While in general the camera on your phone is perfectly fine for the every day photo, those who choose to go the DSLR route are typically looking for something more. The ability to not just point and shoot, but to have your photo match the vision you see in your head.
How To Hold A Camera
While this may not seem important, holding your camera properly will reduce the amount of camera shake you experience and therefore help to lessen the amount of blurry photos you take.
The most important thing to remember is to hold your arms close to your body. This will allow them to stay stable against your core. Doing so minimizes the amount of camera shake you experience.
For low-light and nighttime photography, a tripod may be more helpful to achieve that sharp image you are looking for.
The Exposure Triangle
The most important aspect of photography is to have good lighting. Remember, if there is poor lighting around your subject, no amount of editing will make your photo look good.
This is where the idea of exposure comes in.
Every time you take a picture, the shutter opens, allowing light into the lens. The light hits the camera sensor, which then creates the image you see. There are three factors that come into play concerning how the light is captured.
- Aperture is the idea of how big the lens opening is. The smaller the f-stop number (f/2, f/5, etc), the wider the aperture, meaning more light is coming in.
- The shutter speed is basically the amount of time the shutter is left open. This is measured in seconds (1/200 sec, 5 sec, etc). A slower shutter speed will allow more light inside. In addition, a faster shutter speed can help to freeze motion while a slower speed will create a blur effect).
- ISO refers to how sensitive the sensor is to light. A higher measurement like 6400 ISO will allow you to take a photo in darker areas, but will result in a grainy image.
In essence, composition refers to where each item in any photograph is placed. In general, good composition follows the rule of thirds. Using two vertical lines and two horizontal lines, divide your shot into thirds in your mind. Interesting elements should be placed at all four of the intersections.
Change Your Perspective
The average person with a camera will shoot an image straight on. As a budding photographer, do not be afraid to get creative and change your viewpoint. You can do this in a number of ways:
- Elevation – take a photo from above or below
- Angle – try shooting from the side of an object
- Distance – get closer or go far away
Do not feel that you need to limit this to one difference. Get into it and try a combination of two or even three changes and see what happens. The introduction of digital photography means you have a limitless amount of attempts to truly perfect your shot, so long as the subject matter stays still!
Also referred to as post-process, some photographers refuse to use these programs in an effort to keep their photos more natural, it is important to keep in mind that your images do not have to be obviously photoshopped.
Think of editing in a similar fashion to wearing makeup. You can layer on the lipstick and eye shadow, express yourself with bold options, or keep it on a more natural level.
Take Pictures Every Chance You Get
Remember, the best way you can boost your photography skills and get better is to continuously practice. Keep your camera with you and shoot everything you can, even at night. Get inspiration from your surroundings. While your first attempts may not be that great, as you progress so will your photography skills.
Practicing is also a great way to get to know your camera and learn how to use all the different features. That way when you want to use your camera for something you really want to remember you won’t have to spend time figuring out the settings.
Once you have the skill, you can take a great photo anywhere, at any time, with any camera. All it takes is practice and remembering what we have discussed above. Good luck and get shooting!