1. Take Advantage of Natural Lighting
Taking advantage of natural lighting is one of the most valuable pieces of advice I can give to you when it comes to photography. Although in today’s day in age flash, reflectors and other items make it quite easy to create incredible photos, natural light is easy, looks incredible with almost any subject and (the best part for most of us) is free.
The best times of day to shoot are typically between 6am-9am and right before sunset.
My tip: Avoid shooting between 10:30am-1pm. The sun is straight up in the sky and the light will make your subject appear harsh.
2. Use The Rule of Thirds
My photography teacher my Freshman year of high school taught me this + it’s stuck with me ever since. It’s an easy composition tool that helps make your photos appear more natural and easier on the eye.
All you have to do is make an imaginary tic-tac-toe board over your image + make sure your main focus isn’t in the center square.
Here’s an example:
3. Experiment With Different Poses
When doing portrait photography, experiment with different poses.
4. Gray Days Are Your New BFF
Overcast days can increase color saturation in your photos and really make them pop– take advantage of these days + get outside!
5. Shoot In Burst Mode
When you’re going to be shooting one subject for a long period of time, I suggest turning on good ole’ burst mode. Burst mode will ensure that you capture a wide range of expressions and hopefully get “the shot” you’re looking for.
6. Stay Steady
Often, especially when shooting outdoors while performing an activity (even something as simple as walking), we’re snapping away hoping to get the next great Insta photo.
What you really need to do though for the great shot is slow down, stay steady, focus on your subject + then snap.
If you’re shooting a high motion activity (such as someone running) or night shooting, I suggest a tripod as well.
7. Get Up Close
Getting up close + personal with a subject can help you (and the viewers) in noticing details you may not have noticed before!
Remember to turn on macro mode (almost all basic point + shoots and smart phones have this mode) to ensure that the subject stays in focus.
Take advantage of these + optimize your photos for top-notich viewing pleasure.
I know, I know, I know.
But I promise, you can make this fun! Just grab your BFF or significant other, head outside during one of the best natural lighting times + get to snapping away.
Learning is half the fun.
And I want to see your pictures! After you’re done practicing, tag me in your photos on Instagram using #KWPhotoPractice.
Photo Credit: Mo Olivas