Right from the start – you don’t need a new camera. These photography tips don’t cost you a penny, you don’t have to buy anything, on the contrary, maybe they even improve your photo box a little bit and you’ll get rid of unnecessary ballast.
You will long, if you implement and follow them consistently, you have enough to do ,-)
The good news is – these photography tips are – just like my article about the beginner’s mistakes – no technical “how to” tips, I don’t want to call them the “best tricks” and yet – or precisely because of it – you will learn a lot if you heed them.
These photography tips are more of a suggestion on how to customize your mindset to achieve much better photos without having to buy new cameras or other toys.
But beware – here lies the famous “dog in detail”.
1 Photography tips: save money reduce your equipment (and be strict with it)
One of my favorite photography tips with which I start almost every conversation about suggestions for improvement, Use a camera, a lens, fix yourself as little as possible and try to get the best out of it.
Photography has been in our pockets since smartphones and quality is increasing year after year. More equipment brings more possibilities and therefore very easily more chaos in the head. You lose the focus on the essentials and the creativity in the photos decreases instead of increasing.
I don’t want to say you don’t need anything but the camera in your host pocket. But less is more and too much can slow down more than it brings. No matter what you have with you, it counts what you can and what you get out of existing equipment.
Whether you attach 1 lens per month or one per year is irrelevant. Don’t walk with too much equipment. Not only does this not necessarily help you to take better photos, it may even prevent you from doing so.
Sometimes it is extremely helpful to limit yourself exclusively to a camera with a lens and the basics of the exposure triangle.
If your head says “oh, with THE camera or with THE lens I could …” Just slow it down immediately and ask you – what could I do with what I have at my disposal.
At this point also briefly mentioned – Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Leica, … please don’t let yourself be drawn to becoming a “religious follower” of a camera brand. There is so much (largely nonsense) discussed online and at every turn there is someone who can explain to you why the brand they use is the only true one.
The only real camera for you is the one you feel comfortable with and that does what you need.
If you’re just looking for a new camera, maybe this article that I made about it will help you.
And again – as we know, you will certainly always have a camera with you. In your pocket If you are still looking for the right camera for you, maybe my article with the test will help you with the test
2 Become a better “storyteller”
Photographers don’t work with cameras. Yes, of course, we do this because it is our tool. But just as a chef wouldn’t say he works with knives and pots, but with ingredients and his creativity, so we shouldn’t reduce ourselves to our cameras.
What we really work with, what our actual ingredients are, is limited to light (we’ll add to that) and tell stories.
A good photo is of course characterized by appealing image design, lighting, image structure, colors (or in case of black and white contrasts) etc. and on the other hand (in my opinion even more important) – it tells a good story.
Whether it’s the expression of a person in a portrait or a reportage photo, even a successful landscape photo, they all ideally tell a story. This can, but does not have to be “obvious”.
It can also be enough to stimulate the viewer’s imagination, so that the photo tells its own story for each who sees it.
But in any case, a good picture in any form tells anyone some kind of story
So work on your own “storytelling”.
Work to see for yourself which stories appeal to you in photos of others. Find out why a photo appeals to you or why it doesn’t appeal to you. Discover the storyteller in you and try to incorporate that into your photos.
3 Respect every unassuming motif and make a rock star out of it
We talk too often about a lack of motives.Too often.
“Well, there was nothing nice”. There are motives everywhere and it’s all up to you and your head to make what you make of it. The more inconspicuous a motif may be, the more opportunity it gives you to grow.
Even more so, if you think the motive would be “bad,” or it wouldn’t be there at all. There you have the most potential to become a better photographer.
Walk through the world with your eyes open and find colors, shapes and motifs where others don’t see them. That’s what makes the difference.
The better you practice this, the more your photography will grow on it. And speaking of “going” – stay on the move. Standing in one place, we don’t really see a scenery, only when we move, things that were previously hidden come to light.
New perspectives are not found by standing in one place and thinking about them, but in the movement. Standing still and “zooming” is one of the most painful beginner’s mistakes that some people go through for a very long time this applies to life as well as to photography.
4 Jump on the supposedly “bad light” and make the most of it
You know how much I insist on it: there is no “bad light”. There is only light!
Lots of light, little light, soft, hard, in all colors and variants. To talk about the fact that the light is bad and that you can’t do anything about it is easy. But it’s also wrong and doesn’t get you any further.
If you can handle your lightning properly, then there will never be “bad light” again, because you can make something out of any situation.
And even without lightning, don’t talk about the existing “bad light”.
Just try the opposite.
