7 Tips for the starting photographer
1. Buy a flash and a cheap Chinese transmitter/receiver …. and do it now.
2. Get in the habit of recognizing what colors will be 50% gray on a luminosity scale … This goes double for those tree hugging nature photographers.
3. Shoot RAW whenever you can. Jpeg’s produced by your camera are based on some defaults that the manufacturer thinks may fit most of the time. Key word being “most”.You’ll need to work more, but the result will be worth it.
4. Get your head around the concept that “you will fail !!!”. Yes, you will … but fortunately that’s the best thing that can happen. If on a photo shoot … every thing goes according to plan … yo learn nothing at the end of the day. Mistakes force you to analyze what happened, leading to some conclusion that will enlighten you. So shoot lots of pictures, screw up as often as you can, and then analyze what went wrong and what went right.
5. Study light ! You should be like a thief casing a bank … always look around to see the way light falls on objects , the way it reflects and refracts, the way light takes the color of the surface it reflects from or refracts through, the shape and softness of the shadows.
6. Study equipment! Instead of spending your nights playing MMO’s , search forums and databases or instructional videos, Google and Youtube are free !!! It will help you understand how pro’s are manipulating light, it will make you feel more comfortable around such equipment if ever you want to assist someone. Further more … when the time comes to upgrade you will know what you need to buy (or make) in order to better you photography.
7. Stop thinking that a better camera body will better your photography. What you need is a better lens and better light and your imagination. Kit lenses rarely do a camera justice so get a cheap 50 mm f/1.8 lens. Most photographers have lost their creative edge, but a good reputation and a large portfolio carries them through. They usually play it safe and boring with the same light setups that have given them good results in the past. Also … a 50 year old photographer was 10 in the 1970’s so he had a very different childhood, he grew up chasing his buddy with a stick on some field. You grew up at the dawn of the digital age so the way you see things is waaaay different that the way he sees them. Use your imagination.
Oh … and eat your veggies !!!