First of all, it’s important to hold the camera still so your pictures aren’t blurry. Here are some tips:
- Hold your breath while you snap the picture.
- Squeeze the shutter gently – don’t jab or punch it with a jerky motion.
- Keep your arms against your sides. Don’t let your elbows stick out.
- Lean against a tree or building.
- Lean your camera on a fence, table, or something else solid.
In order to take good photographs, you need to know something about light and how to control it. Here are some pointers:
- The best times to take pictures are early morning and late afternoon or early evening. The worst time is between 10 AM and 2:00 PM. Bright sunlight makes people squint and casts dark shadows on the people or objects you’re photographing.
- A cloudy day often produces better pictures than a sunny day, as colors are more pleasing. Bright overcast is ideal.
- The sun doesn’t need to be right behind you, but don’t aim your camera directly at it or you’ll end up with lens flare – small dots of light on the picture.
The most important part of photography is seeing and composing good photographs. Your photos can be clear and sharp, with good color, and still be as boring as a dried-out hamburger. Learn to look around you for interesting scenes. Walk around and look at your subject from different angles. Keep these things in mind when composing a shot:
- Don’t always put the most interesting object in the center. Imagine lines dividing your viewfinder into nine parts, like a tic-tac-toe diagram. The four places where the lines cross are the most pleasing places for your main subject to appear. This is known as the rule of thirds.
- Framing your subject sometimes makes a more interesting photo. Use something in the foreground, such as a tree, a fence or a doorway to frame your subject.
- Turn the camera sideways to get a vertical shot when the subject is taller than it is wide, such as a tree, a person standing, or a lighthouse.
- Look very carefully at everything in the viewfinder. You will be concentrating on your subject, but the camera will record everything that’s there. Don’t include overflowing trash cans, trees growing out of people’s heads, or cluttered countertops.
- If the object is moving, leave more space in front of it than behind, so it doesn’t look as if it’s moving out of the picture.
- Get close to your subject so it appears large in the viewfinder.