I’m no photographer but …

Hardly a sunset you want to miss… πŸ˜‰

The end of a very long day taking photos all over the Island. Around 600 that day, and probably only got 40 good photos. 😯

This is an interesting thing really, as I read or hear of people saying about themselves “I can’t take a good picture”… well, not many of us can if we only do a few, that’s the thing, we have to go out and take 100’s possibly just to get a couple of really good ones.

Even professionals will do that.

A good reason for that you see… and a few simple tips from my humble self … πŸ˜‰

No one gets a great picture on first attempt, so much can go into a great picture, often you don’t even notice a great picture till much later. The simple and best advice would be…

Never delete a photo immediately

I see people do this, unless it is clearly a bad photo, I think you should keep them all at least until you get home and sit down to look at them properly on a bigger screen.

You can often find a boring looking picture as seen on the phone or camera will look great under closer inspection on a bigger screen, I have done that myself 100’s of times. Seriously.

Just go take as many photos of as many different things as you possibly can, I say this for one main reason, You will find something you take great photos of, I know I am rubbish at taking pictures of people, learnt that the hard way though I would like to practice it more with a muse or two. πŸ˜‰

Even if the photos are never shown to anyone, it would be good to learn and practice to improve that one area for me.

Getting to know what you are good at is important, I like taking landscape style photos as you can obviously work out anyway.

I have also started taking an interest in odd things, more abstract style, things that are rusty etc, due to seeing others take great photos, but had I not tried I wouldn’t know. πŸ˜‰

I called that one below… Bonded. ForeverΒ  πŸ˜‰

It takes trying it to see if you can do it to a standard you are happy with.
Not perfect but I was happy with it.

Always take two of the same thing

This is one thing I have made a habit, I can’t tell you how many times I took a photo to get home and find my thumb is in the corner, it happens, I couldn’t see it clearly outside as it is so bright.

So I would be frustrated, now I take two if I can, when I get home delete the worse one. That alone has saved me losing so many good photos.

Another reason I take two is to change the focus depending on what the photo is of, you may have something in the foreground which you should focus on rather than the background, vice versa too, so do both, you may surprise yourself with that one.

It also helps that you can edit pictures so having two means you can play around with the worse photo of the two, and even if you make a mess you can delete it, but if you happen to hit a great idea, try it on the better photo. πŸ˜‰

Create a folder for photos you don’t like much instead of deleting them just save them to that, sometimes you find a good one later on, seeing things on a new day can make a difference.

I saw one I liked 5 years after taking it! Yep… 5 years.

Double up to be sure. πŸ˜‰

Change tactics

This is a simple thing but really effective after a while you start to notice it and it’s just a case of playing around with several things.

If you always just point and shoot, you are never going to get the best out of the equipment you have.

Test settings on your camera and the best way I have found of doing this is quite simple really, take photos of the same thing over and over again in different settings, you then can compare easy and learn fast what setting to use at any given moment. Simple, effective.

Another very effective thing which is simple to try is changing angles.

If you look at the top picture on this very post, I got right down by the pebbles, and tilted my camera back a little so it had more sky in the image, you can see that by the height of the horizon, simple, effective and it often works great. Getting low down can change a picture dramatically.

Test all angles, get closer to things like walls, the floor etc and you will find some interesting effects. It can change a picture in a big way.

Practice and practice more

There really is no short cut to taking good photos as with anything in life, you just have to practice and practice more to get to where you are at a point you know you will get a decent picture most times you go out, which makes going out and doing it more exciting. πŸ˜‰

They say you need 8,000 hours of doing something to be an expert which makes sense because an apprenticeship is about that. πŸ˜‰

Non of us can go out and do 40 hours a week practice really, just not enough time in the week to do that with most people, but even getting 5 or 10 hours a week practice is going to pay big dividends as it all adds up over a year.

So you must practice if you really want to improve anything, photography included but it;s not a bad thing to be practicing, especially as we have a camera on us most of the time and we always encounter opportunities to practice.

Just get out and shoot, play, practice, no one has to see the efforts unless you share them πŸ˜‰

Get opinions

This is a small thing that can grow your own confidence in a big way, as validation can give you a springboard to go out and keep trying more.

You don’t need to ask an expert or critic, just ask a friend or family member what they think of a few photos you have done, you may well hear some great compliments that will inspire you to do more and make you more aware of what you should be taking photos of.

Why it’s important to keep taking pictures of different things as what you think is a boring thing to capture could well be what they say you should do more of. πŸ˜‰

If asking close family or friends is not your thing, find a good online friend who you can send a picture or two and ask for honest opinions. They count but do not take them to heart in a bad way. Just find the positive. πŸ˜‰

Hope them simple tips help any of you, I think we should all at least try photography as most of have a camera on us all the time, admittedly on a phone but they are getting good these days.

Happy shooting… πŸ˜‰

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