What makes the professionals always come up with the impressive shots every single time? The striking colors, strong structure, unique and creative composition, narration, simplicity, expression or their attitude and confidence. Well it is the matter of perfectly balancing all the things. The professionals know well in advance what they want and how they can achieve the desired effects. The impressive photographs for them is just the matter of releasing the shutter all the way down. They can anticipate the results even before releasing the shutter and don’t have to pray for the flawless shots. Want to know how professionals do it? Here are 10 photography tips followed by the professionals which will help you in moving beyond the most common “click and pray” approach.
Master Your Camera Settings
Mastering your camera’s settings is the key to getting the perfect shots every time. The way you handle the camera not only speaks volumes about you as a professional photographer. It also reflects on the quality of the images. Understanding the camera mechanics, familiarizing yourself with the camera modes, knowing which mode to use for capturing the action or photographing the sun-stars, tuning the camera’s settings for taking mesmerizing sunset shots — all help you in getting the desired effect every single time.
Think Before You Shoot
Tuning the camera on the auto mode and photographing the subject left, right and center does no good than just costing you time, effort and filling up your camera’s memory card. The age old adage “think before you act”, holds true for photography as well. It opens up ways to reserve some impressive shots in your name. Shoot less, but shoot meaningful. This will ensure that you actually get the shots you want rather than the surprise shots you regret at the time of managing and organizing the photos.
Get The Composition And Perspective Right
Time and again you will notice this statement making space for itself. Composition is the heart of the art. The composition is the founding pillar of images which either makes or breaks the photograph. It renders a strong structure to the photograph which captivates the viewers attention from far off distance. And your perspective adds a creative edge to it, resulting in the photographs that make a long-lasting impression.
Hold The Camera Steady
This might sound childish, but learning to hold the camera steady with your fingers reaching the camera controls as and when required keeps you away from the click and hope / pray approach. And if you cannot hold your camera correctly, your images will always come out blurry due to camera shake. While using a tripod is the best option for keeping your camera stable, not everyone like to carry it everywhere. A good idea is to get the right grip of your camera and shoot the pics like the pro.
Be Ready For The Right Moment
Being at the right place at right time is all that you need for the striking photographs. Capturing the dancing peacock or the dew drops on the surface of the leaf or the sky filled with vibrant shades of red and orange are the reprises of capturing the shot at the right moment. These lovely surprises of nature can never be replicated unless you are present there to witness the reality.
Shoot In Continuous Mode
Turn on the continuous shooting mode to make sure that you never miss the spontaneity. Especially when photographing the kids, pets, wildlife, sunsets, fireworks, action and motion, etc — the dynamic subject matter continuous shooting mode acts as the savior. And at the end of the day when you sit back to review the photographs you might come across the surprise shots which will make your day!
Be Ready For The Unexpected
Coincidences and serendipity jazz up your photographic experience. This is one reason why you will always regret not having the camera handy. You never know when the luck turns by your side and gives you a chance to capture the shot with ‘wow’ factor.
Pay Attention To The Light
Lighting is one of the most important aspects of the art and a good understanding of light and it’s nature is essential for getting the pictures that you want. For instance, hard light opens up the opportunities for capturing the fine details of the subject and backlighting enables you to exaggerate the shape and form. Being well verse with the properties and features of light, gives you an opportunity to effectively take advantage of light to create special effects as discussed in this article on lighting effects.
Always Shoot RAW
While you can control almost everything in-camera, the process becomes complicated and debars your creative juices from flowing. And you end up worrying about color saturation, white-balance, optimal exposure and so on. Just remember that the art of photography entirely depends on the way you compose the scene. Opt to shoot in RAW, concentrate on the compositional structure and postpone the hassles of fine-tuning the image for post-processing phase.
Always Process The Images
This might seem to go against the purist approach, but making crucial post processing adjustments come a long way in improving the quality and expression of the photographs. The digital darkroom greatly enhances the finish of the photographs with respect to sharpness, contrast, white balance and saturation, thus, rendering the professional “look” to the photographs. These subtle adjustments make the images lively and expressive.
Great article – really honoured to have a photo featured, right next to my favourite point. Being ready for the moment is an great obsession to adopt. The shot you used was at the end of a long day’s stressful hiking in winter condition. We waited in the cold and growing darkness for the colour to come. It’d have certainly been easier to quit and call it a day; especially with non-photographers in the group. If you can hold your nerve and wait; good light always comes!
We love it when a photographer substantiates our claims with real life example. And there’s absolutely nothing that can beat the experience and the fortune of being there at that moment. Wonderful!!!