A Crash Course in Professional Photography

Digital camera rechargeable batteries

Here is a interesting statistic to get your attention: The first photo was taken in 1826. If you did the math, you know that was 189 years ago. Even though billions of people have had 189 years to take photographs, about 10% of the pictures humankind has ever produced were taken in the last 12 months. As the ease-of-use and convenience of digital cameras continue to increase, so will the massive quantity of photos being produced on a daily basis. There are more than 250 billion photos on Facebook already, and that number is growing by 350 million photos every day.

If you are a blogger, a business owner, or just want your photos to stand out against the 250 billion pictures already out there, it is important to understand the basic principles of photography now more than ever. When you post a photograph that meets professional guidelines, it is twice as likely to be shared by other social media users than one that looks like it was taken with your phone. Fortunately, it has never been easier to produce professional photos using a digital cameras with these easy photography tips:

  1. Consider the Framing and Composition of Your Picture
    A very simple way to make sure that your photo has good composition is to use the “rule of thirds”. The rule of thirds just recommends that when you are taking your photo, mentally divide the scene into three sections and put the subject of your photo in the far left or far right section. Although it might frustrate the OCD in you, putting the star of the photo off-center makes it much more appealing to the eye.
  2. Capture the Best Lighting
    The second most important principal in creating a professional photo is the lighting. Ideally, you will always be taking pictures on a sunny day with perfect natural ambient lighting. Wait, you say that’s not always possible? Fortunately, you can improve the lighting in your photo with the the settings on even basic point and shoot digital cameras now.

    Setting the ISO to the highest level will shoot the picture quickly and capture the most light as possible. Also, set the white balance to match the lighting of the environment you’re in. Many cameras can do this automatically, but don’t always get it right. Play around with the white balance until it looks right.

  3. Professional Lenses Create Professional Photos
    This might be the most easily overlooked tip. There are so many lenses available that contribute so much to a photo. While there are many lenses on the market for shooting every focal length, you can cover most of your needs with a C mount digital camera. Most camera stores carry C mount digital cameras for reasonable prices. The benefit of the C mount digital camera is the lenses simply screw on and off, offering you the ability to quickly change the style of your photo as your eye sees fit. With a simple C mount digital camera, you can add spacers to achieve the look of other lenses.

While these are the three “quick hits” to producing professional-looking photos, the best way to perfect the photos you put online is to get out there, take lots of photos and figure it out through trial and error!

Do you consider yourself a photography buff? Do you have a great tip for people who want to take better photos? Please leave a comment below!