3 Easy Tips For Taking Better Photos - a guest post by Jason Mullett-Bowlsby, owner of Shibaguyz Photography
As a professional photographer I get asked questions… lots of questions. People ask me about my camera, my lens, and my equipment. Conversations sound something like this:
“So, I’ve been thinking of upgrading to a new body. What one do you like?”
“Do you like prime lenses?”
“Is that a ‘nifty-fifty’ you have on there?”
“I once read that Cannon’s are better than Nikon for shooting Mountain Sasquatch in their natural habitat…”
While all of these questions have merit, the answers will not necessarily make anyone a great photographer. Buying an expensive camera with big fancy lenses will not allow you to take professional quality photos any more than buying a professional-grade Viking gas range and new All-Clad Stainless Steel pans will let you cook like a five-star chef. It just doesn't work that way.
However, there are tricks to make your photos (regardless of what camera you use) look more professional.
Click the "Read More" link for the full article.
Maybe you’re a clothing designer taking photos to sell goods on your website (or a craft site like Etsy). Perhaps you are a hobbyist who’s shooting for posterity, documenting the lives of your children. Possibly you just take selfies on your camera phone. It doesn’t matter what you are photographing or why; the fact remains you are doing it and there are ways to make your photos instantly better whether you are using a $3000 Nikon D3 or a $30 Nikon Cool Pics camera.
Relax, I’m not going to give you a big long lecture about reading your user’s manual (we all know that’s not gonna happen). Nor will I tell you to buy fancy lights or equipment. Nope, I’m giving you three things you can do today to make your photos look better. Just three things. Ready? Here we go!
Now that you know when and where to photograph, place your subject in the light then move yourself around it looking for the best angles that give you gentle shadows. You may need to turn your subject to get the light to hit the way you want it. Take your time and really look at it.
Pro Tip: Don’t use your camera flash. Nothing will make your photos look more amateurish than flashes used incorrectly. Flashes are great tools to utilize once you know how to take photos in good soft natural light. Practice taking photos without flashes, then work up to lighting with flashes.
2. IDENTIFY YOUR SUBJECT AND FOCUS ON IT
REMEMBER: Keep your subject the main focus.
3. MIND WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE BACKGROUND - Simple is best!
It's easy to get focused on what is in front of you in the viewfinder and forget what’s behind your subject. Before you take your first photo, look at the whole surrounding. Look for clutter, distractions, and embarrassing items. I once had a model looking for a job send me a photo he took of himself. It was a nice selfie. He was shirtless showing off his muscles, looking masculine and macho, with a great big HELLO KITTY poster on the door behind him. It was a FAB photo of him… but totally distracting. We've been sent product shots from students with dirty dishes, dirty laundry, and even the cat in the background. It happens to all of us from time to time but that one distraction pulling away your client's attention can mean the difference between making a sale or a customer going to another site.
Remember: It only takes a moment to set your stage for the perfect shot.
My recommendation is to keep your backgrounds as simple as possible. Bare walls, windows, flat table surfaces or something similar will keep your photos looking clean, composed, and thought out.
That’s it. 3 easy tips you can use today to take better photos. Remember, keep taking photos. Lots of them. Like everything else in life, the more you practice, the faster you master the skill.
Want to see more of Jason's work? Check out his website at ShibaguyzPhotography.com.
Want more training with Jason? You got it! He has two webinars available online from F&W Media and the Interweave Store. Together these two webinars are a FAB starter pack for anyone wanting to take better photos of their projects… or just better photos in general! Here are the links:
How to Create a DIY Photo Studio: Get Professional Results at Home!
Photographing Your Projects Like a Pro
All the details about the classes are at the links.
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