My Penny’s Worth: Photography

Firstly, I know I have been terribly delayed with my posts. I have been unable to keep up with my schedule, and that is due to a variety of reasons. The Australian Open being just one of them. The meaty details will be let out in a matter of a couple of weeks, and then you, my dear readers, will completely understand.


Now, as someone who enjoys taking, and sharing, photos, there are a few things that I believe make a good photograph. Almost everyone today has access to a camera, be it in the form of their phone, a digital ‘point and shoot’ or a DSLR. For this mere mortal, fiddling about with buttons and settings, a degree here and then another there has never been anything to write home about. For the few months that I did have a DSLR, I  admit that I thoroughly enjoyed its power, but it is also true that I did not dedicate too much time to learning many settings.

If you are new to photography and want to up your game, I’d say, join Instagram. You will find tonnes of inspiration, and will be able to observe how the pros do it, and pick up tips. Read on if you want my penny’s worth of advice on what I believe are the golden rules to good pictures. But since they come from me, they might just be silver. I’ll let you decide.

What I’m about to share with you all is in no way an exhaustive guide, nor are they rules; do what makes you happy.


1. Lines: If the object/subject you are clicking has lines on/behind/under them, either vertical or horizontal, frame it in such a way that those lines are straight. Or at least fix the skew before you post it somewhere public. I find that it gives a more finished look to the photo, like you actually cared to spend more than a second to p&s.

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Lines, lines, they need to be parallel, and perpendicular, unless you’re deliberately trying to piss people off.


2. The Horizon: When shooting a landscape, sunset and such, if you take the time to ensure that you frame it in such a manner that the horizon line is, well, horizontal, it will make a world of difference. It is one of my pet peeves to have a skewed horizon line in photos.

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While this may still look skewed due to the colours, I assure you, that horizon is as straight as a ruler!


3. Editing: It is absolutely okay to touch up your photos a bit. Sometimes you just don’t have time to spend ages perfecting a shot, or what you’re clicking might be time sensitive. The above points can be achieved with a tiny bit of tweaking. However, bear in mind that you might lose the periphery of the image as the tilt is adjusted into a rectangle or square.

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A tricky demo, this one, as I was standing on a ramp. See, my flip-flop clad feet were visible in the original. Then I had to adjust the image so that it’s straight, and lost out on the feet. Terrible business.


4. Focus: No matter what kind of hurry you’re in, taking a couple of seconds to check that the subject, say, a bunch of sunbathing turtles is what is in focus. And not, say, the abundance of foliage in the foreground, as can be seen below.

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5. Over editing: Ugh, seriously, I hate this. When was the last time you saw cobalt blue trees or buildings that had halos around them? Some people just don’t know when to stop. However, having said that, if you mean to go for that effect, it can be stunning. But I’d still suggest you use that super power sparingly.

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What’s not to like about purple clouds and ombré waves, I ask! Surreal? Yes. Just remember, the watchword is ‘sparingly’.


These are just the bare essentials, and I would like to share more of what I believe helps to make a great photo. So keep a look-out for that one. Also, comment below with your personal tips and tricks for great photos; let’s compare notes! 🙂

 

 

 

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