Today, I bring you my top 10 photography tips! This is something that many of my readers have requested, so I finally decided to do it. 😀 These tips are just my personal opinions and are definitely not facts. I hope you enjoy reading them!
Buy a dSLR.
This is honestly the simplest and easiest way to transform your photography from low-quality photos to professional, high-quality pictures. To be clear, “dSLR” stands for “digital single-lens reflex camera.” It can also be called a digital SLR or DSLR. These cameras can be extremely expensive, but some of the beginner-level ones are actually quite affordable. My camera, the Nikon D3000, cost me $200 dollars on eBay. I know that isn’t exactly cheap to most of you, but if you put some time and effort into saving/working for the money, then I guarantee you that you won’t regret it! It took me a while to save up enough money for my camera, but it was totally worth it.
It’s okay to edit your photos.
Some people think that if you edit your photos, then you’re not a “real” photographer or your photos aren’t genuine. I completely disagree with this. Every professional photographer edits their photos. To me, editing is just as an important part of photography as taking the actual photo is. Learning to use a good photo editor and taking the time to edit your photos will make you a better photographer and will really take your pictures to the next level. I use GIMP, a free open-source software, to edit my pictures. However, there are plenty of simple online photo editors that are free to use.
Take your camera with you.
Don’t be afraid to take your camera with you on a road trip, a flight, or even to the grocery store! It may be a little extra work to carry a camera around with you, but it’s totally worth it for the photo opportunities that you won’t miss. About 80% of the pictures I take aren’t at my own house – they’re taken when I’m traveling. I bought this on Amazon for just $8, and I use it almost every time I travel – it’s a thick, stretchy, and soft camera case that wraps tightly around my camera and closes with Velcro. I can put my camera in it and stick it in my backpack without having to worry about it getting banged up or broken. I highly recommend it! Travelling with your camera will result in unique photo opportunities that you’ll be glad you didn’t miss.
Quality over quantity.
Would you rather read a blog post with 15 super-amazing pictures, or one with 50 not-so-good photos? I think we can all agree on the first answer. 😉 It’s better to take 3 amazing pictures than 20 bad ones. When I first got my camera, I would take 9 or 10 pictures of each subject I found, and then post every single one of the photos. This resulted in unnecessarily long and boring posts. As time has passed, I’ve learned that it’s not really needed to post 10 pictures of the same thing from slightly different angles. Now, I try to get one or two good pictures of my subject and then move on. This doesn’t mean that you can’t take multiple pictures of the same subject – of course you can! Just try to use varying angles, lighting, and points of view to make the pictures different from one another.
Learn your camera’s settings.
This is an extremely important tip and it’s something that has definitely helped me to make my photos so much better! Taking the time to learn all of your camera’s settings and how to use them will help you to get your pictures looking exactly how you want them to look. Take your camera out of Auto mode, experiment, read the manual, do some research – do anything that pushes you out of your comfort zone and helps you to learn more about your camera. When I first got my dSLR, I thought that I would never be able to understand all of the settings and buttons. Now, adjusting my camera’s settings is something that I do almost automatically. It was definitely worth it to take the time to learn to use my camera!
Don’t give up.
Your photos aren’t going to be perfect right away. It takes time to learn how to use your camera, edit your pictures, etc. I know these are all definitely things that I’m still learning! If a picture doesn’t turn out right the first time, don’t give up. Try again until you get it right. Adjust your settings, move to a different spot, or come back on a different day. The more you use your camera, the better your pictures will become. Your photos may not look like the pictures that you see on Pinterest just yet – but that doesn’t mean they won’t! Keep practicing!
Get feedback from others.
This is another thing that has really helped me to take my photos to the next level. Whether you ask your parents, a sibling, a friend, or your blog readers – getting feedback on your photos will help you to understand what you’re doing wrong and what you’re doing right, and to see your photos through some else’s eyes. I often ask questions at the end of my posts like, “Which photo was your favorite, and which was your least favorite?” I do this because I genuinely want to see the opinions and feedback of my readers. Your opinion helps me to improve my photography.
Unless you’re a professional photographer (and if you are, then why on earth are you reading photography tips from a complete amateur?), then it’s important to remember that photography is just a hobby to you. Don’t let it be a source of stress or worry in any way. If you’re getting tired of carrying your camera around or are frustrated with the way your pictures are turning out, then take a break! It’s okay to miss some photography opportunities so that you can enjoy yourself or spend time with your family. Don’t let photography get in the way of having a good time. It’s perfectly fine to put your camera away for a while and just have fun without worrying about capturing every single moment.
When you’re taking pictures, you need to remember not to get too immersed in your subject and forget to check your camera’s settings. There have been many times when I’ve seen an exciting subject and taken several photos of it before realizing that my settings were all wrong. This resulted in wasted time and bad pictures. To avoid this, make sure your settings are right before you start taking photos. Remember to adjust your settings if the light changes, or your photos will be too dark and grainy or too bright and washed out. You can pause between pictures and check to make sure they aren’t out of focus or blurry. If you can’t seem to hold your camera still enough to get a clear shot, then use a tripod or set it on a flat surface such as a table, a chair, or a stack of books. It takes a bit of extra time to adjust your camera’s settings before you shoot, but it’s worth not missing the photo opportunities.
Don’t be afraid to ask.
This is probably one of the most important things I’ve learned since I got my dSLR! If you see something that you would love to take a picture of, but you’re not sure if it’s okay – just ask. I’ve missed many photo opportunities simply because I was too shy to ask if it was okay to take a picture. I finally started asking – and I was pleasantly surprised to find that most people say yes! In fact, a few days ago, my dad went to this really neat barber shop to get his hair cut, and I came with him with the hopes of taking some photos. The people were really nice and said they were okay with me taking some pictures, so I did! It’s so worth it to just ask. That said, if someone says you can take pictures, you don’t want to be rude – don’t get in anyone’s way or invade their personal space. And if they say no, then definitely don’t take a picture. (I know the pictures below look like I was super close to people, but most of these were actually reflections in the mirrors, plus my lens was zoomed in some and most of these were cropped.)
Now that I’ve shared those tips, I’m going to show you guys some of the photos that I took at the barber shop. 😀
This was a very interesting place! It had some pretty crazy decorations and the whole placed looked like something out of a movie.
Wow, I look so tiny in this picture for some reason. XD By the way, what do you guys think of my new profile picture? (Go to my homepage and you’ll see it on my sidebar.)
I hope you guys enjoyed those photos! They’re pretty different from the pictures that I usually post, but I had a lot of fun taking them. I hope you all have a great day, and be on the lookout for my next post soon – it’s pretty exciting!
What did you think of my photos? Which of my photography tips was most helpful? What are some of your top photography tips?