Digital cameras are capable of producing incredibly high-quality pictures these days. That is only one part of the equation, however. You, the photographer, have to understand not only how to use the camera properly, but also what other factors are involved in creating a beautiful image. If you have ever returned from a day of taking pictures only to be dissatisfied by the end result, these tips are for you.
1. Understand your camera
This one might seem apparent, but many people produce poor-quality pictures because they don’t fully grasp every function of the camera. If you use only the “auto” setting of your camera, I’m talking to you! The manual picture taking settings are not just for pros; they are also a great way for you to snap higher precision images. Don’t forget—the manufacturer wants you to understand how to use the camera. Have a look at the manual; you might be surprised by how easy is it to use the previously neglected camera functions. If you’ve misplaced your manual, it should be available for download from the manufacturer’s website. If you understand your camera completely, the quality of your pictures will increase drastically.
2. Keep snapping
A common flaw amongst amateur photographers is to not take enough pictures. In all instances, and especially on special occasions for which you need a perfect picture, don’t be afraid to take many pictures of the same setting. When you get home and review the images, you can decide which to keep and which to discard. There really is no excuse for not snapping until you think you got the perfect shot!
3. Reposition yourself
People generally think that just because a camera has a zoom function that they have to use it. In actuality, you will get a better quality image by repositioning yourself so that you don’t have to use the digital zoom feature. Of course, it won’t always be possible to do this, but if it can be easily accomplished, go for it. As a test, try taking two pictures of the same object, one using digital zoom and another by physically moving closer to the object. You will see that the latter picture is of greater quality.
4. Use natural light
Many people use the flash feature no matter the situation. However, you should be hesitant to use flash unless absolutely necessary. If there is natural light available, use it instead. If indoors or in another dark area, try to create poses in the most well-lit locations, such as in front of a window or an open door. The effectiveness of flash is limited to only certain poses, so use natural light as often as you can. Red eye and other issues can crop up if you use flash instead of natural light.
5. Set resolution
Always set your camera to the highest resolution when taking pictures. With the huge storage capacity of digital cameras, there is no downside to taking the best quality pictures possible. If you want to blow up the pictures later, they will look amazing. If you end up wanting to downsize them for sending via email, you can always use a program to reduce the size of the image and of the file.
6. Be steady
Use both hands when taking pictures to ensure that the camera is held nice and steady. I’m sure you know the feeling of taking a perfect picture, only to realize later that it wasn’t actually perfect and that your hands were shaking, making the image blurry or off-center. You may habitually hold the camera with only one hand, but you develop new habits over time. Your pictures will appreciate it if you use two hands.
7. Think ahead
On most digital cameras, there is a slight delay between holding down the button to take the picture and the picture actually being taken. Hence, if taking pictures of a moving object, you will have to plan ahead and think about where the object will be a second or two after you press the button. This can certainly be tricky, so if necessary, take multiple shots until you get one that is just right.
8. Save juice
Even though your instinct will be to look at your pictures over and over again before coming home, resist the temptation. The slideshow modes on digital cameras use a lot of battery power. If your battery dies, you won’t be able to take any more pictures that day. So, don’t look at pictures until you get home or until you are done taking pictures for the day!
About the Author:
Peter Figgins (couponkathy dot com) writes about digital photography, cameras, and related items.
Like This Article?
Don't Miss The Next One!
Join over 100,000 photographers of all experience levels who receive our free photography tips and articles to stay current: