Photography Tips for Beginners
By Dom at Eversure,
07 February 2020
If you’re looking for some sure-fire ways to help improve your photo-taking then look no further! We’ve tried to put together a comprehensive list of the most commonly forgotten about tricks to turn your photos from holiday snaps to professional looking images.
The Rule of Thirds
We’ll start with a really simple concept, but one that people often forget about whilst composing a photo. It its base level, the rule of thirds is a technique in which you imagine your image split into 9 equal parts (see below), by doing this you can see 4 key points at each crossroads intersection. The idea being that if you place the main subject of your photos in the top, bottom, left or right box you’ll get a well composed image. So essentially, avoid the middle box.
You may not know this, but the rule of thirds is such a great tool for photographers that most DSLRs actually have a rule of thirds option to select whilst your taking a photo so you can see the grid whilst shooting – now you’ve got no excuse to forget it!
Become an Exposure Expert!
There are two important elements of photography that stand in your way for becoming a master of exposure:
- Aperture – how wide you open the lens
- Shutter speed – how long you open the lens for
How much light you let into your lens makes a huge difference to the quality of your photo. An over-exposed photo looks far too bright and grainy, whilst an under-exposed one will leave you squinting, trying to make out any detail at all.
With shutter speed you have a bit more flexibility. If you’re trying to photograph a moving object, the length of time you open the lens for can elevate a photo to look professional. It’s best to have a play with your shutter speed as you’re taking the photo, and fast flowing river like the one below is a good example to try different speeds out on.
The use of depth in photos can really bring your compositions to life. These three great and relatively easy techniques will help you with a basic understanding of how depth can play a big part in improving your photos.
Find your leading lines. One of the best ways to create a sense of depth is to use what are called “leading lines”. These are imaginary lines that the eyes can follow, usually from the bottom of the image to the top. They can be quite obvious (like in the image below) or a bit more abstract. The idea is that the eyes follow the lines from the foreground to the background. The best way to achieve this is by using a wide-angle lens which will fit as much into the frame as possible.
Another good way to get a strong sense of depth in your photos is to shoot through an object in the extreme foreground. This is a fantastic technique which typically reverses the focal point from the foreground to the background. By focusing on an object in the background the eye has to travel ‘through’ the image thus giving a great sense of depth.
The last little ace up your sleeve when trying to achieve depth is your use of colour. This is a popular technique in more controlled environments such as studios, as changing colour too much on landscape and natural photos can make them look unrealistic. A bright and vibrant subject in front of a dull background (see below) really makes the image jump out.
Learn more - don't buy more.
It might be tempting to collect the latest and most expensive equipment to play with, especially when companies seem to release new products every year.
It’s much better to understand what you want to get out of photography and what you’ll need to achieve it, before going and spending a load of money on a camera and lens that actually do so much more than you need. Once you’ve worked out your fundamental needs, you’ll be able to find the right equipment for you and your level.
Don't Forget Insurance!
Whatever equipment you use, and however you choose to take photos, do forget to think about insurance.
Most people think their equipment is covered under their home content’s insurance, but often this isn’t the case – generally contents insurance won’t cover your equipment when it’s not in your home.
A camera insurance policy with Eversure can cover accidental loss and damage around d the world. We also offer in-vehicle cover and work on a new for old basis.
Head to our camera insurance page to find out more about our cover levels and to see if we’re right for you and your camera equipment.