Tips for taking better photos!


Taking photo of bride

First off, it’s important to know THE MOMENT OUT SHINES ALL! I stand behind this 100%! There have been many times where the photo I’ve taken hasn’t been in the best lighting or in the right focus, but the moment or meaning of what the photo is telling us is way more important than that. ALWAYS remember that! 50 years from now, your kids, grandkids, and so on, will not care about the technicalities of the image, but of what’s happening in it!


1. LIGHT - Light is EVERYTHING! Seriously! Let’s talk outside light first! Have you heard golden hour (right after sunrise or right before sunset) is the best time to take photos? It’s the time where the sun (presuming it’s a sunny day) is KISSING everything with it’s warm light. During the day, the sun is higher up in the sky, casting down harsher light and unflattering shadows on the face. If the sun is harsh (harshest around noon) try to find some shade! Also, cloudy days aren’t as bad as you would think for photos, the clouds actually create all day shade. This sometimes can be disappointing for sunset, but eat it up that even light during the afternoon!


Indoor light gets a bit more complicated. Natural light is the most flattering light, so stand in front of a window or door if possible! If you’re using natural light, turn off any artificial light lamps. That leads me to… artificial lamps aren’t the prettiest. You have cool (green or blue) tinted lights and then you have your warm (yellow or orangish) tinted lights. Note this if you're seeing everything too warm or too cool because you can use basic editing to change the temperature of the photo. Try to avoid them however by using natural light during the day if you’re going for a more polished look!


2. BACKGROUND - Don’t over think the background of a photo. A clean, plain and consistent background will really make the subject POP! A plain colored wall (doesn’t have to be white, color is fun!) is good for starters! Then by consistency, I mean a consistent color like a shrub, tree, or even body of water. Consistency could even mean a pattern like bricks! Remember though, the subjects are what really matter in a photo and that’s what you are trying to achieve… except for instances like, maybe grandma’s ugly couch seems like a bad “background” in this moment of time, but years from now it could be the talk of the photo! Tidying up can help the overall aesthetic for sure though. Simply moving a box, or an unfolded blanket spewing across the couch can be impactful! All in all, just be aware of what is in your background and know that just by changing the direction of which you are standing and having your subject pivot could be the KEY!


3. PERSPECTIVE - Perspective can change the whole feel of the photo. This is especially true with kids and pets! Instead of shooting down on your kiddos or pups, squat down and shoot more eye level to them. This is empowering your subject more, making the viewer feel right up next to them instead of staring down at them.


One last point I should make takes me back to high school. My high school digital photo teacher Mr. Hunt, warned us about the "mom camera hold." This is when the camera is being held (with no bend in the arms) out towards the subject, trying to get closer to the subject. He has forever made me chuckle because this is TOTALLY MY MOM. Still to this day I can't help but let out a slight chuckle when seeing this. & not because this is "wrong," but because Mr. Hunt was so spot on explaining it. The reason this is "wrong" is for two reasons. 1. to get closer to your subject just a take a couple steps closer to the subject because 2. holding your hands out there like that makes the camera unstable causing blurriness to be more likely. Instead, hold your camera closer into your chest creating more stability for the camera (and your arms). For extra stability you can always lean against a stationary object like a wall, pole, or even someone else's shoulder or back.


So while I hope these pointers can help, don't forget that THE MOMENT OUT SHINES ALL! Also don't forget to print your photos! It's important for the soul to look back on photos!


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