Photography is an accessible creative hobby that has something to offer for everyone. It's a fantastic way to capture moments and share your perspective with the world. Many creatives use photography as a way to unwind and de-stress. For some, that passion turns into a rewarding career.
Being a beginner is intimidating, but the rewards are well worth the effort of getting started. Here are six basic photography tips for beginners to help you take the first step.
Invest in Quality Equipment
There's no better way to learn how to take beautiful photos than with a camera that's up to the task. However, it's important to note that the price tag isn't everything when choosing a camera. You don't need the best or most expensive camera to take incredible photos; there are many high-quality beginner options to get you started.
Take a look at reviews and recommendations on Run Gun Shoot and find a camera from a reputable brand that covers all of your basic needs. Once you develop your skills and determine what your ideal subject matter is, you can start to invest in more costly, specialized equipment.
Learn About the Settings
Cameras consist of some complex machinery. To produce the images you want, you need to have a better understanding of how your camera works. That means taking some time to read about the various settings and what they do.
The most important settings to focus on include:
- Autofocus vs. manual
- RAW vs. Jpeg shooting
- Shutter speed
These settings impact how your camera captures objects in motion, how it interacts with the light, your bandwidth for editing, and your ability to create clear images.
Take Some Online Courses
As a beginner in any subject, you don't know what you don't know. Fortunately, you don't need to spend years in school to get some foundational photography skills.
To get the most out of your experience as a newcomer to photography, it's worth taking a few online courses. These will cover the basics of handling your camera and special considerations for the shooting style you want to explore. Once you understand the "rules" of photography, you can creatively break them to find your unique style.
Dedicate Time to Practicing
Once you have your camera, don't leave home without it. You never know when an opportunity will arise to capture a candid moment. It's also worth carving out dedicated time each day to take a few photos and practice your craft. The photos don't have to be meaningful — you can take a still life of a coffee cup to practice with your settings or practice angles and lighting with your dog.
Explore Different Angles and Perspectives
Don't be afraid to move around and explore different angles and perspectives while taking photos. Crouch down and shoot from the ground or find a bench to shoot from up high. A change in attitude can transform the subject of your photo and might just capture something amazing.
Learn Basic Editing Skills
While it's arguably more important to learn how to take good photos, editing is a part of the process. You don't need to become a Photoshop expert to produce beautiful images, but it helps to be able to adjust the lighting, clarity, or coloration, if necessary. The goal is to take the best images you can, then bring them the rest of the way with some simple adjustments.
It's important to note that applying a simple filter isn't the same as learning basic edits. Additionally, if you've added a vignette, you've gone too far. As you develop your foundation for taking great photos, you can start to explore more creative and abstract editing options.
With these six tips, you can start your photography journey and turn your passion into art.