After our first annual Joyfully You survey, we got a request from one of our readers to do a photography tips post. I (Hadassah) am a photographer and have been for over a year now… at least with a Canon camera, not just a point-and-shoot 😉
I use a Canon Rebel Eos T2i camera and usually a 50mm lens, and I am an intermediate, though some may call me a professional amateur, haha 😉
(all photos below may not be used with permission of Hadassah S. Photography)
COMPOSE YOUR SUBJECT (COMPOSITION)
Composition (which literally means “putting together”) is one of the easiest ways to make a photo interesting, as it draws your viewer to a certain area. It’s art, actually. The rule of thirds is a simple rule that puts your subject at the far left or right, to make the subject easier to view and a way of composing it. It’s a very fun way to give your photo a story actually. (To learn more about the rule of thirds, click here)
An easy tip to make your photos look better is to make sure they have a good composition, including the background, foreground, etc. But remember to have fun! Photography rules are almost always meant to be broken is what I always say xD
FOCUS ON A CERTAIN AREA
If you’re photographing people, you’ll almost always want the eyes to be in focus, unless you’re photographing a certain area of the body. It tells the story. As you can see in the photo above (my little sister), the subject’s face is definitely in the most focus and brings the viewer’s eye to it. By focusing on her face, the other details fall into place: She’s wearing a colorful jacket, holding a mini pumpkin, and her hair is in a pretty mess. She’s got a look on her face that makes you wonder what she’s thinking about. It’s an autumn story that makes me wish it was autumn outside! (But then again, I always wish it to be October or November, LOL!)
When you focus on a certain point, you’ll need to use a short aperture, or f-stop number, to tell the story completely. To learn about f-stop, you can read that here.
Your legs are your tripod that God gave you (that’s what my dad says, haha), especially if you use a 50mm lens like I am constantly using. To get a good photo, you might need to stand on a chair or get on your belly to complete the story. Sometimes to get that perfect shot, I have to try several different angles. But make sure you’re having fun, or else your photos won’t have any meaning. 😉
GO OUT AT DIFFERENT TIMES A DAY
I have shot early morning, late evening, the high point of the afternoon- – let’s face it; I am a photographer, so I have shot at almost every hour of the day. The light is constantly changing, and it can be so fun to experiment with it. The only thing is you’ll have to remember to change your settings. I use manual mode pretty much every time I take out my camera- but if you’re a beginner, totally use the ‘picture’ or automatic settings on your camera.
The best time I absolutely love to shoot in, is golden hour. Right before the sun sets- it’s so pretty and golden and absolutely magical. Never try to shoot from 11-3 in the day, as the sun is at is highest point, and it is a nightmare with washing things out and squinty eyes. Ugggg… #photographersnightmare
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Guys, I didn’t start off with amazing images. God gave me a gift of eyes for photography, I know that. But I had to practice SO much before I had amazing images, and I still don’t have professional images! The image above came with almost a year’s experience of constantly learning and practicing.
YOU WILL NOT GET BETTER OVERNIGHT. This is my worst fault, I think, of thinking things will magically happen. Go out and experiment and have fun with all the camera settings. Sometimes I get amazing images by accident. Whatever you do, remember no one is pushing you to try harder except yourself. ❤ ❤ ❤
I’ll add a few more images just for fun for you guys. 😉
“If I have any ‘message’ worth giving to a beginner it is that there are no shortcuts in photography.”
– Edward Weston
Did these tips help you?
P.S. You can find me over at Photography Phun, a blog for all things photography I have been blogging at- for almost two years! 🙂