How to Take Great Photos
Basking under the warmth of the sun, indulging in the serene and spectacular surroundings around you – this is how you envision your ideal vacation getaway. Wherever you are, this is also the best time to capture the very essence of the picture-perfect location in your camera. Taking holiday shots worthy of remembering is just easy with these pro tips.
- Do not be a fickle-minded photographer. The best times to shoot pictures should not be limited to the so-called Golden Hours at dusk and dawn. Seize the opportunity whenever you can – whether it is scorching hot or raining cats and dogs. Bad weather and uneven lighting sometimes give you spectacular and unique images of exotic places. Of course, you can use bright highlights and directional shadows to your advantage – which can only occur during specific times of the day – but it should not stop you from taking photos.
- Avoid putting your subject in the centre of the frame. Analyse your composition so that you can get a more balanced image. You can achieve this by placing your subject towards the edge of the frame. It gives more space for movement, making the subject appear more dynamic and vibrant. If your subject is unaware of your intentions, leave more space in the direction their gaze is set upon.
- Two or more subjects make for a more striking photograph. A subject on its own is vivid enough but if you want to create a more interesting storyline, combine objects in the frame. It lends different levels of meaning in your picture – describing the relationship of the person to the background.
- Higher viewpoints are picture-perfect scenarios. It offers a different view of the world. Shooting crowds within cities from a higher ground will generate striking results. It also allows you to eliminate overcast or cluttered skyline. Of course, it requires a little effort – taking several flights of stairs to get to the perfect spot – but it will be worth it. If you want your digital masterpiece to stand out from a sea of mediocre images, an unfamiliar and rarely used viewpoint is the way to make it happen.
- Shoot environmental portraits to evoke unique expressions. Capturing the image of people in their usual environment – whether at home, in the workplace, or amidst nature – gives more depth and meaning to your pictures. If you are a little bit apprehensive in asking their permission, you can just use a long lens to snap some photos. But it is always polite to let them know you want them for your close-up portrait. Be patient when working with them so you can get great results.
- Do not underestimate the power of post-production work. Don’t just upload or print out your pictures as it is – experiment with post-processing techniques that can bring the best out of it. A little increase in contrast, slight cropping, or selective toning can go a long way to produce an image worthy of a blockbuster movie. Of course, you have to invest on time and skill to do this but you won’t mind making some adjustments to your captured images if you can put them in competitions and even win amazing photo prizes.
Then again, you should not stress yourself too much when taking pictures of different subjects. As Ken Rockwell said, "Photography is the power of observation, not the application of technology."
A trigger-happy shutterbug has the same edge as a seasoned snap-shooter even without the most expensive and most advanced SLR camera on hand. Of course, there are techniques you have to master but it is all about noticing what is beautiful, rare, eerie, spectacular, sweet, or charming in the surroundings and then capturing its very essence.
It is so easy to blame bad pictures on a camera. But even if you don’t have something as efficient as Nikon D5100, you can still get great images just by relying on what you think and feel is right at the moment.
Photography is an art. Beauty and prominence of a subject depends on the abstract palate of the beholder. So click away to your heart’s content and free yourself of the rigidity of photography rules.