Thursday, April 15, 2010

Photo tips

I read somewhere recently that a good blogger offers readers something.
With that in mind I'd thought I'd do a little series of tips for people who want to take better pictures. Everyone has a camera right? And we've all been there, sorting through dozens, sometimes hundreds of disappointing photos.

I'm not going to get into hard-core technical stuff, just a few of the first things that I learned that improved my pictures almost right away.

Here goes.

Tip #1: Get closer to your subject

Yep, sometimes you're photographing the big picture and you've intentionally made the people really small, standing next to the Pyramids or what have you. But most of the time, when you're photographing people get that lens right in their face (probably better to zoom if you don't want Aunt Ethel to give you a good whack upside the head. And if you don't have a zoom, and there's no threat of violence, use your built in feet).

Since I don't take pictures of people (unless I have to) I'll use bird photos to illustrate.

Here we have two female red-winged black birds in a winter scene. Wow wee. Pretty drab.

I have done nothing to this photo, it is exactly as shot. At the time I liked the two birds facing in different directions and thought I might be able to do something with that once I got home to the digital darkroom (computer).

And here we have the much-manipulated final version that I decided was too poor quality to be of use, but still illustrates the point that the close up of the bird is far more eye-catching than the picture of the bird where it's about the same size as a pencil eraser.

There you go. Photo tip #1 is get closer to your subject. And this is for you folks, it's not just a way for me to make use of photos that I would otherwise deem too grainy and unfocussed to show. Really.


Canuck said...

I love your idea of photo tips! I would also love to know how you take some of your bird photos, if you're willing to share 'those' secrets.

kenflett said...

Those are really good tips Heather.
And you take some amazing nature/birdlike photographs, which is really difficult, must be all of your stealth training.

Heather Reid said...

Hi Susie,

Great. I will continue. The only secret to bird photography is long lens and being there.



These photo tips are not for you. You would be in the super advanced class that I wouldn't be able to get into.

I see some of your work is showing here and i'm excited to go see what it is.