Photography 101: How to start taking photographs

Photography 101: How to start taking photographs

Learn to use your camera.

Before you can even think about going out to take photos, you need to learn how your camera works. You could read your camera's instruction manual from front to back, which is let’s be honest, boring! or you can get your can play with all the settings and functions (yes, play!).

Learn what aperture is. Learn what shutter speed is. Learn how the autofocus works and when to use it manually. Learn how the flash works and whether or not you really want that flash popping up in your face every time you snap a photo.

A More in depth guide on this coming soon! Let me know any specific questions you have below!

Getting the right gear.

To be a photographer, you need the right equipment. However at the start a basic model will work or better yet, a film camera is, I would say the best option at the beginning. This is because you can find decent camera body and lenses for a lot cheaper than any DSLR new or otherwise, but it will also help you learn how cameras work inside and out and how every setting changed affects your image. Getting to know your camera settings well will give you a lot more control over how the final images look even when you move on to a DSLR.

Which ever type you go for here are some the essentials:

  • Camera body
  • Lenses
  • Lighting equipment (flashes, etc)
  • Tripod
  • Memory cards or Film
  • Batteries and charger(s) for your camera and flash batteries
  • Editing software (such as Adobe Photoshop Lightroom or Photoshop CC) so you can edit your photos once they're taken. https://clk.tradedoubler.com/click?p=265883&a=3263098

You can use free software if you want. Photopea is an online free version of photoshop it can be a bit slower but a great option to get an idea on the tools and how they work without having to buy an adobe subscription. Try it here https://www.photopea.com

  • Accessories such as reflectors and clamps that will make taking photos easier. In terms of lighting accessories, you can save money by making these items instead of buying them!

Let me know in comments below if you would like more information on lighting or other photography accessories.

Shoot a lot of photos.

  • Experiment with different angles and perspectives. Shoot the same thing from above, below, and at eye level.
  • Pay attention to your background. Make sure it’s not distracting or cluttered!
  • Focus on one element at a time—for example, capture a close up of your subject's eyes to show emotion, and then zoom out on the rest of their body to show context within their environment.

Learn how to edit and process your photos.

Much of the time you'll be able to take one click and be done, but there are a few things you can do to get your pictures turned out with high quality. First and foremost, make sure that your camera is configured for the type of photograph you are trying to take. If you are shooting outside in bright daylight, you can use automatic settings or manual ones with lower ISO (you can read about what ISO means here), whereas if you're indoors without a flash or much natural light, it will be necessary to adjust accordingly. Also look at whether a flash might be useful; it may be more flattering than using just available light. When taking a photo of someone who is not moving and not looking directly into the camera, try using a tripod or steadying your hand against something like a wall.

Get critiques of your work.

Get feedback on your work. Some photographers are reluctant to show their photos to others, especially if they’re still new at it. This can be for a variety of reasons: You may be concerned about how people will react or you’re not sure which photos are good enough to show others. These are all natural feelings, but try not to let them hold you back from getting outside opinions and critiques on your work (or, ideally, praise).

A great way for a young photographer to get quality feedback is by reaching out to professional photographers whose style you admire. If this isn’t an option for you, friends and family members might also be willing to look over your work and offer their thoughts. Don’t forget that there are also plenty of online photography forums where you can post your images and get anonymous feedback.

Join a photographer's group or club.

If you're not a member of one, we recommend joining either an online or in-person photography group or club. These groups are made up of photographers who meet regularly to discuss the art and practice of photography. They are also a great place to ask for help with tricky camera skills, get feedback on your photos, learn from others' success, and meet people with similar passions.

And even if you never plan to sell your work, having other people see it can have its rewards—especially if those people have a different vision than you do for your photos. Photographers who share their work often talk about the feedback they've gotten from friends or family members that helps them see the potential in their shots in ways that they hadn't thought of before.

In addition to getting fresh perspectives on your shots and meeting some new friends along the way, joining a photo group is also a great opportunity to network with fellow photographers who might be able to provide guidance as you get started with photography.

Love what you're shooting,

Here's the thing: photography is all about the details. You have to have a love for what you're shooting, along with an eye for the details that really matter in a photo. This can be easily missed if you don't know exactly what you're looking at. Some of the most important details are lighting, angle and background. I'll talk more about each of these in a minute.

Before we dive into those three elements, let's discuss the different types of photography. This is especially important because it'll help determine which aspects of your camera and photos you should focus on first. For example - if sports photography is your jam, then focusing on long lenses might be the best place to start. If you want to shoot weddings professionally one day, learn how to take beautiful portraits so that people recognise you as someone who takes stunning photos!

Honing In your style

Hone in on a specific type of photography that you'd like to focus on, from portraits and glamour shots to landscapes and still life photography, or even food photography or news photography.

Before you start taking photos of your dog in different poses every day, let's focus on what you want to achieve with your photography. One of the best ways to do that is to hone in on a specific type of photography that you'd like to focus on.

You could choose: landscape photography, portrait photography, documentary photography, wildlife photography, street photography, travel photography, fashion or glamour photography, architectural photography, macro (close-up) and micro (extreme close-up) photography or fine art/creative photography. There are also many other types of specialised photography including night photography and photojournalism (used by newspapers).

Once you've narrowed down the type of photography you want to focus on it will be easier for you to start developing a style which is all about finding the correct balance between being creative and original vs having lots of technical know how. It can take years to develop a style but there's no reason why it can't be something you're working towards right now!

What genres do you enjoy?

You could focus on photography from your travels, or taking photos of food, or even doing model shoots. The possibilities of what you can learn are endless! let's discuss the different types of photography. This is especially important because it'll help determine which aspects of your camera and photos you should focus on first. For example - if sports photography is your jam, then focusing on long lenses might be the best place to start. If you want to shoot weddings professionally one day, learn how to take beautiful portraits so that people recognise you as someone who takes stunning photos!

Thanks so much for reading. Hopefully, this article has inspired you to go out there and try new styles and different genres of photography. It's important to learn the fundamentals first and then build off of them later—you could wind up discovering a completely new hobby or passion that you never thought would be possible!

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