Tips for Better Photographs

For 15 years I was a professional photographer.  I captured pictures of babies; families; and, most predominantly, high school seniors. I loved it. It was a huge creative outlet for me for many years.  However, just over a year ago my husband, Drew, and I decided to go into business together and with that decision I closed the doors of my cute little studio, just off the square of our quaint downtown.  I wasn’t sure I was making the right decision, but I was confident that I wouldn’t be saying goodbye to photography forever and that helped. I was right. I still take photos on a daily basis, I just no longer have the pressure of producing a product for someone else.  I capture images for myself now. I find that I use my phone for image gathering more than my “big girl” camera these days.

Regardless if it’s a phone or a digital SLR, there are a few tips for capturing beautiful images!  I thought I’d share a few of them.

5 Tips for Better Photos:

  1. Remove distracting objects from the background of your image.  To best execute this, right before I click the camera, I do a quick scan of the background. I’m looking to make sure there are no branches coming out of someone’s head, no clutter that would take away from the focal point of the image.

2. Mix up your angle.  We most often take images from the vantage point of standing.  I challenge you to change up your perspective. Capture photos by laying on your back,  low on your belly, crouching over the object or from the side. It make the image more creative when we don’t always shoot from the traditional “standing position”.

3. Implement the Rule of Thirds.  The Rule of Thirds is the concept that breaks the image into a tic-tac-toe frame and put the object of interest into one of the intersecting lines.  If you’re using an iphone, the grid can be turned on by going to settings photo & camera and turn “grid” on. It will make your photos more appealing to the eye when it’s not smack dab in the middle of the frame.

4. Use natural light whenever possible. Using the flash on a camera/phone tends to produce really harsh light that distorts the eyes, blows out the color and removes shadows.  Using natural light well, emphasises the eyes, enriches colors and enhances beautiful shadows.

5. Don’t Pose your Subject & Force them to Say Cheese: If you’re taking a photo of a person, ask them a few questions.  Say something silly. Do anything to allow them to relax and give a genuine expression for the camera. It doesn’t even have to be a smile. They don’t have to be looking at the camera.  Some of the most meaningful images are captured when the subject isn’t grinning.


Note: All the images were captured with an iPhone.

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