7 Smart Steps to Better Photo Taking

7 Smart Steps to Better Photo Taking
  • Opening Intro -

    Taking photos does not come naturally for everyone.

    Even with simple push and done cameras, your pictures may not come out the way that you want them to.


You can take better photos by reading up on your camera’s manual, to learn about the best settings for your pictures. You can also take the following smart steps to improve your picture taking dramatically.

1. Get close. That colorful bird that you see sitting on your mulberry bush can be captured as part of the photo or it can become the photo itself. Instead of capturing a wide picture with the bird at the center, move your camera in close to your subject to fill your viewfinder with it. Suddenly, the emphasis is on the bird itself, with its plumage showing off in detail.

2. Get focused. Not every photo can be perfectly centered. That beautiful bluebird is not about to move into the center of a branch to suit you. Instead, you can direct your camera to place your subject in the middle of the viewfinder and then press the shutter button half way down. Effectively, you are reframing the picture and then you will finish taking your shot with the button pressed all the way down.

3. Outside flash. These days, using a flash is so easy as flashes are built within the camera. When outside, use a flash on a cloudy day to help faces stand out. On sunny days, a flash can eradicate facial shadows by distributing light evenly.

4. Natural light. You cannot always offset the effects of sunlight on your subjects. The long shadows of early morning and late afternoon, however, can make it easier to take scenic photos such as a picture of a lake, a mountain or a home. Take note of shadows that cross the face or body of your subjects, using a flash or by changing the position of your photo accordingly to get clear pictures.

5. Level up. Or level down. One reason why your photos may not be coming out the way that you would like them to is because you’re standing well above or well below your subject. Now, if you are at the base of a mountain and are shooting up, there is not much you can do here to change your perspective. And you may not want to either. If your subject is below you as in a small children, your pet or something else that is closer to the ground, then get down to their level and shoot. You’ll do a better job of capturing a child’s face, perhaps focusing on a baby’s bright eyes or cute nose.

6. Background matter. Quite easily, your subject’s background can make or break a picture. A plain background is best, one where your subject stands out and the focus is on a person, a place or an object, not what surrounds it or is behind it.

7. Go vertical. Take a picture and your shots will cover from side to side or horizontally what you want to capture. However, the best part of your subject could be from top to bottom or vertical, therefore take vertical shots as needed. Buildings, towers or any other subject that are tall are best photographed from a vertical position.

Snap Shots

Practice does not always make perfect, but it can help make ordinary photos look extraordinary. If you want to take better shots, bring your camera with you wherever you go. Practice taking shots under a variety of conditions and gain an understanding on how to get the best pictures with your camera. Eventually, you may find yourself investing in better equipment, choosing a new camera that reflects your passion for taking the best shot always.

See AlsoHow to Choose Your Digital SLR Camera


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About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".