I got my first dSLR about 3 years ago, and although I had been interested in/surrounded by and dabbled in photography throughout my life, it turns out that I didn’t know squat. Instead of putting the camera on the little green box setting, I took it as an opportunity to learn everything I could about photography and my camera. I dove head first into photography, and found that I actually have a passion for photography, and cannot see myself without a camera. EVER. Since that fateful day, I have upgraded my camera, and am constantly working on developing my eye.
That being said, I have had those just getting into photography approach me with questions, and I have found some common themes. I have put together this list to help new photographers that may be a bit overwhelmed, and having been there not that long ago, I hope drawing from my experience will help the newbies.
8 Tips for Photography Beginners
- Read the manual. I know, you would rather watch paint dry. At least skim it. You need to know how to change the aperture and shutter speed (Whatever those are). A lot of questions that you have are answered in that little book that came with the camera. You have the key.
- Learn the basics. Check your local camera store for basic camera classes (some are free), as well as local community colleges for a more drawn out course. However, if you don’t have the time or cash to do that, there are a ton of free resources on the Internet.
- Just shoot. Practice, practice, practice! Get the dial off of that little green box and learn about how each setting affects the photo you take. Know what what an aperture is and how to change it on your camera model, as for shutter speed and ISO.
- Go shooting with other people. No matter the skill level, you can learn from someone else. You may find than you know more than you think you did by teaching someone else, and will learn something new by observing others.
- Get more than one memory card and battery. You need multiple cards. They are so reasonably priced, you can’t afford not to. batteries for your camera can be a bit pricier, but it is worth it to have an extra one when you really need it.
- Look at LOTS of other photos. There are so many options with the Internet, look at photos and decide why you like them. What makes them work for you? Is it the colors? The depth of field? The composition? Look at the famous photographers, and learn from their techniques.
- The Internet has a plethora of information. No matter what your views are on social media like Twitter and Facebook, there are many reputable photographers involved who have a wealth of knowledge they love to share.
- Use a photo editing software. Most dSLR’s come with some sort of photo editing/managing software. Personally, I wish that I had used Adobe Lightroom from the moment I downloaded my first photo, but hindsight is 20/20. There are also free photo editing software companies available that you can check into. However, DO NOT rely on the photo editing software to fix your mistakes, you must learn how to make a photograph in the camera. The importance of the software is in the metadata, or information about your photo. The digital age is a great time to learn photography, because you can shoot your images, download them 2 minutes later, and see where you went wrong. It is better to do this on the monitor than your little LCD so you can actually see your image.
I hope these tips are useful, and please feel free to add to this list on your own as you go along in your own photographic journey.
Thanks for stopping by!