Starting out as a photographer is something we either fall into or want to do.
How many of you have taken some pictures of a friend or a family wedding as a favour. And they have commented on how good they are.
I’m sure it’s happened to you at times. So where does it start, well pretty much from that point from the moment someone gives you that good vibe. Satisfying as it is a remark about your photos goes a long way.
From then on you decide to take more & more photos. & with family and friends commenting on them you soon get the bug for photography.
Your Journey :
You now have already started the journey each time you pick up your camera in fact. Start shooting every day. But how do you get better, as the old saying goes the first 10,000 pictures are you worse. Which in a lot of ways is true. I look back at all the pictures I have taken over the years. I still have some of my very early ones and I see that my first attempts aren’t that great I can tell you.
So how do we learn more about photography the equipment, the techniques, lighting. The list is very long and there is so much to learn. I used to refer to it like a house mortgage it never seems to end!.
Like any profession it takes time and no one no can learn it all in a short period. So the best way to deal with this is to take it at one stage at a time. For example, I learn the following in this order, Camera settings and functions the first rule know your equipment. Make sure you either read the manual or have a look on YouTube for tutorials. There are some excellent ones on there as if your like me you want to see someone showing you than reading a manual.
Practice & technique
Composition learning the ability to compose your shot making sure that you don’t have certain things being cut out of your images. Like people’s legs, heads, arms etc a common early mistakes. Once you have the full understanding of what draws the eye into your photos you will see massive improvements straight away.
Lighting, Now lighting takes the longest to learn. Well it did for me as it involves lots of learning and techniques trial and errors. As well as buying more equipment.
If however your on a budget. I recommend a budget light set up, Now which form of lighting do you need?. I would suggest deciding on what you want to photograph first, such as if you want to get into portrait photography. Then either some strobe lights or continuous lighting setup would be a place to start.
Continuous Lighting, strobe lighting what are these?, I hear you say. Well Continuous is where the lights are on all the time very much like a room light. You can get lights that have a variable dimmer which is better, with these lights you get a constant lighting effect on your subject. So you can see the light effect it is creating at all times. Very useful when starting out.
Strobe lighting is the more up market which would normally have the dimmer light or modelling light as it’s called. Strobe flash bulb built-in just like a flash, these are the better profession lighting options but at cost.
Other Light sources are flashes or Speed lights these are the flash units that sit on top of your camera a good speed light can be a little pricey but there are plenty of after market types that are good all rounders to start with, and even to the point that pros still use, so never think that to get to pro status that you need the top most equipment. Speed lights can also be used off camera, by using a remote trigger system you can place the flash in different fairly nearby locations and shoot etc.
The last form of light which is widely used is natural light the light from the window if your indoors or the outside sunlight, but remember sunlight can be quite harsh especially during midday, you can buy accessories to help tone done the light such as reflectors which in some cases have a transparent white diff-user with them, Also using reflectors to help with lighting situations as well.
Overall as lighting is quite a long process to learn it is wise to practice, practice, practice, as much as possible until your comfortable with a general set up.
So what about those Professional photographers, by now you may have come across a few of us and seen their work and thought wow! How can I get to that standard, how can I get better! Well you can do several things, either follow their work and contact them they may give you some helpful pointers, and general information, as the way I see things there are no secrets in photography if your dedicated enough you will meet what you want as an end result.
Now there are some photographers who are far to busy to speak to you, However in the world of photography there are always others around equally willing to share information that will help you along the way, by searching either YouTube channels, or general search locally you are maybe able to team up with some, I have been contacted several times and asked questions on several topics I will leave my details below if you have any questions.
When all is said and done your photography is as important to you as you want it to be. And it is not always about being better, but it is about the journey along that path, as learning is fun and when you find out new techniques it’s far more worthwhile and rewarding.
I would say that even in my position as a professional photographer I too am still learning and above all I am still on my journey because I enjoy what I do and the service, I offer people. Simply put if I have produced some photos lets say of a brides wedding day, and they are enough to reduce the client to tears of joy than I know I have done my job.
So does your photography end well it doesn’t you can only improve but above all enjoy the journey it takes you down the people you meet the places you see, the Journey is what photography is about.
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