I am constantly taking pictures of my family. Unfortunately there are sometimes when my pictures turn out fuzzy, too dark, or just boring in general. I decided to get smart about taking pictures. Here are some tips to use when you’re looking to capture the perfect shot:
1. Hold your camera at the subject’s eye level. If you are taking a picture of a child or pet its best for you to actually squat or sit so that you are on their level. If you are taking a picture of someone or something taller than you try finding a way to boost yourself up a bit.
2. Use a plain background. Before taking a picture check out what is behind them. Are there trees with branches sprouting in all directions? This is probably not going to be the best shot. A cluttered background is distracting. A plain background will bring your subject out.
3. Try using the flash outside too. Outdoors using the flash will improve your pictures. On a cloudy day the flash can brighten up your subject and make them stand out a little more. On a very sunny day the flash can lighten up dark shadows around the eyes and nose as well.
4. To get a really great shot move in on the subject. Take a few steps towards a subject or zoom in until the subject fills the viewfinder. With a picture taken like then you’ll minimize distraction and show off the subject’s details. Some cameras are equipped with a “macro” mode. This mode is useful when trying to take a close up of something small, like a flower.
5. Take vertical pictures too. Sometimes a subject looks a lot better when you change the pictures orientation. It is a good idea to take a shot both horizontally and vertically. This will ensure you get the best effect if you’re not completely sure when shooting the camera.
6. Sometimes it’s a great idea to take a picture that isn’t centered. Instead of having the subject directly in the middle of the shot, set it off towards a corner of the viewfinder. This technique can make a picture more dynamic and interesting to the viewer.
7. Know when your flash will work best. Pictures taken out of your “flash range” will come out too dark. Most cameras have a flash range of about ten feet, approximately four steps away. Check your camera’s manual to figure out what sort of “flash range you are dealing with.
8. Use natural lighting. When taking a picture of someone it’s best to take shots on cloudy days. It’s difficult to get a great picture when the sun is directly overhead. This normally creates a lot of harsh, dark shadows on the face. The best position for the sun is high and in front of you subjects. If you are taking a scenic picture, the bests times to get the perfect shot would be early and late day.
9. Shoot at the highest resolution your camera will allow. If you want to print the pictures you take you’ll get better results with larger files. If you want to email the pictures, you can always decrease the file size later. Starting off with a low-resolution image isn’t going to give you the best shot for printing however.
10. Deal with unnatural light the smart way. There are a lot of different types of light out there and most aren’t helpful with photography. Traditional bulbs can make subjects look yellow and fluorescent bulbs can give a green hue to pictures. Most cameras will have the capability to deal with this problem. You can set the “white balance” on your camera to “tungsten” (for traditional light bulbs) or “fluorescent.” Make sure to turn on your flash if you’re close enough so that takes over as the main light source as well. If all else fails, many editing programs can fix unnatural light issues.