Hello! I’ll be starting a series of blog posts to bridge the gap between novices and amateurs into pro-amateurs and professionals.
This guide will be what sets one photographer apart from the next photographer!
So. youve bought your Enty-level DSLR Canon Rebel, a 60D or 7D, or even a 5DII !(or nikon equivalent) but you still wondering why youre not producing images close to a photographer you admire.
Well there maybe a couple of reasons why… to me, it goes by experience, knowledge, skill, and THEN equipment and ill break it down as to why these are priorities.
1. Experience – photography is an art where personal experiences influence heavily on how you portray your work. anything that you do can be counted as an experience, whether its traveling, socializing, accidents, trauma, rewards, or just moments. even if they dont mean anything, they still add up just like leveling in any RPG game. just go out there and do something with your life. this does not only apply to photography but applies to anything else you do.. so in order for you to gain knowledge about photography, you need to experience it first.
2. Knowledge – so, you bring your camera everywhere with you, taking snapshots of your friends and trying to be artsy and stuff but sometimes, the pictures dont come out exactly how you want it to come out. you dunno why amirite? well educate yourself! why are your photos not anything like your friends, professionals, or even that random guy with a camera who seems to be slightly better than you. knowledge about photography comes through experience and trial & error! learning about all the aspects of the camera will become invaluable in your success. camera settings as well as composition.
- Shutter Speed is how long the shutter is left open in order to allow light onto the sensor to capture the image. for example, blurry photos are because the shutter was left open too long. a good rule of thumb is to have 1/(your lens length) as the slowest you want to go. i probably consider shutterspeed probably in one of the lower priorities for camera settings
- Aperture is inside the lens and are blades that allow light into the camera sensor. usually termed with “wide or closed” f/stop, depending on what f/stop you use, you’ll be allowing more/less light into your camera sensor. when people talk about “stops” of light, its referring to this chart ! f/1.4|f/2|f/2.8|f/4|f/5.6|f/8|f/11|f/16|f/22|f/32Another thing people reference aperture with is Depth of Field & BOKEH~!!! a wide aperture will give you cool DOF but also the risk of missing focus. theres a difference between being out of focus and blurry. but anyways the aperture is probably the highest priority just due to how the picture looks as well as certain elements that occur due to aperture settings.
- ISO was derived from film and does the same thing on digital sensor. ISO controls how sensitive to light your camera sensor is. the problem with ISO is higher you go, noisier it gets(grainy images) therefore, you generally want to keep the iso as low as possible. generally L or 100 during the day time, 400 or 800 near dusk, and 1600 or 3200 indoors or darkness. these are just guidelines but whats important is the actual subject so use higher iso’s if necessary. This is 2nd in priority.
- Composition is part of knowledge as well such as rule of thirds, leading lines, golden ratio, weighted subject and placement. although you can read up about composition, its a lot of experience as well so you have to remember that in order for you to learn, you must experience
credit to @kylekruchok
TLDR- aperture, iso, shutterspeed. i change those in that order and composition cant be learned just by reading.
3. Skill – after getting the idea, knowing how you’re going to shoot the photo, now you have to actually take the photo but this also applies to post processing. pressing the shutter button is simple but at the same time you cant be stupid about taking your photo. your skill level can easily be determined by how much thought you put into a photo before you actually take the photo. in camera exposure is most important and then it goes to extra stuff like adding random details like sunflares, interesting bokeh patterns, holding your hands steady if your shutterspeed is slow, how to make an uninteresting setting interesting and then its how you edit a photo, how to fix incamera mistakes, removing annoying things, proper color correction and all that post production stuff.
credit to @Sarakiesling
4. DAT L LENSES EQUIPMENTS~ – with all joking aside, theres no need for you to buy expensive lenses if youre not making money off of photography, but there are certain lenses, bodies and accessories that you dont need to buy in order to achieve “That photo” granted there is a reason for buying expensive lenses but its not necessary if you understand your equipment and abilities!
and now the most important part of photography. having fun and doing what you love. if youre completely satisfied with whatever youre doing right now, then this whole post means NOTHING because what matters is enjoying photography and what it means to you. although i just glided over some of these topics, the next step would be finding your focus and that’ll be in the next post regarding the different genre’s and what separates decent photos to great !!