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Ten Tips To Make You A Better Photographer NOW!

1) Always have a camera with you and be ready to shoot. It may only be the camera on your phone, but use every opportunity to practice your photography.

2) Never take a photo from eye-level. Thats what we all see, every day. To create more dynamic photos get down low, on your knees or belly, or climb up high. Find a different view-point!

3) Never put your main subject (or the horizon) in the middle of your photo. By all means focus with your subject in the middle, but then move the camera so the person or object is across and up or down a bit. Trust me, it works.

4) If its meant to be straight, get it straight! I'm talking about horizons, buildings or lampposts here. There's nothing worse to spoil a lovely landscape than a slightly "wonky" horizon. Get it as straight as possible in camera, and better in post. If you want to put an angle on your photograph, make it a steep one, so viewers know you meant to do it that way!

5) Always shoot landscape and portrait! Make it part of your routine. As soon as you've pressed the shutter, turn the camera the other way and shoot in the opposite orientation. You'll be surprised at what this small difference can make to lots of photographs....

6) Use burst or continuous shooting mode! Especially if you're hand-holding. Every time you go to take a shot, take three or more. That way if you (or your subject) moved, you'll have taken at least two other frames that maybe will be ok. We're shooting digital, so we don't have to worry about the number of shots we take!

7) Imagine your subject is a Black Hole, and you're being sucked towards it in a giant spiral! So start wide, getting the subject with its surroundings, then circle your subject, shooting as you go, getting closer, exploring different angles, until you're right up against it, probably doing macro work!

8 ) Examine The Adverts! When you're walking to school, driving to work, or you're just out and about, have a real good look at the photographs that surround us, but we often ignore. Posters, bill-boards, bus-stops, shop-windows, magazines, etc. Great photographs are everywhere, and by taking a closer look we can be inspired and informed!

9) Find a great background, and wait for your subject! This applies to all sorts of photography, including wild-life, street and sports. Great photos are ruined with distracting backgrounds - so find an interesting or plain background, depending on your intention for the image, then wait for your subject to come into frame. (This one was from Scott Bourne I think!)

10) (Related to 1) Keep your camera out of the bag! Obvious I know, but when you're out and about keep your camera at the ready. Start by firing off a few frames to get you "warmed up" even if there isn't an interesting subject, then don't put your camera away - get used to walking around with your camera at the ready, you never know what might be around the next corner!

11) (Hey, its better than 10!) Subscribe to the SCL Photo Podcast! Only kidding with this one, but why not check it out and join me as we become better photographers!

Cheers, Rob.

Reader Comments (2)

Thanks Rob. Related to 1 and 10. If you carry your DSLR, adjust your settings (ISO?) when the light changes (say you move from outdoors to indoors).
Take a test shot and maybe pre-focus at a certain distance, so you are ready for immediate action.

It is always a good idea to re-set your DSLR to some decent settings when you turn it off, so you don't shoot the first couple of frames at those crazy settings from yesterdays low light shoot.

May 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRobvE

Great points!

May 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRob_Nunn

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