Smartphones are good tools to begin your photography journey. But if you want to take this seriously, it is better to start with a film camera. Why? Because a film camera will teach you the techniques that will help you handle digital photography better. The first attitude we want to change is the “snap-and-delete” attitude. In film photography, this is not possible teaching photographers how valuable a shot is. If you wish to use a DSLR, it is okay as long as you apply the same mindset of using a film camera.
Whatever device you are using to shoot, bear in mind these three things. These will help you compose shots that are more professional.
Before you begin your assignment or photoshoot, always determine your intent. The very first shot should already answer the question “Why?” Why are you choosing to shoot in this way? Why are you choosing this lens? The questions go on but all of it points to your intent. It is like having a manifesto that artists pledge to when they do their masterpieces. When you take a photo of a tree, determine first your intent. Is it to entertain a friend? Is it to call people to focus on the environment? You can easily predict that even though the subject is the same, the way it will be photographed will be different. That difference is intent.
Checking the right lighting is important before snapping any photo. This has something to do with exposure and this is dictated by three things: shutter speed, aperture and ISO. All of these can be adjusted or manipulated in your DSLR camera. Next is your environment. Is your surroundings bright, neutral or dark? Indoors require brighter adjustment in your camera. Outdoors require dimmer adjustment in your camera. Wrong adjustment or failure to adjust properly will result to underexposure or overexposure of image.
Lastly, make sure to frame your subject correctly. Photographers follow the rule of thirds. This can be activated in your DSLR or smartphone. Make sure that your subject is at the center of the nine squares unless you have a different intent. Now there are many ways to frame a subject and this may require a change of lens. Wide angle lens are used for sweeping landscapes and group photos. The depth of view is shallow but it is able to have more visual coverage. Telephoto lens are used for close ups and macro photography. This is best for capturing small objects like insects and sporting events. The depth of view is deeper and the details are more crisp and clear.
If you enjoy these tips, please feel free to read other articles in this blog!