Challenging lighting situation? Ask yourself what you could still (or just because of it) make of the situation. The ISO of your camera is not high enough? Get light. Maybe a flashlight, a lighter, a smartphone screen … Make the most of the situation and still – or just because of it – a great photo of it.
5 Category Photography Tips you probably didn’t expect here: Glue your camera screen!
An exercise and one of my favorite photography tips that I like to pull out of my sleeve at studio workshops.
Unusually, I realise that. But it works.
Gaffer band (or something softer that doesn’t stick to the camera for years) on the LCD screen and finished. (Of course, only works with cameras with your own viewfinder “But … But… I don’t see anything anymore…” Exactly! You have to think because you don’t see anything anymore
I do it regularly “in fleiss”. Because it really helps to change the thought paths in the mind and to reverse. Of course, it is an advantage to be able to control everything immediately on the screen. But the coziness of DSLR cameras with screen sometimes makes us careless. Just press down, after all, you can immediately check if the result fits.
When you first think, think about what you’re doing and why, and then push back, you’ll save yourself tons of time and frustration in photography in the long run.
But honestly, not in every situation you have “no time to think about the settings beforehand”. Very often you just don’t want to. Do it anyway. It will train your thought process before the crush, it will benefit you enormously over time and it will become less and less strenuous. But it makes you a better photographer in the long run.
6 Go to the museum
Look at pictures of old painters. Photography tips and then museum? Yes, the great masters could not only handle a brush very well. Just as the camera is the tool for photographers, brushes and paint are the tools of the painters. But what they have worked on much more than with brushes is light.
An image is created with the brush, but the expression is determined by light, which the painter must be able to see and read. In both cases, the techniques can be learned quite quickly. What you make of it is the essential point.
Painters work just as much with light and according to the same design rules as photographers. You can break the same, the same rules but with intent. And they also work a lot with form, information and emotion in their pictures. You can learn a lot from painters as a photographer. And you also learn a little culture, so by the way.
7 Buy an analog camera
Too often this king belongs among the photography tips? Then finally listen to it Seriously, analog photography is so much fun. I don’t want to say more fun than digital. I also don’t want to tune in to this “only those who can analog, can really take pictures” – chants.
They are just nonsense!
But yes, analog photography brings you closer to photography on a slightly different level than digital photography can. Not better, but it’s a great addition, you’ll see. You get to know photography from a different perspective and also learn how to handle the minimum – aperture, exposure time, ISO and film selection on the technical side.
This will help you enormously in digital photography and for understanding. Analog cameras don’t cost much, film and elaboration are also affordable, give it a chance
8 Print your photos
Digital photography is great. We have advantages that we did not have in the darkroom at the time.
In the darkroom, the elaboration of an image was a long process. I had to lock myself in a dark room and after many hours I came out with a handful of photos. At the same time, I can now theoretically edit hundreds of photos and “finish”.
But that is precisely the point.
We don’t finish our photos anymore if we only edit and use them digitally.
We leave out the most important part of photography. Namely to take a finished photo.
Storing photos only digitally is like putting all the ingredients and the recipe on a plate in a restaurant and serving them to the guest. Wouldn’t we do it. So why digital.
If you only finish the photo digitally you never know how that on the (cheap, uncalibrated,…) other people’s screen looks.
When you print your photos, you’ll see that the value of the pictures is rising again, both for yourself and for people looking at your photos, whether it’s customers, friends, family.
9 Photography tips you don’t want to hear: Read the user manual
Really? Seriously? Did I really write this? Just when it comes to photography tips? Yes. Also I strongly recommend to take the instructions at hand.
Can you learn to take pictures with them? Certainly not.
But it helps enormously if you just know what your camera can and can’t do. And especially where you find what she can do. This gets you through point 1 – get the best out of what you already have instead of buying new stuff ,-)
10 The unexpected +1 of my photography tips: Put the camera away!
Absurd tip? Better to take pictures by putting the camera away? Ok, of course, that depends a lot on how often you have them in your hand. But if you are one of those who take a lot of pictures and just (again) have such a phase of standstill – put the camera aside.
Photographing means telling good stories in pictures, astonishing people, entertaining, stimulating reflection, getting into a moment, in whatever form – touching them. But this also presupposes that one experiences something, is inspired and touched and is stimulated to think.
But that doesn’t happen so much when you’re constantly stuck behind the camera. As much as I love photography, sometimes we both need a break. That’s when I think in far too many situations of the day “that would be a good picture”. Then it’s time to relive moments that just exist for the moment. And they only remain in the memory.
Without a photo. (So now, open software on the computer and edit images does not apply in this case ;))
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There it is even more unexpected than here in this article. To put it mildly, 😉