• Relationship of the figures and the background.
  • Relationship of the figures and the background.

How to start taking good pictures – Photography basics or the ABCs

Photography basics or the ABCs

With the adoption of new technologies that are providing almost everyone with a camera, Photography is perhaps the most extended hobby regardless the age. Since the point of view is different for each of us, there is no good or bad picture, because it depends on what we want to see.

Could be that you want to start taking pictures or just looking to improve your photography these simple recommendations can help you to improve your skills and summarize what you need develop great pictures.

Know your camera

Did you read the camera manual? This is a good place to start; I realize that after studying photography for some years that my camera has more features than the ones I already knew. Other thing that can help you to get use to the camera features is when you find something you are not familiar or barely use start practicing until you feel comfortable doing it; in this way you will be more secure when you apply this knowledge on the next picture. The important or basic things you need to know about your camera are: how to set aperture and shutter speed, ISO and white balance.

Have the camera ready all the time.

Keep your battery charged and the lenses clean, to be always ready put the battery on the charger as soon as finishing with the photo shoot. Also review the lenses and be careful enough to leave them clean. By norm I like to have an ultraviolet filter on the top of each lens to protect the objective and making it easier to clean.

Carry your camera and Shoot every day, sometimes in order to practice there is no need of the camera and can be done by analyzing the elements to find the right angle.

Learn the light

After all photography means writing with light. Depending on the light source it can be hard light when is coming from a source relatively smaller than the subject creates strong, clearly defined shadows. This light is ideal for black and white pictures or for high contrast images.
In contrast soft light, which can come all around from a cloudy day, by using a reflector or diffuser or in the shade in a sunny day; smoothness the shadows or makes them to disappear, reduce the contrast and smoothes the subject
Use the golden hour in your behalf; the golden hour or the magic hour is the time after the sunrise or the sunset which daylight is redder and softer compared to when the Sun is higher in the sky. This type of light produces less contrast, reducing the chances of losing parts of your subject in strong shadows or blown-out highlights. The warm glow adds a pleasing feel to the scene, and the long shadows help to pick out details, adding texture and depth to the image.
This is an ideal light for outdoor shooting since the light will create a cold or warm atmosphere. This type of light is also beneficial for outdoor portraits, shoots of flowers or plants and still objects like cars.
Another good time to take pictures in outdoors is immediately after the rain, I found that the colors get intensified and brighter.

Composition.

This is critical before taking the picture is necessary to pay attention to all the elements in the rectangle; we normally focus the subject in the center and press the shutter. I learn from one admired photographer that the viewfinder has 4 corner and need to look around and arrange if necessary before taking the picture. Here are the most common principles of composition:

Rule of thirds.

This is the most common composition principle, cut your frame into thirds by using a vertical and horizontal lines. Attempt to place the most important parts of the picture along the lines as shown below or even better the point of interest need to be placed over the cross sections of the grid.

Rule of thirds.

Rule of thirds.

Rule of thirds.

Rule of thirds.

Dominant lines.

Use natural lines to accentuate the attention of the viewer.

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Dominant lines.

Diagonal lines

if you can chose diagonal lines will give the sense of motion to your photograph.

Diagonal lines.

Framing.

Use the “boxes” found in your scene as windows or doors. They attract the viewers attention, and each will have different stories (if applicable).

Framing.

Framing.

Relationship of the figures and the background.

Be sure that there is contrast between the subject and the background image adds forcefully.

Relationship of the figures and the background.

Relationship of the figures and the background.

Fill the frame.

Get close on what you are photographing, until you fill the frame with what is important. most of the time the detail tells you more than everything

Fill the frame.

Fill the frame.

Dominant eye.

To have the eyes of people or animals more expressive place one eye in the center of the photograph.

Dominant eye.

Dominant eye.

Repeating patterns and figures.

As humans we like to see patterns in everything, even on photographs, but you can use it to gain attention if they are interrupted by the subject.

Repeating patterns and figures.

Repeating patterns and figures.

Symmetry.

The harmony between the two halves is pleasing to the Eye.

Symmetry.

Symmetry.

 

Pictures taken by Steve McCurry from one of the best photographers of National Geographic.

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