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  • Fifteen tips that'll improve your photography! Here we go.

  • I'm gonna start with something everyone thinks they want to hear, but no one

  • actually wants to hear: Use the camera you already have. Every mainstream DSLR

  • and mirrorless made within the last 10 years is amazing.

  • You'll take better pictures if you master the camera you've already got,

  • rather than replacing it with something else. Now, you'd think that people

  • would like hearing that. Your camera is good! But what people like hearing even

  • more is, your camera sucks. Because then they can argue with someone, and they can

  • rally their team members who use the same camera, and it builds this group

  • camaraderie. So, I hate to break the news, but the camera that you've already got

  • is amazing. Spending your time researching new cameras, arguing about

  • brands... it will not improve your photography. If you're not taking the

  • photos that you want, it's because you're setting the camera incorrectly, or you

  • need to put more time into the creative side of things. And that's the key. Use

  • the camera that you've already got, and learn how to set everything correctly.

  • Number two. On the creative side of the equation, let's talk about light.

  • Different mood, right? The light in your photo is never neutral. It always says

  • something. Harsh light, harsh emotions. Gentle light, gentle emotions. What you

  • should always be doing is thinking about the light - and also thinking about how it

  • matches, or doesn't match, the emotions of your subject. It's the "Grand Unified

  • Theory of Photography." When the light and the subject have unified emotions, your

  • photography will be grand! Was that too much? It is true, though.

  • Here's a technical tip: Don't overexpose the highlights in your photo. That sounds

  • like it goes without saying, but what I mean is that if you have the choice

  • between overexposing the highlights and underexposing the shadows, it's much

  • better to underexpose the shadows. Because dark shadows, you can actually

  • recover surprisingly well. Blown-out highlights are just gone

  • forever. And that's perfectly fine if it's something like the Sun in your

  • photo, where you don't really need any highlight detail, but the rest of the

  • time, you've got to be really careful about them. Actually base the rest of

  • your exposure around preserving the highlights.

  • If you really want to improve your photography, you cannot just be on autopilot. You've

  • got to put thought into your photos. And that's both sides of the equation -

  • technical and creative. With your feet to the fire, is every single camera setting

  • correct? And the same goes for composition. Is there anything at all

  • that you can still improve? These are not quick questions to answer. That's why one

  • of my biggest recommendations is to slow things down.

  • Maybe you can't, if you're doing something like sports photography, but

  • there's a direct relationship between taking your time to get everything right

  • and taking better pictures.

  • Okay, what about using a tripod? When is that going to be

  • a good idea? Well, I would say if your subject isn't moving, almost always.

  • Even if your subject *is* moving, you should still weigh the benefits of a

  • tripod before you leave it at home. And this is not just about image quality,

  • either - although you will definitely get better image quality when you use a

  • tripod. It's also about, previous tip, taking your time. You have a much better

  • starting point to work from when your camera is on a tripod. You can set one

  • composition, and then change minor things about it without a problem.

  • Personally, nine times out of ten, I would pick an entry-level DSLR with a tripod

  • over the best camera on the market without one. Next up, when is the best

  • time to use a flash? Maybe when it's dark, or you're doing some clever studio

  • lighting, or maybe when you're in the back row of a concert. That one's wrong. I

  • would argue that the best time to use a flash, especially the built-in flash on

  • your camera, is on a bright sunny day. It's called "fill flash." What it does is

  • get rid of those harsh shadows. I use it a lot in macro photography because it's

  • very common for the subject to have some dark shadows on it. And then fill flash

  • is also really, really helpful for outdoor portrait photography. So, just

  • because it's sunny outside does not mean that you should put your flash away. A

  • lot of times, it's actually the exact opposite. Okay, this is something that I

  • run into a lot as a landscape photographer - the scene in front of me is

  • amazing, and I get so wrapped up in it that I just don't pay attention to

  • anything else. So this next tip has really helped me out,

  • many, many times: Look behind you. Not right now - I mean, unless you feel a creeping sense

  • that someone's watching you - I'm talking about when you're out taking pictures. I

  • was in the middle of taking these photos when I realized that there was a rainbow

  • behind me. I ran to a spot that I'd scouted out

  • earlier, and I managed to take this landscape photo. Definitely would have

  • missed this if I hadn't turned around.

