They say a picture is worth a thousand words, an art that can capture a single moment and hold it still for decades to come. It’s something that almost everyone in the world has access to nowadays no matter where they are. Cameras are even built into our telephones, so we have the power of photography in the palm of our hands. The art of capturing a single moment can be dated all the way back before medieval times with painting, portraits,and drawing but the permanent images captured with cameras began in the late 1830’s in the area of France by a man named Joseph Nicephore Niepce. His success began with an experiment using a portable camera obscura in an attempt to expose a pewter plate that had been coated with bitumen in light.
The camera obscura was essentially the start of cameras and photography taking place. To briefly explain, the camera obscura is a boxy shape that contains a dark, closed space with a hole on one of the sides. The hole on that side has to be small in proportion to the rest of the box so that the camera obscura can work. Light comes in from the hole on the side creating an image on the surface where the light meets, but with this older technique, the image is flipped upside down. In more modern cameras you’ll see that they use mirrors to reserve this affect.
Because of the time period cameras and photography were being invented, it took a long time for photography to be publicly recognized. As the camera slowly progressed with more success it wasn’t till the late 1880’s that cameras and photography were publicly advertised. The first camera to go on the market is a brand many people still use today, commonly known as Kodak.
Behind the Camera
As decades passed and cameras became a booming business more people took a fascination in photography whether it was in front of the camera or behind it. Nowadays, cameras are everywhere and anyone can easily take a picture with their smartphone camera or with one of the many camera devices people can purchase in shops and stores. Since cameras have been modernized and are more commonly used in this day and age, more people have taken an interest in photography. With this peaked interest, there are photography classes, lectures, and webinars set out for anyone who wants to learn more and master the art of photography. But even if you aren’t able to take a class or sit in a lecture, there are still ways you can learn about photography and become a successful photographer. In this decade, we’re lucky because we can have vast amounts of information right at our fingertips through the internet whether it be through articles and websites or videos and online webinars. With that being said, that gives you the chance to learn a lot about photography right in the comfort of your own home.
Now, if you’re getting into photography and you’re looking for the best tips and techniques, this article can help you out a lot. Photography is an amazing skill to have, as well as being something you can really enjoy. Taking your photography skills to the next level is something that you should enjoy and be happy about but like any other hobbies and skills, practice makes perfect. Here are a few techniques that can help you take your photography game to the next level.
- The Rule of Thirds – Getting the right angle with the right composition can be almost impossible at times, so this tip can save you a lot of time and effort. The rule of thirds is simple, and will get easier after some practice. To start, imagine four lines, you want to lying horizontally across your image and the other two lines lying vertically, which will create nine even squares. With some pictures, their best focal point will be in the center square but if you place the subject of the picture slightly off-center at one of the squares intersecting points of these imaginary lines it can give your photograph a more aesthetically pleasing and composed picture. This tip can give your photographs that edge that makes them more appealing to the eye.
- Camera Shake – This one is simple but effective. When your camera shakes causing your picture to be blurry it can ruin an otherwise really good picture so here’s a tip to avoid that. Learning the best position for holding your camera correctly will significantly help your images. Holding your camera with both hands can help steady your camera, making sharper images. Hold one hand at the body of your camera and the other around the lens, all while holding the camera closer to your body for that extra support. An extra tip that could help with handheld shooting, make sure that your shutter speed is at the right setting for your camera’s lens’ focal length. Wrong shutter speeds, like shutter speeds that are too slow can unintentionally make your entire photograph come out blurry. Having that correct shutter speed can help improve your photographs more than you think.
- Using a Polarizing Filter – If you find yourself buying and investing in a filter for your camera, make it a polarizer. This can make a world of difference in your photographs, giving them that WOW factor. When looking into a polarizer filter, the recommended type will be circular, giving your camera more TTL (through the lens) metering which will give off more auto exposure. A polarizing filter will help reduce reflections from water as well as any metal or glass, as well as improving the colors in the sky and foliage. It does all of this all while protecting your lens.
- Simpler Backgrounds and No Indoor Flash – This is two tips in one, and while they are quite simple and straightforward, they can improve photographs so much. To start, a simple background can consist of neutral colors and simple patterns, even just a plain wall, anything really that keeps your eyes drawn to the focal point, not the background. Find a place that wont have distractions in the background causing eyes to wander from your main point. This tip is especially important for your images you create that are off center. Next up, don’t use flash indoors if you can avoid it. Flash can have a harsh effect, making an unnatural effect on your indoor portraits. There are ways to avoid flash, like using lighting around which can make for a unique picture but also if you push up the ISO (ISO 800 to 1600), it can make a big difference for whatever shutter speed you choose to use. Even using a wider aperture can give you a nice blurred background.
There are many more tips and different techniques you can use to improve your photography skills, whether professionally or even just for fun. Using your resources, doing research, and even asking other photographers for advice on different techniques will ultimately give you the best results that you want for your photographs.
If you are a business owner who would benefit from photography but simply don’t have the time to do it yourself, there are always companies who offer photography services you can benefit from.