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7 Quick Tips To Take Better Photos

August 3, 2016

People often ask me for photography help or tips, so here you have it - my 7 quick and simple tips to take better photos:   

 


1.)  POSITION YOUR SUBJECT OFF CENTER

 

Heard of the "rule of thirds"?  Imagine a tic tac toe box is super imposed over an image splitting the frame into three vertical sections and three horizontal sections.  

 

When subjects or important parts of an image are placed at the intersections of the lines, this create pleasing compositions.

 

 

Instill that in your brain and in no time you'll be creating beautiful compositions.

 

Now break that rule.  Place a subject all the way to the edge of the frame or right in the center.  Observe the different 'feeling' of the image in that way.

 

 

 

 

2.)  CHANGE PERSPECTIVE

 

Get low, get high, look up, look down, it's amazing how interesting the world looks from a different perspective.  

 

 

 

3.)  GET CLOSER

 

Fill the damn frame - Don't have your subject(s) all tiny and lots of empty space around them. What's the point if you can't see someone's face and there's acres of non-interesting space around them.

 

YOU BLEW IT!!!! 

 

Get closer, zoom in, take a photo in which you can see people's faces.  

 

MUCH BETTER

(Look how glad these people are that you got closer)

 

Take it further and create macros (super close ups).  Macro photos look amazing and they're easy to take - just get closer!  Test yourself out on some subjects that don't move to start (food, plants, some piece of trash in the gutter).  

 

Once you master that, then try the difficult task of photographing macro's of moving subjects.

 

 

 

 

 

4.)  DEPTH OF FIELD

 

Want those gorgeous magazine type images, the ones where the subject is crisp in focus and everything else is very blurry behind them?  If you have a dslr, it's easy, put it on "A" for Aperature and choose a low setting: f1.4 - f4.0.  (Kit lenses may not stop down that low) 

 

Don't have a dslr or lens that can shoot at low apertures?  Position your subject in front of a wide open space (on a high point with open landscape behind them, on a street with street stretching away from them, on top of a building with sky or skyline behind them, etc).  

 

In this way, you are physically creating the same effect of separating your subject from the background; you're just doing it physically by creating space.

 

 

 

5.)  PATTERNS AND LINES

 

In all art mediums, patterns and lines are pleasing....find where they exist in man-made creations or in nature and capture them.

 

 

 

 

6.)  SHOOT CANDIDS, NOT POSED

 

To merely capture a person, take their photo straight on - take a posed snapshot.  

 

But, in order to capture their mood, their character, their soul, indeed their essence....take a candid of them.  Capture them in their element.....laughing, playing piano, chasing a pet around, smiling, or interacting with someone else.  Capture a piece of their personality and it will make for a much better photo.

 

 

 

 

7.)  And the best, easiest, most super prime tip of all..........TAKE MORE PHOTOS!  

 

It's that simple.  You can read up on all sorts of tips and tricks, but until you get out in the world with your camera you're not actually improving. 

 

Make images, examine them, figure out what looks good and what looks bad, and revise. Then do it all over again.

 

You don't need a DSLR, you don't need a heavy "professional" or an artistic looking camera or gear.  Use your iphone - they take amazing images!  Use a point and shoot.  Use whatever is on hand.

 

The more photos you take, the more you'll learn, the more you'll develop your eye for composition.

 

 

 

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