10 Digital Photography Tips :What You Need to Shoot a Perfect Photo
Thinking about producing better photos using digital camera? No matter you are a complete novice or even seasoned photographer, these tips will help you make a huge difference:
1. The Rule of Thirds
The most basic yet very effective rule in composition, rule of third is the key of visually attractive photos. Mastering this rule will make you a much better photographer.
Rule of Thirds is creating imaginary lines, two horizontal and two vertical, divided the image into nine even squares. Use the lines to creating a good composition. Placing the focal point of the image at the intersecting points of the lines will make it look more aesthetic.
Using rule of thirds composition allows the image look more pleasing as the eyes will ramble the frame.
2. No More Camera Shake
Blurring images because caused by camera shake is the most often mistake any photographer do. To avoid camera shake, the most crucial thing is holding the camera properly. Use your dominant hand to hold the camera body and the other hand around the lens while keeping the camera near enough to keep your body supports it.
Shutter speed setting is also very important. Be sure that the speed is fitting the focal length of the lens. Lower shutter speed will cause blurry image from any unintentional movement while you shooting the pictures.
Take note on this rule of thumb:
1 / Focal Length (in mm) = Minimum Shutter Speed (in seconds)
Monopod or tripod will come handy to keep the camera position stable.
3. Exposure Triangle
Exposure triangle are aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. Mastering all three of them is what every photographer needs to produce best exposure and overall appearance of their photos.
The key is mastering how each one associates with the rest. When you adjust one basic, say aperture, you will also need to consider the shutter speed and/or ISO for the ideal combination.
Auto Mode is a handy feature as you no longer need to bother about any of the three. But using it wont let you produce the most ideal photo like you want it to be.
4. Polarizing Filter
There are different types of lens filter available. In case you can only afford to have one, be sure that it is a polarizer. Circular type is the recommended type of polarizer to allows TTL (through the lens) metering like auto exposure.
Polarizer able to minimize reflections from water and materials like metal and glass. This filter also able to increase color tone of the sky and greenery. In short, it is able to give the WOS factor to the image. Another benefit is the filter also works as protective layer to the lens.
5. Sense of Depths
Sense of Depths on landscape photographing helps to create an illusion like the viewer of the photos feel like they see the landscape directly.
Create this sense of depths by using wide-angle lens for a panoramic view. Set the aperture small at f/16 to maintain clear and sharp foreground and background. It is highly recommended that the object or person positioned on the foreground. This will create sense of style and highlights the distance between objects. This setting requires slower shutter speed thus using tripod is highly advised.
6. Simple Background
In digital photography, less is more! Be careful when decide things you want in the shot and focus more on the focal point. Too much things can be distraction.
The best background is the simple one, the one with plain neutral colors or simple patterns. This will prevent distraction from anything on the background allowing the focal point to shine. Simple background works best when the focal point or model is positioned right on the center.
7. No Indoor Flash
Using flash when taking photo indoor can make it look unnatural and harsh. Taking indoor photos without flash can be still clear and sharp. These are the steps to do:
Set the ISO up at 800 to 1600 to allows faster shutter speed.
Set the aperture as widest as possible to allow more lights reaching camera sensor. The result will be blurred background (in a good way).
In case using flash is a must, choose a flash with rotating head and point the light to the ceiling with certain angle.
8. The Right ISO
Setting the right ISO is crucial to set the cameras light sensitivity. It also determines the grain of the image.
You need to be flexible on choosing ISO depending on particular situation. On dark situation, higher ISO from 400-3200 would be better while on bright condition, ISO 100 or even Auto Setting is more than enough.
9. Panning the Motion
Panning technique is used to capture moving subject or an object in motion. This technique requires you to set shutter steep two steps lower than the normal setting. For example, when the normal speed is 1/250 you must set it on 1/60. Follow the subject with the camera and maintain your finger on the shutter half way down. This allows you to lock the focus and take shot right away.
10. Try Different Shutter Speeds
Experimenting with different shutter speed will help you master it while at the same time, creating interesting effects.
Shooting at a dark of night, set the shutter at 4 seconds and dont forget to use a tripod for steady camera. The photo will capture trails of light from a moving object. Change the shutter on faster speed such as 1/250th of a second, it creates the effect of freezing the moving object.
Experiment with different moving objects as backgrounds such as beach waves or busy roads with moving people and cars and take pictures with different shutter speeds. It will create effects of blurred movements or snapshots.
Dont be afraid to play with the shutter speed to create some interesting effects.
When taking a night time shot, use a tripod and try shooting with the shutter speed set at 4 seconds. You will see that the movement of the object is captured along with some light trails. If you choose a faster shutter speed of say 1/250th of a second, the trails will not be as long or bright; instead you will freeze the action.
One thing to remember when experiencing with shutter speed: camera shake is a big no. Be sure the camera is well stabilized.
Bonus Tips: Spend More on Training (and Less in Gear)
New camera or lens with improved specs and features are tempting. But you better consider more before spending thousands on those gears. The problem is even with high end gears, many people still not able to produce photos as they expected and it leads them to huge regret.
Actually, a standard digital camera with its bundled zoom lens is more than enough to create amazing photos. It is the way you maximize and optimize the gears you have and for this, theres nothing more important than mastering photography basics. Invest more on training or workshop to help you learn more about composition and light until you can use your existing gear to its full potential. That would be the time to consider getting a new gear.