoot with the subject in the shadows and the sun at your back.
Learn about composition rules. Practice and experiment with these rules to create unique pictures. For instance, organizing a picture around diagonal lines gives an impression of depth. You can also play with colors and gradual nuances to give an impression of movement to a picture. Do not follow the rules blindly, but learn when to use them.
A good photography tip is to take a look at post cards when you visit a new country. Looking at their post cards will show you all kinds of great opportunities for shooting. It will save you the hassle of having to search for these places by yourself.
Make your subject feel comfortable, especially if you don’t know them. Many people see photographers as a possible threat. Be sociable and down-to-earth, start a conversation with them, and politely ask if it’s okay for you to photograph them. Help people see photography as an art form, not as a way to invade their privacy.
Pay attention to the symmetry in your pictures. A picture that is supposed to be symmetrical and isn’t will appear much worse than if it were and frustrate your viewers. Make sure you’re standing in the dead center of a symmetrical object if you are trying to create a symmetrical composition.
A great photography tip is to get to know someone before you get a shot of them. This may sound silly but simply talking to a person will give you a lot more insight on how to capture them. It can make the difference between having a genuine or generic photograph.
Move in closer to your subject. When you spot something you’d like to take a picture of, snap a shot. Then move in closer and take a better shot. If you have your subject fill the frame, it will help the viewer appreciate and understand your photo. When taking the picture, continue to move closer until you are sure your picture will represent the subject.
This article has provided you with the basics of photography so it is now up to you to go out there and start implementing these tips into your craft. Take time to learn and practice the tips you have read here, and then take that knowledge and use it to reflect your own personal photographic style.