Evan Johnson Nature and Art Photography

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12/8/10

Top 7 Photography Tips

Top 7?! I know the standard is top 10 photo tips, but these are really good.

1. Use a tripod whenever possible:
A tripod is your best friend. If you don't have one, then breathe like a sniper and steady yourself on something. Tripods can be expensive or cheap, but just get one that you'll use. Try using the time delay more often too.

2. Take more pictures:
This sounds like a no brainer, but it's really a big one. Get a large memory card, or get more cards. You don't have to pay to develop all the pictures, so learn from mistakes. Order spare batteries or get extra rechargeable ones.


3. Do it differently:
After taking a picture, try it a different way. Change the settings, progressively move through the white balance or exposure compensation. Review the results and learn about your cameras features.  

4. Be aware of the background:
Is there something behind the main subject? Make sure you're not setting yourself up for some strange merger - you don't want the subject of your portrait to have a flag pole coming out of their head. Use macro and portrait settings to blur backgrounds and create stylized photos.

5. Learn about composition:
Get that subject matter out of the middle. What else is around? Can you shift your picture up to include more sky, or is the frozen lake more interesting? Learn the rule of thirds. Some cameras even come with an option to display a grid for you.

6. Change the angle:
Everyone has pictures of iconic structures and highly trafficked tourist areas. Is there a way you could capture the area differently? Try getting on the ground and taking a few photos. Climb up a hill to find a different perspective.

7. Look for light:
Figure out where the light is coming from. If it's casting shadows that you don't want, then try to rearrange the subject. If outside, take note of when the light will be where you want it. Some photographers will only shoot at sunrise and sunset, also known as the golden hour.

"There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs."
- Ansel Adams

Got some tips to add? --Leave a comment