  • A landscape photo is nice. So is a bird

  • photo, or a portrait photo. But are any of them really successful on their own? The

  • best photos aren't just nice. They tell a story. So, which one sounds more

  • interesting to you - a photo taken of sand dunes on a nice day, or the same

  • composition as a sand storm approaches and turns everything into a crazy

  • nightmare? That's why you should capture your subject doing something. Even

  • something minor, like showing a slight smile or jumping over a puddle. Or, for

  • landscape photographers, try to capture your *scene* telling a story - like the

  • sandstorm example, or an amazing cloud overhead. Either way, photography is all

  • about the story. Keep that in mind.

  • Here's another tip about camera gear: Keep the

  • front of your lens clean. It's very basic, but it's also genuinely weird how often

  • I see photographers who have just the dirtiest possible front element. And, in

  • the same category as a dirty lens, is a low-quality filter. They will really

  • damage your image quality. Geez, this sounds like an advertisement for a filter

  • company. I'm not trying to sell you anything! I just want you to improve your

  • photography. Personally, I never use any UV filter (or clear filter) at all, except

  • in cases where I also need protective eyewear for whatever I'm photographing. I

  • used to use a cheap UV filter when I was starting out, and I ruined a couple of

  • good photos that way, so don't make the same mistake.

  • Number ten: Move your feet.

  • because sitting too long is bad for you. Also, this applies to photography. When

  • you're out taking pictures, a lot of people's first instinct is to set up the

  • tripod, set up the camera. Or, just hold the camera up to your eye and take a

  • picture. But you can do way better than that. You've got to move around. Stand

  • back from your subject; get up close. Move the camera from eye level to, like, knee

  • level. Seriously, you'll get better pictures if you find

  • the perfect position for your camera, and then match the tripod to that position -

  • not the other way around.

  • Once you've taken the photo, you still have work to

  • do. It's not as fancy as everything else, but editing your pictures is a big deal.

  • It helps you guide your viewer's eye through the photo and also capture the

  • right emotions. And it's really easy to overdo post-processing. I highly

  • recommend being subtle about it - but if that's not your style, at least make sure

  • that none of your edits are permanent! "Save As" rather than "Save" your photos. Or,

  • better yet, do your post-processing in non-destructive software like Capture One

  • or Lightroom. That way, you're storing all your edits in a separate file rather

  • than baking them onto the image.

  • One of the most important parts of becoming a

  • better photographer is to organize and back up your photos with a good system.

  • You don't own your photos. Chaos owns your photos. The moment that you turn your

  • back, the universe will conspire to delete every picture that you've ever

  • taken. Here's a test - do any of your photos have the same file

  • name, number one? And if your house burns down, God forbid, would you lose all your

  • photos? The answer to both of those questions should be, "No, of course not, are

  • you crazy?!" Unfortunately, that's not the answer that

  • I hear most of the time. And that's really one of the biggest differences

  • that I see between professional and amateur photographers: how they deal with

  • their data.

  • Every photographer out there has some weak points. Doesn't matter how

  • good you are - there's always something that you can improve. And that's a good

  • thing! But you've got to avoid working around your weak points. Instead, barrel

  • straight through them. A couple examples. If you're trying to wrap your head

  • around camera settings, you should never fall back and use automatic mode. Or, if

  • you just can't make the light from your flash look natural, don't chicken out

  • and take all your portraits next to a window. Instead, put the time into

  • learning what you don't understand. Not always easy, but you won't learn anything

  • if all you do is work around your weak points.

  • Next up, look back through your

  • old photos. If you just watched the previous tip, and you couldn't come up

  • with any weak points, here's a really good spot to find them. Because everyone

  • takes some photos that they don't like. On average, why do

  • your unsuccessful photos not work? Is it exposure, focus, composition?

  • Whatever it is, that's useful information. Also, going through your old photos is

  • great just because you'll find some good ones that you totally overlooked earlier.

  • I didn't notice this photo the first time around, and now it's one that I

  • really like. Every single photographer that I know has the exact same story.

  • The big, gigantic secret of photography is practice. Practice the things you don't

  • understand, and practice the things that you do.

  • That's how you get better at anything, not just photography. So, close out of

  • YouTube. Geez, the algorithm's gonna kill this video if I say that. Leave YouTube

  • running in the background. Go outside. Take some pictures. Sure, keep these tips

  • in mind - they're very good! But fundamentally, that is how you're going

  • to improve your photography.

Fifteen tips that'll improve your photography! Here we go.

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15 Photography Tips In Under 10 Minutes!

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    Henry 楊 posted on 2020/06/17
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